U.S. President Donald Trump is likely to announce an increase in U.S. troop numbers in Afghanistan when he lays out his strategy for America's longest military conflict, a senior administration official said. Tom Rowe has more.
President Donald Trump laying out his long-awaited strategy for the war in Afghanistan Monday night in a prime-time address to the nation..
A senior administration official telling Reuters the likeliest scenario: an increase in US troop strength after a series of setbacks against Taliban insurgents.
The extra troops recommended by Trump's top advisers, including national security adviser HR McMaster and Defense Secretary James Mattis..who has suggested boosting American forces in Afghanistan by about 4000.. adding to the 8400 already on the ground.
Trump, who reached his decision after strategy talks Friday at Camp David, has made no secret of his frustration with the stalemate in the nearly 16 year old war..even threatening to fire top US general John Nicholson.
The reason: as the US has scaled back its forces in recent years, the Taliban has been retaking lost ground with the Afghan military seemingly powerless to stop it.
Further complicating the equation for Trump, an internal debate over how hard to pressure neighboring Pakistan to crack down on the Taliban and its allies. U.S. intelligence agencies tell Reuters conditions in Afghanistan will almost certainly get worse through next year, even with an increase in the size of the US force.