Not pretty:

Whatever the explanation, for British diplomats to be communicating to the French that the mission in Afghanistan is futile, while back stateside, members of our military are calling those assessments defeatist, means that we've reached a pretty large divide in terms of expectations, one which the next president will have to address."

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.