US officials have requested $750 million to expand a program designed to assist foreign militaries engaged in counterterrorism.
Suggesting a dramatic shift in Washington's counterterrorism strategy, the State Department and the Pentagon want to beef up training of foreign militaries and paramilitary troops. The proposal comes as US military trainers are preparing to train Pakistan's paramilitary forces this summer.
In a proposal to Congress this week, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice requested $750 million to train troops around the world who are engaged in counterterrorism operations. That would constitute a 250 percent increase, The New York Times reports.
Mr. Gates said that rapidly building up the armed forces of friendly nations to combat terrorism within their borders was "a vital and enduring military requirement."
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