The United States is trying to persuade its NATO partners to commit 10,000 additional troops for Afghanistan as part of President Obama’s strategy for the region. President Obama previously indicated a quick close to the Afghanistan war. A formal strategy on Afghanisatn is expected to emerge by next week. Sources also reported possible additional U.S. troop deployment to the tune of 35,000 in 2010. U.S. has currently about 71,000 troops stationed in Afghanistan.
While the U.S. is trying to get allies commitment on 10,000 troops, reports suggest that the allies are willing to provide fewer than half that number. NATO allies are not ready to commit more resources due to the growing unpopularity of the Afghanistan war in their nations as well as concerns around charges of corruption on President Karzai's government.
U.S administration is hoping to get NATO allies to commit forces to supplement the planned 40,000 troop deployment target. This would help reduce the criticism, the Obama administration is facing on troop deployment as well as ease the pressure on already stretched out military forces.
Allies like Britain is already facing internal criticism and it seems reluctant to add forces. The British government is facing a opinion poll that suggests that 70% people favor early withdrawal as the nation has already lost 97 soldiers in Afghanistan this year.
Germany and France are also shying away from any further commitments to the war. The support for war is now so low in the two European nations that they can reportedly, barely maintain current troop levels. Among other prominent partners, the Netherlands and Canada have already begun chalking out exit plans.
The only nations who seem committed to add forces are Poland, Italy and Georgia. Georgia is a NATO entry aspirant and is planning to add one company of troops in 2010. While the talks are on some military analysts seem skeptical about the idea of supplementing U.S. forces with small contingents from other nations. They suggest that this sort of an arrangement with mixed forces may not yield the results that a single force may be able to achieve. They believe that the forces of other nations are not as well matched as their U.S. counterparts in skills and ammunitions.
While the allies deliberate, U.S. will unveil its Afghanistan strategy on Tuesday. NATO foreign ministers are scheduled to meet in Brussels on the next Thursday and Friday to discuss Afghanistan though troop commitments are not likely to be discussed in detail before the upcoming so-called Force-generation Conference on Dec. 7, in Brussels.