Tags: mccain | victory | afghan | war

McCain: Victory in Afghanistan in 18 Months

Friday, 20 Nov 2009 05:22 PM

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HALIFAX, Canada – US Senator John McCain predicted an allied win in Afghanistan in one year to 18 months if sufficient troops are sent, as the White House mulls sending tens of thousands of reinforcements.

But he said that timeline is threatened by US President Barack Obama's delay in rolling out a new Afghanistan strategy.

"I am absolutely convinced and totally confident that with sufficient resources we can turn the situation around," McCain told reporters at an international defense summit in easternmost Canada.

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"I even am bold enough to predict that in a year to 18 months you will see success if the effort is sufficiently resourced and there is a commitment to get the job done before setting a date to leave the region," he said.

But he added that many US lawmakers are "impatient with the delay in the decision-making process," which is fuelling allies' ambivalence about the mission.

The Obama administration has been deliberating since August on a new plan to overcome a growing Taliban insurgency and help Afghans rebuild their war-torn nation.

The top US military commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal has requested 40,000 more US troops for a broad counter-insurgency strategy to stabilize the country.

The president has been under sustained attack from Republican foes who charge his "dithering" has put the mission and currently deployed troops at risk.

His spokesman Robert Gibbs said earlier Friday Obama would wait until after Americans mark Thanksgiving on November 26 to announce plans.

"I am confident that the president will make the right decision," McCain said.

Copyright © 2009 Agence France Presse. All rights reserved.

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