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2/8/08

Is the Taliban Resurgent or not?

Air Force Times

(AFT)- "Mullen said, “In Afghanistan, we are seeing a growing insurgency, increasing violence, and a burgeoning drug trade fueled by widespread poppy cultivation.”

The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff sees a resurgence, but the Top U.S. General in Iraq disagrees: AP News

(AP)... "Asked if [he] believes the insurgency is growing, McNeill said: "I think that it's probably stayed about the same as what it was..." "We exposed ourselves to a lot more things than the force has exposed themselves to in times past," McNeill said. "And that more than anything created the increased levels of violence that are so often referred to in the news, and that people fail to realize what caused those. (There) wasn't a resurgent Taliban."

He goes on to explain that violence is increasing but the insurgency isn't, because the terrorists are becoming more desperate and US soldiers are spending more time in public. VOA News

(VOA)... "Those who use the increased levels of violence to try to make a case or an argument are generally going to get it wrong, unless they understand what is causing those increased levels of violence," McNeill said... General McNeill says many experienced Taliban leaders were killed during last year's fighting season, and that while the group is trying to recruit new members the leadership will be difficult to replace."

India Times

(Economic Times)- "The Taliban insurgency is not spreading in Afghanistan and 70 per cent of the violence last year occurred in only 10 per cent of the country, NATO has said in a report... three-quarters of Afghanistan suffered one violent incident per week. "It is becoming increasingly clear that the insurgent movement is being contained," Foss said yesterday at a news conference in the capital, Kabul."

But almost every other media is simply reporting a "resurgent Taliban." A quick google of such bad journalism: AFP, CNS News, Guardian, International Herald Tribune, Asia Times Online, Telegraph, LA Times, Reuters, Washington Post, The Independant, The Mercury, Al Jazeera, National Post, Newsweek, CBC

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