Even before Osama bin Laden's killing, the Taliban were softening their image while the US, Pakistan, and Afghanistan set the stage for talks. Now the US must decide if it's worth years of further military and diplomatic effort to hammer out an agreement.
China’s plan to build two nuclear reactors in Pakistan has prompted concern about nuclear proliferation. The two nations may aim to counter mutual rival India, which signed a nuclear deal with the US last year.
Despite a new poll showing firm public support, the deaths of eight troops in 24 hours last week is raising fresh questions about the end goals of the war.
Some see demise, but others cite enduring signs of US power.