U.S. defense chief says no major shift in Afghan strategy

12:30, September 24, 2010      

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U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (L) and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen answer questions from the media during a press at the Pentagon on Sept. 23, 2010. Mullen agreed with Gates that the December review of Afghan strategy would likely endorse the current approach. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

  U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Thursday said he expects no significant change to the Afghan strategy in a major review of the war that's due out December.

  Gates made the remarks at a Pentagon news briefing. He said he believes U.S. strategy in Afghanistan is sound, and he has no personal reservation about it.

  He also denied in-fighting in the Obama administration on the Afghan war strategy, saying the relationships within the government are harmonious.

  The Obama administration decided last December to send additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan, and to begin pull out of that country by July, 2011. A major review on the strategy is due to be submitted to the Congress in December.

  The strategy reportedly received mixed reaction from the military and inside the government. A new book by Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward alleged the administration was split on the strategy.

  Gates said "once the president made his decisions last December, everybody at the senior level in the administration was on board."


Source: Xinhua


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