With the sacking of General Stanley McChrystal from the command of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan with General David Petraeus, the important issue of what exactly are the goals of the U.S. in Afghanistan and is it working have taken deserved focus over the past week.
In one of his best interviews he's ever done in hosting the NBC franchise Meet the Press, host David Gregory pressed one of the biggest hawks in the U.S. Senate, Arizona Republican John McCain, about the war.
MR. GREGORY: I have a question that keeps nagging me about the enemy, about the Taliban.
SEN. McCAIN: Yeah.
MR. GREGORY: The United States is engaged in working with the Afghan central government to recruit Afghan soldiers. Why do we have to recruit Afghan soldiers? Who's training the Taliban? Nobody has to recruit them. They're out there fighting for, you know, what they see as a future. Which is, by the way, is a dark, terrorist, annihilist future. Nevertheless, they don't have to be recruited, and yet we're in this position where we're trying to recruit Afghan soldiers.
SEN. McCAIN: You know, that's a very good question. And it's clear that the Taliban is a very extremist and very fanatical element, and I think this is true with all insurgencies. But I think you also find that the majority of the people in Afghanistan do not want the return of the Taliban. They're afraid, though, that when the United States leaves that there will be assassination squads going around and taking care of those who cooperated with the government and the Americans. Look, Karzai is not doing the things we want him to do. I don't think there's any doubt about that in many respects..