December 2nd, 2009
08:25 AM ET

Reaction from Afghans and troops in Kabul

What's interesting here is many Afghans don't know what President Obama said - they're not going to know until tonight's evening newscast.

Even the days leading to President Obama's primetime address, I asked Afghans if they're going to watch, and they said no, it's not worth getting up early in the morning to watch because they said they heard the promises before. They have yet to see tangible actions being made.

But many Afghans, if there is a timetable, are afraid at the moment just because the Taliban had time and time again said that they will wait it out, that they will not leave.

And when you talk about the U.S. troops on the ground here in Afghanistan, the majority of them welcome extra troops. They say they need them.

The volatile areas in the south, such as Helmand and Kandahar provinces, are areas that the coalition troops have been in since 2001. These are areas where they couldn't secure and hold because they didn't have the manpower.

Now they're going district to district trying to convince the Afghans that they're here to stay this time. But even now they don't know if they can do that, because there is some sort of a timetable laid out at the moment.

The Marines, the Army and the Canadians there are saying that their biggest problem is they can't convince the Afghans that they're actually here to help them build infrastructure and to help them build a society. And the Taliban keep coming back to those districts and villages and telling them they're here to stay.

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Hopeless

    There is really no hope for Afghan people as long as they have the warlords and religious leaders. First Karzai needs to go, then Dostum and all the other warlords. The country should be led by someone who truly cares about the people and spend the money on educating the population rather than buying mansions in the U.S. and Dubai.

    December 8, 2009 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  2. Ajmir

    The US exercising their military actions in Afghanistan, I don't think so the more 30000 US troops really necessary for Afghanistan. This is sort of a cold battle. God bless you Afghanistan.

    December 3, 2009 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
  3. From Afghanistan

    Wasim, fact is, the greatest civilian deaths do not come from the coalition troops, it actually comes from the insurgency. This is not an opinion, it is the factual truth, I should know–I live in Afghanistan.

    December 3, 2009 at 7:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ngongo

    Obama did promise the withdrawal of troops during his campaign. Its the Afghans themselves to decide wether they need the Americans or not and an opinion poll should be carried out by Afghan civilians to determine this

    December 3, 2009 at 4:29 am | Report abuse |
  5. Fahim Payabzai

    The Job that US could not complete in 8 years is not going to be completed in just 18 month, US wasted last 8 years without a single solid achievement Afghans are still exposed to terror, our infrastructure remains the same, and most importantly, the warlords are still in our government and none of them were prosecuted of their crimes.

    December 3, 2009 at 2:41 am | Report abuse |
  6. daffy2

    there is only two ways i see americans winning in afghanistan and you want like either one ,you either pull all the troops out an say we won and the war is over and let them fight there civil war and the taliban take over or you go in to conquer and you make afghanisstan the 51 state of the united states.the new california theres gold in them thar hills of kanderhar the let the gold rush be on we know theres gold in growing poppy.ha

    December 2, 2009 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
  7. wasim zubair

    joan the greatest civilian deaths occur from your army i dont think it means to you anything to you since your tax paying bullet atleast killed someone be it a taliban or innocent women or children. This is what western education brings to people its attitude of its not my problem or i will no stand against tyranny

    December 2, 2009 at 11:02 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Joan Doe

    Nazim, Obama did say the Taliban harbored Bin Laden, not that the Afghan people attacked us. And yes, we do need to fix our mistake. We need to not let the Taliban return and harm the women and children. We need to not turn our backs on the people in need. We need to stop looking at our watches and spend the time to CREATE not destroy as the Taliban has done and we failed to do after the Russian's were routed. I hope the American people will see that their interests are in helping Afghanistan rebuild,

    December 2, 2009 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Adi

    When will people understand? Military action is not a solution here. You kill 40 al-Quada guys and you create 400 more... its an unending cycle. America will fall down in Iraq and Afagan war if not stopped. Its a slickery downslide. Once you are on it you will go straight down. Mere presence of american soldier is unresting. Understand this.. You can not straighten out a country by military action.. especially when its Muslim world. What happened when saddam was removed from throne.. These dectators work as lids on pressurized crazy middleeast world. For bad or good.. they are essential. Whats best for America. PULL OUT.. nothing is going to get solved by having presence in Iraq and Afgan. It will bring more deaths to american citizens. think this if you can.. how many died in 9/11? More american citizens are dead since then in battle.. battle thats no ggod for america.. PULL OUT Barak... PULL OUT

    December 2, 2009 at 7:03 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Michelle M

    We are the light in the room that scares the roaches away.
    Once we leave, the roaches will come back.
    The Taliban moves from region to region running from us.
    We seem to get a handle on one problem and then another arises.
    A time table would be a great solution to bring our troops home.
    Unfortunately once we leave, the light will turn off and the roaches will be back again.
    The troop surge was a great solution for Iraq because it made all the taliban run to Afghanistan.

    I just dont see an end to this. Ultimately we will be there for at least 15 more years. I fear this is the only way to gain the trust of the people and to get their corrupt Gov and police forces to change

    December 2, 2009 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Nazim Hakimi

    I heard President Obama's speech last night and the interesting part was that when he said that America was attacked from Afghanistan on September 11th. I was wondering why he passed the blame on poor and inocent Afghans. Osama Bin Laden came to Afghanistan with U.S. dollars and anti-aircraft Stingers during the Russian invasion. This was the U.S. that has created Taliban and now the U.S. has to pay for it.

    December 2, 2009 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |