US Plans 14,000 Additional Combat Troops in Afghanistan
The figures come amidst news the Obama administration is planning to vastly increase its reliance on contractors in Afghanistan in order to minimize the size of a new troop deployment. The Los Angeles Times reports the Pentagon has drawn up plans to add as many 14,000 combat troops in Afghanistan by having them replace support units engaged in non-combat duties. Under the plan, the US would avoid a major troop increase by replacing the non-combat soldiers with contractors. The “outsourcing” wouldn’t completely offset an expected troop increase but could reduce its size. A recent CNN poll, meanwhile, shows 57 percent of Americans now oppose the Afghan war, an eleven-point increase from the end of last year.