Washington: The people who planned and
executed the 9/11 attack are still operating in Afghanistan and
plotting attack against the United States, the White House
said on Tuesday, adding this is the reason why America continues to
be in the area.
"We should keep in mind that the reason we are in
Afghanistan is because the people who plotted and executed the
attacks on 9/11 are still operating there and are plotting
attacks against Americans even now," White House Deputy Press
Secretary Bill Burton told reporters abroad Air Force One
travelling with US President Barack Obama, en route to Andrews
Air Force Base from Mexico.
President Obama, he said, feels that the troops in
Afghanistan are operated under some of the most dangerous
conditions in the world and they are doing it bravely and with
a great amount of courage. Obama fully supports what the US
troops are doing in Afghanistan, he said.
The new Af-Pak strategy announced in March this year
is still to be fully implemented, he said, adding that the aim
of the new strategy is to ensure the defeat of Taliban and
Observing that the US is in a very tough situation in
Afghanistan, Burton said the White House believes that there
is a strategy in place.
Noting that there would be no change in the strategy,
he said, "The President authorised 21,000 new troops for
Afghanistan -- they`re not all on the ground just yet, but we
believe that with the strategy and the assets and the infusion
of resources, that we`re going to be able to achieve our
When asked if there would be any increase in the
number of US troops in Afghanistan, he said the commander of
the US forces is currently reviewing the situation and would
come out with his own set of recommendations.
"The President`s strategy hasn`t fully been
implemented just yet. But we do believe that with the strategy
that we have, with assets that we`re putting on the ground,
that we are going to be able to achieve the goals that we`re
trying to achieve," he said.
"President is in close contact with his commanders on
the ground, but again, thinks that the strategy that he put in
place is a winning one," Burton said.