The US Senate May 27 approved a $60 billion supplemental spending bill to help support a “surge” in troops in Afghanistan. About half the funds will go to the Pentagon for the additional 30,000 troops. The package also includes $349 million in economic and security aid for Pakistan. The vote comes just as the number of US military casualties in Afghanistan surpassed 1,000. (RTTNews, VOA, Daily Times, Pakistan, May 28)
The “surge” will bring US troops in Afghanistan to over 100,000, with another 30,000 from international forces. It has been met with angry protests at the Senate by anti-war activists. Aid groups have expressed concerns that the surge will deepen Afghanistan’s humanitarian crisis. Afghan casualties are rapidly rising, especially among civilians.