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President Bush's plans are going ahead to send 21,500 additional US troops to fight in Iraq. Three Republican Senators said today they aren't buying into the program. We talk about the new mission, the prospects of getting it accomplished and the likelihood that Iraq's government will meet the President's "benchmarks." Then, can the world's biggest sports star finally make soccer a major factor in the United States?

Making News President Bush Selling the New Way Forward to Americans 5 MIN, 52 SEC

The selling job for increasing troops in Iraq began with the President's speech last night from the White House.  This afternoon, he rallied soldiers and civilians at Fort Benning, Georgia.  Sheryl Gay Stolberg of the New York Times has an analysis.l

Sheryl Gay Stolberg, New York Times (@SherylNYT)

Main Topic The Selling Job for Increasing Troops in Iraq 36 MIN

An overnight poll by ABC News and the Washington Post shows that 60% of Americans are against the President's "New Way Forward" in Iraq. Before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice elaborated on the rationale for increasing troops. But three members of the President's own Republican Party said they can't go along. Even White House supporters call this the President's "last chance" to rally support. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said today that he doesn't know how long increased troop levels will last, but assured that before many additional soldiers arrive, there will be time to evaluate whether Iraq's government is fulfilling its obligations. Meantime, he signed orders authorizing the military to notify units and family members about new deployments. What is the mission of additional US troops?  Are they trained and equipped to perform it?  Are 21,500 enough? Is the Iraqi government really prepared to divide oil revenues and political power between Shiites and Sunnis as President Bush demands?

Noam Levey, Los Angeles Times (@NoamLevey )
Gordon Lubold, Wall Street Journal (@glubold)
Winslow Wheeler, Center for Defense Information
Gary Schmitt, American Enterprise Institute
Lawrence Korb, Center for American Progress Action Fund (@LarryKorb)

Reporter's Notebook David Beckham Goes Hollywood 7 MIN, 10 SEC

David Beckham is arguably the world's biggest sports star.  Now he's going Hollywood.  Beckham had soccer history with Manchester United, then spent a lot of time on the bench for the Spanish team Real Madrid. Today he announced he's signing a $250 million contract with the Galaxy, which plays in Carson, a suburb of Los Angeles, California.

Frank Dell'Apa, soccer writer for the Boston Globe and ESPN.com

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