Afghans will go to the polls this Thursday for the second post-Taliban presidential election in the country. The likely winner is up for debate...polls commissioned by the U.S. government have President Hamid Karzai in the lead, but Ann Marlowe paints a different picture in the Wall Street Journal. One question looms large: will Taliban violence disrupt the voting? The Afghan government reportedly negotiated an election-day ceasefire agreement with the Taliban in western Afghanistan, and Afghanistan's intelligence minister boasted that this shows weakness in the Taliban's ranks. Still, we get this report from CBS's Lara Logan that the Taliban have vowed to attack voters, denying any deal had been made and that any polling places would open in areas of Taliban control in the South. And a car bomb exploded just outside NATO's Afghan headquarters in Kabul Saturday, killing seven people. Security is being tightened, but all this leads us to another question: can a country partly under Taliban control have a democratic referendum, with a fear of attacks in government-controlled territory? Faith in the Afghan government is low, due to widespread corruption...an election has to help, but, under these circumstances, how much?

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