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Operation Enduring Freedom - Afghanistan

"On the security front the entire NATO exercise was one that caused Afghanistan a lot of suffering, a lot of loss of life, and no gains because the country is not secure ... I am not happy to say that there is partial security. That's not what we are seeking. What we wanted was absolute security and a clear-cut war against terrorism... The worsening of relations began in 2005 where we saw the first incidents of civilian casualties, where we saw that the war on terror was not conducted where it should have been.... in the sanctuaries, in the training grounds beyond Afghanistan, rather than that which the US and NATO forces were conducting operations in Afghan villages, causing harm to Afghan people."
Hamid Karzai, 07 October 2013

Along with protecting local Afghans and reducing violence, new efforts are focused on cutting off the funding of the Taliban and other Afghan insurgents. US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke spoke of a new thinking on the issue during a June 2009 visit to Pakistan. Holbrooke said the long-held notion that Afghanistan's illicit opium trade is the main source of funding for the insurgency is simply not true. And, he said US policy is going to reflect that reality. "If the drugs ended tomorrow, it would not have a major effect on the Taliban source of funding," said Holbrooke. "And, that's one of the reasons the United States is going to downgrade crop eradication as part of its policies in Afghanistan. We're going to upgrade interdiction. We're going to upgrade our efforts to go after the main drug traffickers. But we want to focus on where the money really comes from."

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