The knowledgeable and reliable website www.stratfor.com, 28 Oct 2010, carried a report, “Notions of Progress and Negotiation in Afghanistan,” from The Washington Post, that the U.S. intelligence community is largely of one mind when it comes to Afghanistan: The Taliban are suffering only fleeting setbacks while maintaining their resilience and ability to re-establish and rejuvenate themselves. This makes for a rather stark contrast to the portrait U.S. Gen. David Petraeus and others have been attempting to paint of progress in Afghanistan, and particularly against the Taliban, ahead of the White House’s December review of the efficacy of the counterinsurgency-focused strategy being pursued.
Stratfor.com went on to report:
“These claims of progress come down to several main themes: First, a concerted special operations forces-led effort to capture or kill senior Taliban leadership is achieving results; second, core Taliban turf is being seized and their sanctuaries are being rolled back into deeper and more isolated corners of Afghanistan (as well as across the border in Pakistan) – essentially, the Taliban have been robbed of momentum and initiative; third, the Taliban are negotiating – with the implication that they have no choice but to negotiate.
The United States has no prospect of defeating the Taliban with the troops, resources and time it is willing to dedicate to the conflict.”
Could not say it any better myself.