- The Washington Times - Monday, November 26, 2012

Pentagon officials aim to determine in the next few weeks how many U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan after 2014, Defense Department press secretary George Little said Monday.

Currently, about 67,000 U.S. troops are in Afghanistan, and all international combat troops are expected to leave the country by the end of 2014.

The Pentagon intends to leave a smaller contingent there to train Afghan security forces and conduct operations against al Qaeda remnants, Mr. Little said.

He said the Pentagon has asked Marine Gen. John Allen, the top commander in Afghanistan, for different options, but nothing has been formally discussed with the White House yet.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Gen. Allen has drafted three options: 6,000, 10,000 and 15,000 troops.

“We hope to complete the entire process within the next several weeks,” Mr. Little said.

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