Senate Republicans will back a request for a surge of 40,000 troops in Afghanistan, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said on Sunday.
McConnell said on Face the Nation that despite strong evidence that Afghanistan is being run by a “flawed administration,” the country is a haven for terrorists who threaten America.
“This is about protecting the United States of America,” McConnell said.
McConnell said if Obama asks for the troops at the behest of the U.S. military commanders, “I think Republicans almost overwhelmingly will support the president if that is his request.”
Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., who also appeared on the show, said a troop increase should be considered as just one part of an overall examination of the strategy in Afghanistan.
Reed, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and a former Army captain, said the U.S. commander there, Gen. Stanley McChrystal and other top military officials did a good job analyzing the situation in Afghanistan, “But their perspective is rather narrow. It's military operational aspects.”
Reed said Obama would have to analyze the war strategy, including the cost, before making a decision.
“I mean, we do not want to repeat mistakes previously of assuming a rather simplistic approach, more troops and more this, et cetera, and just go forward,” Reed said. “I think now is the time for a fundamental analysis of all of the components. “