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Grim numbers posted in June for troops in Afghanistan

By the CNN Wire Staff
A commemorative memorial to British soldiers has been placed at a patrol base in Helmand province.
A commemorative memorial to British soldiers has been placed at a patrol base in Helmand province.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Gen. David Petraeus takes over as deadly month ends
  • 101 dead in June; Previous high was 79
  • Debate over Afghanistan strategy intensifying
  • Obama wants to start withdrawal next year

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- The Senate confirmed Gen. David Petraeus to take over as the top military commander in Afghanistan on a grim day for international troops fighting there.

The June death toll for NATO-led forces reached 101 on Wednesday, the highest ever in a single month since the war began almost nine years ago. The deadliest month previously had been August, 2009, when 79 soldiers died.

A service member died Wednesday of wounds sustained in an small arms attack by insurgents in eastern Afghanistan, the military said. No other details, including name and nationality, were immediately available.

U.S. Sgt. John M. Rogers, 26, of Scottsdale, Arizona, died Sunday of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident.

They were numbers 100 and 101, according to a CNN count.

Video: When General Petraeus takes over
RELATED TOPICS
  • Afghanistan
  • NATO
  • David Petraeus

The grim reality of June comes as the situation in Afghanistan is intensifying, as is concern at home over Washington's strategy.

President Barack Obama dismissed Gen. Stanley McChrystal last week for inappropriate comments he made about America's civilian leadership.

That controversy sparked debate about the best way to defeat the insurgency.

About 130,000 foreign troops are stationed in Afghanistan and Obama wants to send 20,000 more. But he has said he will start withdrawing U.S. troops in July 2011.

Petraeus supports that plan but many of Obama's critics in Congress do not.

 
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