Kandahar Slips Back Into Taliban Hands

Generals give up on local officials and call for more troops
By Mat Probasco,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2009 1:25 AM CDT
A destroyed car lie crippled at the site of an explosion in the city of Kandahar province last month. At least 41 people were killed in the militant's bombings, all civilians, officials said.    (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan)
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(Newser) – Taliban forces using massive car bombs and threatening letters have slowly retaken Kandahar, reports the Washington Post. The Taliban's resurgence in Kandahar, its spiritual home, presents a complex problem for US and UN forces, both scrambling to find enough troops to stabilize the city. In many ways, Kandahar stands for the entire Afghanistan struggle. "We simply do not have enough resources to address the challenges there," said a senior US military official.

Afghanistan's second-largest city has a largely ineffective government, nonexistent public services, rampant unemployment, and police officers known as looters and kidnappers. Militants operate freely in the city. Many senior military strategists believe stopping Taliban gains will require a comprehensive counterinsurgency effort.