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The Hamilton Spectator
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Tuesday September 22, 2009
Canada is backing calls for an overhaul of the failing Afghan mission, but likely won't be around to ensure the success of a new strategy that appears to be based on its own counter-insurgency efforts.

Top Canadian military and government officials were briefed on a grim U.S. report, leaked yesterday, that said insurgents in Afghanistan have the momentum and benefit from official Afghan corruption and ineptitude as well as the coalition's record of civilian casualties.

Gen. Stanley McChrystal, commander of the 100,000 U.S. and NATO forces in the country, said those facts have sparked a "crisis of confidence" in the Afghan government and international troops that is driving fearful locals into Taliban hands.

"Failure to gain the initiative and reverse insurgent momentum in the near-term (next 12 months) while Afghan security capacity matures risks an outcome where defeating the insurgency is no longer possible," McChrystal wrote in an Aug. 30 report published in The Washington Post yesterday.

The key to the new U.S. strategy is finding more international and Afghan forces to disrupt and clear insurgent strongholds, then staying behind to provide security, aid and economic opportunities to locals. It would change the face of NATO troops from temporary invader to protector and friend. Continued....

Can U.S. win war the Canadian way?
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