WASHINGTON Jan 8 The Obama administration does
not rule out the possibility that no U.S. troops will remain in
Afghanistan after 2014, the White House said on Monday, just
days before President Barack Obama is due to meet Afghan
president Hamid Karzai.
"That would be an option that we would consider," U.S.
deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters in a
preview of Karzai's Friday visit when asked whether the
administration was weighing a "zero option" in its deliberations
on how large a residual force to leave behind after the end of
the U.S. combat mission next year.
U.S. officials have said privately the White House had asked
for options to be developed for keeping between 3,000 and 9,000
troops in the country. But Rhodes said on Monday it would be
months before a final decision is made.