Even as the Obama adminstration agonizes over deploying more troops to Afghanistan, the Afghan public is growing increasingly negative about the US presence in their country. Doubting that the Taliban can be defeated, most agree that the government should negotiate with insurgents, the New York Times reports, and they see Americans as occupiers who have accomplished little.
“What have the Americans done in eight years?” a pharmacists asks the Times. “Americans are saying that with their planes they can see an egg 18 kilometers away, so why can’t they see the Taliban?” The lack of US success against insurgents has bred rampant conspiracy theories about US wanting to prolong the fight. “In the first days of the war, the Americans defeated the Taliban in just a few days,” says a student. “Now they have more than 60,000 forces and they cannot defeat them.”