The Washington Post pointed out yesterday that the previously unannounced deployment of 13,000 support troops to Afghanistan “exacerbates the strain on the force.” While the burdens on soldiers are still high, the recession economy has eased that strain to a large extent. The Washington Times this reported this morning that the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force sent 169,000 new troops for training in the previous fiscal year. Of these, 96% are high school graduates.
Our own economic quagmire may prevent a military quagmire in Afghanistan if the president backs General McChrystal’s request for more combat troops. The outcome of that request remains uncertain as the administration has recently made moves to downplay the national security threat poised by the Taliban. As the war has returned to the news, the American people have increasingly supported a fight against the Taliban, despite the administration’s indecisiveness.