President Donald Trump has increased the number of U.S. troops and civilians working for the Department of Defense in the Middle East to 54,180 from 40,517 in the past four months, representing a 33-percent rise.
This number doesn’t even account for the big rise in troops stationed in Afghanistan since Trump announced his new strategy for the fight against the Taliban in late August.
These figures, first pointed out on Twitter by Dr. Micah Zenko, a foreign policy expert, come from the Pentagon’s quarterly reports on personnel. In other words, these numbers are no secret, which raises concerns about the apparent lack of discourse over the expansion of the U.S. military in a region in which it already has a long, complicated history.
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