Britain's top military commander, Admiral Michael Boyce, is cautioning that the current anti-terrorism campaign in Afghanistan may take years.
Admiral Boyce, Britain's Chief of the Defense Staff, added that the international campaign to stop terrorism could last for 50 years. He likens the struggle to the Cold War, which lasted roughly half a century.
British Defense Secretary Geoff Hoon says it's not sensible to try and put a timetable on the campaign against terrorism. Visiting Oman today (Saturday) Secretary Hoon said that the resiliency of the Afghan Taleban, in the current military effort, is a key factor. He says the Afghan action could drag on, or continuing pressure could cause the overnight collapse of the Taleban. Secretary Hoon is in the Gulf state observing joint British - Omani military exercises.
Britain announced on Friday that 600 of its Special Forces personnel, now in Oman, will be made available for Afghan-related duties. Those plans say 200 Royal Marines will board two assault ships, ready for immediate action. Some 400 Royal Marines -- from the same 40 Commando Unit -- will return to Great Britain on 24-hour standby alert.