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NATO prepares to transfer authority in Afghanistan

NATO officials are in Lisbon, holding a summit on Afghanistan. The goal is to approve an American plan to hand over control to the Afghan government and complete withdrawal of combat troops by the end of 2014. But it may not be so straightforward. Here’s what you need to know.

NATO’s top civilian authority in Afghanistan indicated on Wednesday that 2014 is just “a goal” that is “realistic, but not guaranteed.” Troop numbers may not be significantly reduced by that point, but their mission would shift to training and advising Afghan troops. Last weekend during a Washington Post interview, Afghan president Hamid Karzai criticized the U.S. counterinsurgency strategy. In the immediate aftermath, General Petraeus canceled a meeting with Karzai.

General Petraeus is scheduled to deliver a progress report and strategy review on Afghanistan next month in Washington. The three areas where most of the enemy-initiated attacks occur are in Kandahar, Helmand and Kunar provinces. Photojournalist Sebastian Meyer of the Guardian newspaper traveled to Kandahar province to see how the counter insurgency strategy is working.

After Meyer’s report, Jon Meacham parses the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan with Christine Fair, an expert on South Asian political and military affairs from Georgetown University, who spent this past August in Helmand province analyzing the counterinsurgency offensive there.



  • SdhXO1st

    What’s wrong with overproduced programming? Sense of authenticity. Point of the NATO/Afghan piece was that Al Qaeda is the enemy, while Taliban is incidental. Interviewee was fine, but production obscured the message. Paranoids, nitwits, and the like can merely shrug it off as phoniness and other blather. You do not need to take on the character of “media;” you do not need to pretend to be convetional because it makes you lool phony.

  • Allen_osuno

    This war in Afghanistan is a losing proposition. We need to GET OUT!!!

  • Guest 5

    When will we get the real key issues of the so called war on Terror and the fallout consequences.
    Al Qaeda and extremist muslims are a very small minority who could not seriously damage ( in a War sense) any major developed Western nation.
    The key is remove the Jihad justification by withdrawing all military intervention in any Islamic state, and guarantee publicly and internationally Muslim majority states the right to thier religion.
    The price and quid pro quo is they Muslims respect other nations laws even though not sharia, and thier culture/people in the country to which emigrated. If you individually or collectively cannot adjust ( you may practice your religion peacefully) but not by or for or with Jihad ,totally abhorrent to western style and other religious beliefs. If not, then stay in a muslim majority religious state. Also if after that Muslim extremists continue terrorist attacks ( war /jihad) on planes, ships, innocent civilians be they Muslim or Christian ( or any other religion) and a source nation is identified ala piracy from Somalia. The answer is unconditional war or stop. You have 2 months to stop piracy and kidnapping. If not we go to outright war and destroy all your ships boats and ports and any infrastructure capable of helping that shipping recovery, until you sign an international no piracy treaty on non terrorist attacks on indirect targets likes Planes, train stations containing people who have no intention of not allowing ( provably at least) your religous beliefs.
    Continue and we Identify a source country, then counter strikes against aircraft, airports, train stations etc will be devastating Ala 9/11!! i.e. no compuction about whether political or religious targets or innocent civilians suffer in whatever numbers.
    QED the madness has to stop. The WEST and Russia and other nations still can bring about MAD ( mutually assured destruction) but as of now only one / two Muslim nations can respond but not achieve MAD.
    Come to terms with the fact that Jihad cannot be won in the 21st century, and find a way to talk the solution debate it whatever, to let us all live in peace. Not be blown up on some airplane or in some railway station or food market . You even blow up fellow muslims, something is not right here, and yes the West kills too many muslims, but see above, no more military fighting in Muslim states from the West .Cant ( rather wont stop you fighting amongst yourselves) Sunni, Shiite, Wahabbi etc up to you . The Taliban want to take over Afghanistan again, OK, and conduct stonings and executions on /in national stadiums. If the majority of Afghans are happy and do not want it stopped and actually fight back against it themselves its your life and your country. But we Westerners do not like it,but your life your country.
    The real punch line is no more aid from government source funds where we believe that any kind of human rights are being abrogated. These are UN needed resolutions but enforced.
    In each case any identified nation of “terrorism”/piracy etc” would result in all nationals in any country any where other than native country being deported back home ( eye scans and fingerprints databased), and no travel rights to such nationals internationally. Flights/ships cargo port of origin to from those countries only by the national airlines, registered shipping, that’s the most effective economic sanction, and brings reality quickly as they will starve to death in months with out international support and acceptance of the terms.
    This is simple justice not war as such, but a simple set of consequences that forces extremeists to stop
    unreasonable behaviour against 99% of the time completely innocent victims.
    Then we can all turn up 1 hour before the flight , no pat downs, Invasive Xrays and just check in show your passport once not 3/4times as of now. and more flight leave on time an business peopls can work anywhere between 3 to 6 hours more doing business on each busines trip.
    The economic cost of the so called war on terror is 2/3 times larger than the Military cost.
    Guest 5.

  • Anonymous

    Ignore the above. I thought this piece was informative, not phony.