Obama prepares for Asia trip


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President Obama honored the nation's veterans with a traditional wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

"There's no tribute, no commemoration, no praise, that can truly match the magnitude of your service and your sacrifice," said President Obama at Arlington National Cemetery.

And right now, it is in Afghanistan where tens of thousands of troops are making that sacrifice. After taking part in Veterans Day ceremonies, the president sat down with his national security advisers to discuss a new strategy for Afghanistan. His top commander there has asked for 40,000 additional troops.

Many Blue Star Moms are eager for Obama to make a decision, knowing full well that it will affect their sons and daughters serving overseas. Karen Porter of San Francisco has had many sleepless nights since her son, Philip, was deployed to the Helmand Province in Afghanistan six months ago. He is an intelligence officer with the marines.

"As a parent that would be great to have 40,000 more troops there because that means he's going to be safer, in my opinion. On the other hand that puts 40,000 more sons and husbands at risk," said Porter.

The War in Afghanistan is now in its ninth year and is claiming U.S. lives at a record pace. Political analysts say the president is facing growing criticism from progressives in Congress about the cost of war.

"The question is can you now continue to pursue an open-ended war in Afghanistan when you have these domestic needs and a huge deficit," says ABC7 political analyst Bruce Cain.

Obama is expected to deliberate his options during his upcoming trip to Asia.

"I look at it, can we afford to let that part of Asia and the Middle East fall into chaos? We can't." Col. Whitney Hall, a former Pentagon specialist on international security.

The president's trip to Asia begins on Thursday. He returns to Washington next Thursday and could announce his new strategy in Afghanistan before Thanksgiving.

>> More on this story: Obama meets with Afghanistan advisors

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