Clint Douglas is wary:
Our efforts in Afghanistan have never been a priority, lacking both urgency and focus, something that was frustratingly obvious when I deployed there back in 2003. The latest trend points to an American expansion of operations into western Pakistan. The most recent involves a Predator drone strike on a madrassa run by Jalaluddin Haqqani, an infamous Taliban commander. This on the heels of other Predator strikes and a raid deep inside Pakistan by American and Afghan troops marks a significant escalation.
I have no problem with denying our enemies the secure rear areas that they have enjoyed in Pakistan, however, the consequences of these operations cannot be overstated. Pakistani madrassas have always driven the fighting in Afghanistan. They are already flooding Afghanistan with both fighters and suicide bombers. Given that attacks on Pakistani soil have and will result in civilian casualties, this trend can only significantly accelerate. There could be a pay off to all of this if we and our allies had enough troops to secure Afghanistan itself, but we don't and won't for the immediate future.
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