One hears again and again Afghans say that the Taliban may not be liked but that the US is distrusted, even hated
Patrick Cockburn – The Independent 18/12/10
During the mid-1960s, America's goal during a crucial stage in the Vietnam war was to defeat the enemy militarily. But it had no realistic political strategy to underpin the goal, and it was this which ultimately led to failure.
America's strategy in Afghanistan is now suffering from a similar weakness. Barack Obama made the edgy claim this week that the US army is stabilising the military situation, but neither he nor his national security advisers show any signs of understanding the speed at which, politically, the US is losing ground.
Again and again in Kabul one hears Afghans say that the Taliban may not be liked, but that the Afghan government and its US allies are increasingly distrusted, even hated, by the mass of the population.