“The conflict in Afghanistan has devolved into a shadow war pitting what the U.S. calls “hunter-killers” from Delta Force, SEAL Team Six and the Rangers against militants from the Taliban and its affiliates, military officials told the National Journal. The Pentagon has been generally quiet about their shift in strategy, as they insert elite commando units on the ground in anticipation of the withdrawal of conventional forces from Afghanistan set to begin mid-summer. During his testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee in late March General David Petraeus did allude to upping the tempo of targeted raids, pointing out that, “In a typical 90-day period, precision operations by U.S. special-mission units and their Afghan partners alone kill or capture some 360 targeted insurgent leaders.”
ISAF officials also indicated the ongoing strikes in the AfPak border region have made substantial progress against the al-Qaeda-linked Haqqani Network by disrupting their ability to plan new attacks and resupply militants inside Afghanistan.Not to mention, the pressure brought on by these raids has created tension between different echelons within the insurgency, as Taliban foot soldiers grow weary of risking their lives in Afghanistan while their commanders live comfortably in Pakistan hideaways.
"According to the US Army counter-insurgency manual re-written by General David Petraeus, a ratio of one soldier to 40 or 50 inhabitants (20 to 25 per 1000) is required to defeat an insurgency. The population of Afghanistan is now about 33,609,937 (July 2009 est.),* meaning that at least 672,181 soldiers would be necessary for success. NATO deploys approximately 130,000 soldiers in Afghanistan. So... we're about 542,180 soldiers short of the number our own commander claims are necessary to "win." We cannot win. We will inevitably lose. And you don't have to take my word for it. Just ask General David Howell Petraeus, who was responsible for US military operations in 20 countries from Egypt to Pakistan, including Operations "Iraqi Freedom" and "Enduring Freedom," the ridiculously inappropriate name for our brutal occupation of Afghanistan, and now commands our valiant efforts in Afghanistan. We cannot win. We will inevitably lose. Ain't that a hoot!?"