President Hamid Karzai said Tuesday that the people of Afghanistan no longer desire to see international forces defend their country for them.
While insurgent-caused casualties are up, US-caused civilian casualties are down. Still, it only takes a couple of high profile incidents to negatively turn public opinion.
US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates arrived Monday in Afghanistan. The visit is expected to shape decisions about the gradual US troop drawdown slated to begin this summer.
Tighter sanctions and military threats haven't swayed Iran over its nuclear program. What the West really needs is genuine rapprochement – the kind that India is especially suited to facilitate.
The deal, in which a prominent tribe has agreed to help stop Taliban attacks in volatile Helmand Province, is being compared with successful efforts in Iraq to use tribal influence against the insurgency there.
A NATO spokesman denied reports of a US proposal to expand operations along the Afghan border, where the Pakistani government is already frustrated by drone attacks.
With tough tactics and promises of security, it aims to position itself as a stronger brand of government.
Planning months in advance to soothe holiday separation, military families open presents via Skype or send care packages to deployed loved ones.
As NATO officials prepare to meet in Lisbon on Friday, Afghans are watching. Many would like to see NATO forces here take Karzai more seriously.
Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar denied reports of peace talks with the Afghanistan government, but military officials also saw signs of financial woes in his call for funding from the worldwide Muslim community.