“More troops to Afghanistan within weeks”

When you’re in for a counterinsurgency action in Afghanistan, that necessarily means that you’re going to see more casualties, said Reiham Salam from the New America Foundation.

“If you have an emphasis on securing the troops instead of securing the Afghan population – that means that you have lower casualties, but you are also not achieving your strategic objectives,” he continued.

"When folks in the military believe that they have a clearly defined mission [in Afghanistan], then they actually become more inclined to support it.”

As to whether he believes that President Barack Obama will wait for a legitimate government in Afghanistan before deciding whether to send more troops, Reiham argued that “the political environment is changing in such a way, and if you buy the idea of the new doctrine you need to have the support of the American public before you make any large-scale military commitment – you can see why he [Barack Obama] is going somewhat slowly with this decision.”

“He is definitely going to send more troops,” Reiham added. “I do not know if he is going to send as many troops as the military commanders in the region would like him to send – there is a set of complex political pressures – but he will send more troops and this decision is going to be made within the next few weeks.”