Fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan

TG says all the public discussion about troop levels in Afghanistan is having a negative effect on the ground: For Afghans it creates low morality to continuously hear this news. That only helps the Taliban whose greatest weapon is intimidation. Individuals can create havoc in communities by sending out night letters. (What's a night letter?) Night letters are sent out to Afghan families discouraging them from sending the girls to school, threatening with violence. That dissuades them from participating in their own reconstruction efforts. (How much power does the Taliban wield in the country?) Well their power is not one of philosophical or commitment on the part of the Afghan people. Their memory of the Taliban is not a positive one. Their power is difficult because we don't know their numbers, which we don't know because they reside in mountainous areas and in Pakistan which is uncontrolled. There aren't sufficient numbers of troops to engage them. (What about Paksitan? How much can NATO do if the Taliban's resources are inexhaustible?) NATO does not have enough resources, there needs to be a better trained and larger Afghan Army and Police to work alongside them. We need to address the whole role of Pakistan in this and we may need to send troops there. (Doesn't sound like Musharraf is ready to accept any of that). He hasn't to date. I think the Pakistanis are coming around to the fact that the situation comes around to them.

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