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Afghan command nominee vague on troop withdrawal timetable

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Pressed by lawmakers at his confirmation hearing on whether he would support keeping troop levels at about 68,000 for the next two years to reassure Afghans and U.S. allies, Marine General Joseph Dunford said he wanted to assess the military capabilities that would be needed through 2014 before making that judgment. Dunford, who earned the nickname 'Fighting Joe' during the 2003 Iraq invasion and currently serves as assistant commandant of the Marines, acknowledged under questioning by Senator John McCain that he had not been included in ongoing discussions about troop levels in Afghanistan.

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