Petraeus Panel to Rethink Iraq, Afghan Strategy

General assembles brain trust for 100-day review of regional efforts
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2008 2:37 AM CDT
Afghan elders carry the body of an alleged Taliban militant, who was killed by NATO air strikes.   (AP Photo/Abdul Khaleq)
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(Newser) – Gen. David Petraeus is assembling a panel of experts to carefully reconsider US strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as Pakistan, Iran and the surrounding region, reports the Washington Post. He's recruiting a handpicked brain trust of advisers from the private sector, State Department and Pentagon. The group will study the situation for 100 days, with a primary focus on Afghanistan, which Petraeus admits has been "spiralling downward."

Petraeus hopes to focus on government-led reconciliation with Taliban militants in Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to sources. "The biggest lesson of counterinsurgency is that every situation is unique. You have to be very careful to have that nuanced understanding," said Petraeus. The general oversees 200,000 American troops as head of US Central Command.