Afghan war commander calls new strategy achievable

Gen. Stanley McChrystal, Commander of the International Security Assistance Force and Commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, arrives to testify with U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl W. Eikenberry, right, before the House Armed Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2009. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Gen. Stanley McChrystal, Commander of the International Security Assistance Force and Commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, arrives to testify with U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl W. Eikenberry, right, before the House Armed Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2009. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) (Gerald Herbert - AP)
The Associated Press
Tuesday, December 8, 2009; 2:36 PM

WASHINGTON -- The general in charge of the war in Afghanistan is telling Congress that President Barack Obama's new war strategy is achievable and that combat force levels can be reduced starting in the summer of 2011.

Gen. Stanley McChrystal said he supports Obama's new war strategy - as did Ambassador Karl Eikenberry, who had voiced misgivings previously. The new battle plan includes an 18-month timeline until the first U.S troops come home.

Democrats will likely try to get the general to say the plan amounts to a muddle. Republicans plan to press him on whether the 2011 deadline encourages the Taliban insurgents. McChrystal said Obama's decision "recognizes that the next 18 months will likely be decisive, and ultimately, enables success."



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