A large part of the reason it's difficult to follow the war in Afghanistan is progress there isn't easily defined. Instead of clear metrics such as battles won and territory gained, progress there is measured on a scale that's not clearly labeled: hearts and minds won over. A recent AP story helps put into focus the slow progress the U.S. is making in Afghanistan and the obstacles and the dangers the Army faces as it attempts to woo the local population away from the Taliban.
The setting is a small wheat field that had mysteriously been left unharvested. Read the story to find out the lengths the Army went to in order to protect the locals from the bombs hidden in the field without alienating or angering them. Some lucky timing may have also been involved.
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