Mullen's comments to Congress Tuesday were the first time he has gone on record saying the Afghan war needs even more American forces.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen told Congress Tuesday that more troops will be necessary in Afghanistan, for the first time offering insight into where he and other top uniformed leaders stand on an issue that is dividing President Obama's party.
The administration is currently awaiting the recommendations of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top commander in Afghanistan. If, as expected, he requests more troops – perhaps as many as 45,000 – and Democrats oppose the request, they would be seen as flouting independent military advice.
Conversely, Mullen's comments help most Republicans who generally support a "surge" of additional forces.