Gates: War fatigue a factor in Obama's Afghanistan troop withdrawal plans

Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Tuesday said growing war fatigue in Congress and among the American people will shape the coming Afghanistan troop withdrawal plan.

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President Obama had to factor in the domestic mood to calculate the political “sustainability” of the various options for removing U.S. forces that he has been mulling, Gates said during a joint press conference with Japanese officials and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Gates acknowledged there is a lot of concern among lawmakers and the American people after a decade of war in Afghanistan, and the president must consider that “as well as conditions on the ground.”

Obama is expected to announce plans to withdraw during a speech Wednesday evening, and could lay out a path to the removal of as many as 30,000 U.S. forces, according to media reports.