The Obama administration’s decision to take some time before deciding on the request from Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal for up to 40,000 more troops in Afghanistan is hurting efforts to obtain nonmilitary resources for the counterinsurgency program in the country, according to a senior military official.
“While the Obama administration ponders — I won’t say delays — the McChrystal assessment, a lot of resources that people in Afghanistan are seeking from various agencies are being sat on,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak publicly.
It has been difficult to get nonmilitary agencies of government, both U.S. and foreign, to persuade people to go to Afghanistan as part of reconstruction and stability efforts. With the delay in answering Gen. McChrystal’s request for more troops and discussion among senior officials in Washington of rewriting a second new strategy in six months, getting agencies to commit their people has become harder, the official said.
“People are not moving to send their people here if they are not sure what [the] overall administration position is,” the official said.
Bill Gertz covers national security affairs. He can be reached at 202/636-3274, or at insidether firstname.lastname@example.org.