The Obama administration is hedging its bets on how long US troops will remain in Afghanistan.   Last year, when announcing his request for 30,000 additional troops for Afghanistan, the President said they would be withdrawn in August 2011.  Since then it has become clear that the US is heavily committed to a strategy that would keep US troops in Afghanistan through 2014.   Yesterday,  after making a surprise visit to Pakistan and Afghanistan, the Vice President reportedly announced that the US would remain present in Afghanistan even beyond 2014 “if Afghanistan wanted”.   As usual, there is no statement on how the continuing US presence would be financed.


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