Susan Rice Defends Obama's Afghanistan Troop Increase

On 9/11, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice reminds Obama critics why Afghanistan is crucial.

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By Nikki Schwab, Washington Whispers

As Democrats in Congress get queasier over President Obama's decision to send more U.S. troops to Afghanistan, Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, defended the plan at a meeting with reporters this morning. "What the American people and members of Congress need to understand is that we have a very crucial stake in Afghanistan, and if you need any reminder of that it comes today, on the anniversary of 9/11," says Rice. "This is a place in which the 9/11 attacks were planned and hatched, and those that committed those atrocities remain active in this very region."

While awaiting more information about on-the-ground conditions, congressional Democrats in recent days have urged the White House to produce a plan for winning the war in Afghanistan. Rice didn't give war-winning details; instead, she urged patience. "It is frankly premature to make judgments about the portion of the strategy that we are now embarking on, as we are just in the process of implementing it." And she reiterated that the United States needs to be in the region because al Qaeda remains there. "We don't believe the al Qaeda leadership is elsewhere in the world, we believe them to be there," Rice says.

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