The top U.S. commander in Afghanistan is welcoming the White House decision to send more combat troops, saying they are needed to set the stage for a turnaround in the war.
Gen. David McKiernan told reporters at the Pentagon on Wednesday that the extra U.S. troops will be sent to southern Afghanistan, where he said there have been insufficient security forces to confront the insurgents.
President Barack Obama on Tuesday approved the dispatching of 17,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan to stabilize what he called a deteriorating situation. They include an Army combat brigade and a Marine expeditionary brigade and will join the approximately 30,000 U.S. troops already there.
McKiernan said that while extra U.S. troops are necessary, there also is a need for more contributions from international civilian organizations.