President Barack Obama’s speech on Afghanistan earlier this week moved U.S. policy in the right direction through its emphasis on placing more responsibility in Afghan hands and prioritizing a political settlement that includes the Taliban. But it struggled to clarify an implementation plan for achieving U.S. objectives. The transition plan between July 2011 and 2014, when security is handed over to Afghans, continues as two bookends with no content in between, leaving one to wonder whether the plan is to hold our breath until 2014, and hope for the best.
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