Will an Afghan Surge Work? Skeptics See Trouble

Homegrown insurgency different from Iraq's: analysts
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser User
Posted Sep 3, 2008 5:10 PM CDT
An Afghan man looks at burning materials set ablaze by angry villagers after an alleged raid by foreign and Afghan forces conducted by U.S. troops in Kabul Monday.   (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq)
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(Newser) – McCain and Obama rarely agree on foreign policy, but both are pushing for a mini-surge of about 10,000 troops in Afghanistan to rein in the Taliban. Will the Iraq model work here? The mountainous terrain, raging US suspicion, a porous border with Pakistan, and the challenge of telling apart homegrown militants from civilians raise serious questions, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Analysts say Afghanistan’s insurgency is different from Iraq’s. Here, the insurgency is more rural, recruits are easier to find, and winning over the Pashtuns has proved a challenge. Applying Iraq’s surge tactics may even backfire. "If they put more US troops in my village, there will be more bloodshed," says an Afghani from a province bordering Kabul.