Reporting from Washington —
President Obama said Tuesday that the United States must "responsibly" wind down the war in Afghanistan but did not rule out stepping up the pace of the withdrawal as anti-American sentiment in the country flares.
Obama vowed justice for the victims of a shooting spree by an American soldier in southern Afghanistan, saying his administration will "spare no effort" in conducting a full investigation and following the facts "wherever they lead us."
As he prepares to host British Prime Minister David Cameron beginning later Tuesday, Obama said the two of them will "consult about the way forward" in Afghanistan.
The United States already has a strategy that will phase out the war effort, Obama noted, one that calls for the return of 23,000 troops by the end of this summer. Obama set a goal of a steady withdrawal of troops until the international forces completely turn over responsibility to Afghan officials by the end of 2014, and his advisors are now trying to figure out what that means in actual numbers.