Secretary of Defense Robert Gates made a quick visit to troops on the outskirts of Kandahar, declaring the area the “tip of the spear” ahead of the long-promised invasion of the major city and the surrounding province.
Though officials have only indicated that the invasion would happen later in the year, US commander General Stanley McChrystal said the stage was set and that the military would “absolutely” seize control over the city when the invasion came.
The invasion will likely not be immediately launched, however, as several thousand US Marines were announced to be staying in Marjah, the most recent target of the offensive.
It had previously been suggested that the conflict would follow the same strategy as the Marjah invasion of last month, though attacking such a massive city instead of a tiny farming community obviously makes the battle an entirely different prospect.
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