Saturday, August 31, 2013

Hope In Afghanistan?

U.S. Soldiers Find Surprise on Returning to Afghan Valley: Peace -- New York Times

NANGALAM, Afghanistan — The Americans arrived under cover of night, the static electricity from their helicopter blades casting halos of blue in the pitch black.

It was their first return to the Pech Valley — a rugged swath of eastern Afghanistan so violent they nicknamed it the Valley of Death — since the American military abruptly ended an offensive against the Taliban here in 2011 after taking heavy casualties.

But the Americans, from the First Battalion of the 327th Infantry, had not come back to fight. Instead, their visit this summer was a chance to witness something unthinkable two years ago: the Afghan forces they had left in charge of the valley then, and who nobody believed could hold the ground even for weeks, have not just stood — they have had an effect.

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My Comment: This is a surprising report. I am still skeptical on Afghanistan's long term prospects .... but this success story is a positive sign.

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