U.S. sends in more troops to Afghanistan because of NATO delay

Pentagon increasingly agitated by NATOs failure to deliver trainers

Pentagon officials are saying that NATO isn’t doing enough and have had to send in hundreds of artillery troops and air defense artillery soldiers from Oklahoma and Kentucky to Afghanistan. A few weeks ago American Defense Secretary Robert Gates signed orders for the troops to work as trainers saying that European nations weren’t moving fast enough to send in support. “We’re still not getting NATO able to force-generate and deploy forces in the numbers that we need,” said Army Lt. Gen. William Caldwell, training leader in Afghanistan, reported NPR. “So Gates said, ‘OK then, I’m going to give you another unit.’ ” It was the second time in a year that Gates has had to send in extra troops because of NATO. In total, NATO has sent around 900 trainers to work with Afghan soldiers and police, compared with 2,000 trainers the U.S. has sent. Gates says that NATO is still short of its promised amount of people and that the overall mission is short by about 750 people. Growing opposition to the war in NATO members like Canada, Britain and Germany will continue to aggravate the issue.


Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.