[QODLink]
Americas
US 'losing control' in Afghanistan
Bush-era official says Obama sending more troops before review was "a little backwards".
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2009 02:12 GMT
Armitage says he was taken aback that Obama sent more troops before a policy review was completed

Richard Armitage, a former US deputy secretary of state, has told Al Jazeera that the conflict in Afghanistan may be "spinning out of control".

"The situation in Afghanistan may be spinning out of control more quickly than we are gaining control and it's of course exacerbated by their next-door neighbour Pakistan," Armitage, who served in the administration of George Bush, the former US president, said on Tuesday.

He also said Barack Obama, Bush's successor, got it "a little backwards" sending thousands of extra troops to Afghanistan before his administration completed a review of US policy on the region.

"I was a little taken aback by the fact that we surged 17,000 soldiers to Afghanistan before we completed the review - that seemed to be a little backwards," he said.

Obama said in February he was deploying an extra 17,000 troops to Afghanistan to take on a resurgent Taliban.

As part of the review on US policy on Afghanistan and Pakistan unveiled in March, he also said he was sending 4,000 US troops to train Afghan security forces.

Obama's strategy also included proposals to counter persistent attacks by Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters across the border with Pakistan and additional development aid for both nations.

The Pakistani government has also made a number of deals with fighters there in an attempt to head-off their growing strength.

The US currently has about 38,000 troops in Afghanistan in addition to around 42,000 Nato troops.

The Taliban-led campaign has steadily gained strength in recent years, with 2008 the deadliest year so far.

Armitage left the Bush administration after he was re-elected president in November 2004.

He announced his resignation the day after his superior, Colin Powell, Bush's secretary of state, quit.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
The past isn't far away for a people exiled from Crimea by Russia and the decades it took to get home.
New report highlights plight of domestic helpers in the United Kingdom, with critics comparing it to kefala system.
Kurds say declaring Saddam Hussein's 1988 campaign to be a genocide could help with lawsuits and healing process.
join our mailing list