"The change in Taliban tactics has kept up the number of civilian casualties," said the senior defense official describing the report. Even though there are fewer Taliban attacks overall, he said, the Taliban "are killing more Afghan civilians."
Predictably, resisting Afghans have avoided the areas where U.S. troops have masses and have scattered their violence around the capital and elsewhere, killing former Afghan president Burhanuddin Rabbani just this September.
Soon, our military will have the bulk of our forces hunkered down in Kabul, building dirt fortresses with guard towers to surround our unpopular junta, just to cling to the appearance of progress; just to 'stay the course' in the months before the elections as President Obama postures as 'strong' and capable on defense.
We've been in Afghanistan longer than our country fought WWII. No matter to our leaders, though. 'Freedom's' cause for occupation supporters is nothing more than a repression of one group or another within the sovereign nation we invaded into accepting our military forces' false authority over them; and cynical manipulation and control of the Afghan government Karzai lords over by the intimidation of our military occupation.
Our nation's possessive militarism in Afghanistan and elsewhere has divided our nation from within, and, from without against our restive allies. The escalated occupation has ignored whatever Afghans might regard as freedom in our insistence that their country be used as a barrier against the terror forces we've aggravated and enhanced in Pakistan. Yet, the soldiers the President insists on continuing to commit to his retreat to Kabul are mostly fighting and dying because they're not wanted there by the majority of the Afghan people. Our soldiers are fighting to control the Afghans, and they are busy fighting to get the U.S. to release that control.
According to the defense official quoted along with the new assessment, despite the obvious and enduring setbacks, "We are succeeding . . . We're going to advance our goals and draw down as we've said."
"Time is running out before the international community transfers control to Kabul by the end of 2014, and many key objectives are unlikely to be achieved by then," the report warned.
Time for the U.S. militarists to declare 'victory' and leave.