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War in Afghanistan, Article Review Example

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Words: 317

Article Review

In a recent article on the war in Afghanistan in The New York Times, “U.S. Is Gaining in Afghanistan, General Writes,” General Petraeus assessed the state of the war more positively than President Obama had done in December. He insists that we are on the “cusp” of taking control on “every front” (Rubin). He also was very insistent that it will need a strong effort both militarily and in civilian efforts to keep Afghanistan from being a haven for terrorism. The article points out that while militarily, General Petraeus’s optimistic view is possibly justified, when it comes to the task of bringing a strong, responsible civil government for Afghanistan, the cost is going to be very high, and the outcome is uncertain. Still, General Petraeus indicates that he thinks by 2014 the Afghani troops can take the lead of maintaining security in the area (Rubin).

The Washington Post article “Petraeus Offers Optimistic Assessment of War in Afghanistan” addressed General Petraeus’s letter to the troops in a similar vein, but pointed out that “Petraeus’s optimism…is not widely shared among NATO diplomats or U.S. military officials” (Rubin). This article claims that  half of Afghanis working within the government are Taliban sympathizers and suspicious of international motives toward Afghanistan. While Petraeus believes that there are signs that the Taliban insurgents are cracking apart under the military pressure, this is not supported by reports from the CIA. One Harvard researcher believes internal power struggles within the Taliban are not a positive sign for peace. Finally, the Afghanistan NGO Safety Office insists that optimistic assessments of security in Afghanistan are intended primarily to shape world public opinion rather than reflecting reality (Partlow).

References

Partlow, Joshua. “Petraeus Offers Optimistic Assessment of War in Afghanistan.” The Washington Post. 25 January 2011; 2:28 PM. Web. Retrieved from: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/25/AR2011012503532.html

Rubin, Alissa J. “U.S. Is Gaining in Afghanistan, General Writes.” The New York Times. 25 January 2011. Web. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/26/world/asia/26petraeus.html

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