From Reuters, Nov. 22, 2008 via FreeRepublic.com:
U.S. eyes "surge" of over 20,000 for AfghanistanAnd the Secretary of Defense at the time was current Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
The Pentagon is considering a plan to send more than 20,000 troops to Afghanistan over the next 12 to 18 months to help safeguard elections and quell rising Taliban violence, officials said on Friday.
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he and top commanders had discussed sending five brigades to Afghanistan, including four brigades of combat ground forces as well as an aviation brigade, which a defense official said would consist mainly of support troops. An Army combat brigade has about 3,500 soldiers.
Gates said much of the infusion could take place before Afghanistan holds elections by next autumn.
"I think it's important that we have a surge of forces before the election," said Gates, who stressed no decision on troop deployments had been taken.
"We've had some very preliminary discussions," he told reporters after meeting to discuss southern Afghanistan with his counterparts from NATO countries with troops deployed in the region.
Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell said more support troops, also known as "enablers," could also head to Afghanistan as Gates considers a request by U.S. Army Gen. David McKiernan, the top commander of NATO and U.S. forces in the country.
Contrary to "That One's" claims that troop requests were denied, it appears from this story they were being considered.