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'Washington Post':  US Military Chiefs Oppose Temporary Increase of US Troops in Iraq


The Washington Post says the Bush administration is divided over the idea of temporarily increasing the number of U.S. troops in Iraq.

The newspaper reported Tuesday that unnamed U.S. officials said the White House is pushing to send 15,000 to 30,000 more troops to Iraq for as long as eight months.

But the Post says the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff disagree with that proposal.

White House spokesman Tony Snow says President Bush has still not decided on the future strategy for Iraq.

Meanwhile, White House Budget Director Rob Portman says U.S. costs for the Iraq war are likely to exceed $110 billion this fiscal year.

He did not say whether that amount takes into account the possible increase in U.S. troops deployed in Iraq.

The U.S. Congress has already approved $70 billion in 2007 funding for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. But the Bush administration is expected to seek further funds for the war in Iraq.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff include the chiefs of service of each major branch of the armed services in the United States.

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