Thursday, February 15, 2007

Bush orders more troops into Afghanistan

President Bush today announced a new infusion of troops and funds to help Afghanistan survive an expected assault this spring from the Taliban and urged NATO to do more, too.

Asking NATO nations to send additional troops to Afghanistan and urging their soldiers be given more flexibility, Bush said, "When our commanders on the ground say to our respective countries `We need additional help,' our NATO countries must provide it.

"Allies must lift restrictions on the forces they do provide so NATO commanders have the flexibility they need to defeat the enemy wherever the enemy may make its stand," Bush said.

U.S. troops will have their stay extended for four months, and deploy a replacement force for the future, Bush said. He added that the U.S. government will also help increase Afghanistan's security forces — doubling the Army's size to 70,000 from 32,000 over the next two years.

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