Could it be time to take Karzai's words and actions at face value, and give him what he appears to want?
At least 7,500 civilians have died in Iraq this year, the death toll surging because of the war in Syria and the failure of Sunni-Shiite reconciliation.
Two separate incidents, both carried out by Muslim separatist groups, indicate that more than four decades of religious conflict are not over.
Reversing a downward trend, civilian casualties have risen 23 percent, in part because of fighting between government forces and insurgents.
Iraq is less violent than it was and the press frequently wonders if the country could descend into war again. What if the war never ended?