November 1st, 2010
11:04 AM ET

Petraeus on Afghanistan, Iran, Taliban strategy

CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr sat down with the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David Petraeus, for an in-depth exclusive interview. Some highlights:

Petraeus says the Taliban's momentum in Afghanistan has "broadly been arrested" in some locations. "My assessment is that the momentum the Taliban enjoyed until probably late summer has broadly been arrested in the country," Petraeus said. "It doesn't mean it's been arrested in every location in the country, but it means by and large that is the case. Read and watch more

He said he expects to be able to recommend to President Barack Obama that the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan could begin to be reduced in July 2011, but he declined to say how many troops might be headed home.  Read more on the transition, Karzai and more

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Filed under: Iran • Karzai • Petraeus
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. My Conscience

    Either you need a new English tutor, or a new therapist...

    May 3, 2011 at 11:50 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Art

    The best way to support our troops is to start the draft. Then those placing our military in harms way can share in the losses.

    November 7, 2010 at 7:39 am | Report abuse |
  3. Don

    I am opposed to both legal and illegal immigration. This country is overpopulated, and 21 million Americans are out of work.

    November 3, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Faisal Mahmood Cheema

    lets talk about facts ..petreaus is misguiding...The reason that htese months there are very few casualties ,not due to Petreaus plans are working...but because of weather...snow fall here in Afghanistan and Taliban went underground...let see in coming summer...what the reality is..Can Petreaus tell how many Tailban he has captured or killed...

    this December there will be no fight in Afghanistan ..Obama will declare victory ..because no fighting in Afghanistan (again due to heavy snow ) and will announce the withdrawal... which he will boost in next presidential Election to make fool

    November 3, 2010 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Dan in Lafayette, IN

      Let's just hope that you're right,Faisal. The only way we're going to get out of Afghanistan is by losing like we did in Vietnam and maybe the right-wing thugs in Washington will think twice before getting us into another one of their obnoxious wars!!!

      November 3, 2010 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
      • USMC Forever

        To Dan and Faisal,thank you both!!!

        November 3, 2010 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Honyak

      Your absolutely right Faisal. It's the end of the "Fighting Season" in Afghanistan.
      The Taliban are heading to their winter sanctuaries in Pakistan to sit around the fire & drink Chai until the next spring Fighting Season rolls around. They will regroup & refit during the winter while the Americans sit on their FOB's and get care packages from home. It's been this way for 9 years now, and I doubt it will ever change. Hellova way to fight a war, eh?

      November 5, 2010 at 1:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. kate2you

    they are making progress. My son is currently deployed there and those words came from him. The US at least needs to support what these men and women are doing. Yes, it is a voluntary service and yes, they are doing what they have been asked to do. More people need to show support.

    November 3, 2010 at 6:52 am | Report abuse |
  6. Shawn

    I like her. CNN is adding some nice videos in their articles.

    November 2, 2010 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |

    this is not hard to figure out, MR. Obama, GEN. Petraeus im going to break this down for you so you can understand it see how our Military divides to Army, navy, air force…, well it’s a little bit different in Middle East. Hezbollah is one of the most important and active, strong division of Taliban.
    Ahmadinejad (president wanna be of Iran) had a visit to Lebanon about two weeks ago, he also visited the leather of Hezbollah, what have been said you go figure it out.
    With all that been said, you need evidence? Ok well take a look, Iran is helping money Lebanon and Afghanistan to stand and fight with their enemies… which that would be Israel and America.

    November 2, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John boris

    The invasion of pakistan will take place soon due to the revolution that is about come to come there which will threaten US interests. There are less then 10,000 alqaeda and taliban fighters....why do you think we have 150,000 troops there!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 2, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oh Snap

      Because you like big wieners.

      November 2, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shawn

      According to CIA head, we have less then 150 Al-alqaeda man in Afghanistan and we need 150,000 troops ?

      November 2, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
      • Nicole

        I serve here now! For your info, it is more- it is about saving a dying county! We make that sacrafice here and are away from loved ones not just to protect the US, but to save innocence and ssave here

        November 3, 2010 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
      • Faisal Mahmood Cheema

        This will be a nice excuse to declare withdrawal saying there are a handful of al -Quida members.....why they did not thought earlier when they were sending so many troops.
        it will a great military success story that how 15000 Taliban fighters with Rocket propel grandees and AK-47 has defeated the so big army equipped with all the latest military hardwares.and now look for talks with those whom they used to say terrorists....and used to boost that there will be no negotiations with Terrorists.(see Bush speeches after 9-11)...
        what we should conclude from all this dirty play ..?

        November 3, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  9. Tina

    Barbara Star and numerous others need to get their hands outta their asses! What the hell is going on over there? Troops being attacked at FOBS by RPG's, small arms fire, etc. This is an endless battle, my son, many sons are sent to fight a battle that cannot be won! Period! NOT ENOUGH TROOPS!!!

    WAKE UP!!

    November 1, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bledsoe

      I totally agree with you,Tina. Thank you.

      November 2, 2010 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Tina, I agree

      Tina, I Completely Agree with you. Let's get out of these countries.

      November 2, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mogdaork

      your wrong it can be won, American public does not have the stomach for it however.

      December 10, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Share

    Watch recent interview by Jeremy Scahill "Killing Reconciliation" on Democracy Now to know the Facts about Afghanistan current situation.

    I think Petraeus is taking from OZ, when he says that we are making progress, Talking fight to Taliban, Taking fight to Taliban heartland in Kandahar, bla bla bla. The reality is Taliban gaining ground day by day. They now control 80% of Afghanistan.

    November 1, 2010 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |

      Let's just hope you're right,Share.Thanks for the optimism. Otherwise the more "successful" we are,the longer we stay and no decent person wants that!

      November 1, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nicole

      I am glad u think you understand it all- cute

      November 3, 2010 at 12:43 am | Report abuse |
  11. julian

    Looking for the next battle,the next step on his carrer,Petraeus is a bit trap(that's why he's been send there)a do or die pit
    How to win the unwinnable,how to keep his allready fake winner composure,how will he stay the dark horse off the Gop,looking for a credible candidate to reject Palin
    It seems to be impossible to reach a goal in less than one year,unless you cannot did it the past 9 years,sad to say but the situation like in iraq would be worse,the taliban,al qaeda and all the other organisation who operate in afghanistan will be there as soon as the "Surge" strategy will be over,like a bad poker player Petraeus try to cheat us a second time,won't work this time

    November 1, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Just another Joe

      Your comments made very little sense, try typing slower or even better thinking about what you want to say before you post comments. Just out of interest i am guessing English isn't your first language am i right?

      November 1, 2010 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
      • Common Sense

        Common Sense agrees with Just another Joe. I'm not going to pretend that I know a better solution to an obviously complex issue, but I'm also not going to pretend that I know what half of you are trying to say. Please try to be a bit more coherent with your rambling, thank you 🙂

        November 1, 2010 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • My Conscience

      In response to faisal and julian:


      I BET THE TWO OF YOU FEEL PRETTY SMALL RIGHT NOW, AND WITH GOOD REASON, as of May 1, 2011 in the Western World! Don't make me send ANOTHER SEAL Team in there to straighten you two out!!!!

      May 3, 2011 at 11:46 pm | Report abuse |
  12. George Patton

    What would one expect this bozo to say? Of course he's not going to admit to a stalemate,he's only going to say "we're making progress" like we've been doing for last 9 years. It never ends!

    November 1, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sanity


      It depends on what way you look at it. For the first 5-6 years in Afghanistan we tried to fight a static war, this does not work in an insurgency, only counter-insurgency efforts can defeat the insurgents. We only recently began counter-insurgency in parts of the country, too bad it has taken that long to begin counter-insurgency or COIN. COIN can take decades to be successful. Have we made progress? Yes we have. We have made more progress in the last two years then the first seven years. It is just difficult to swallow our strategy that did not work in the 1st 7 years.

      November 1, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
      • Honyak

        Sanity, for the first 5-6 years in Afghanistan...our Army was busy in Iraq. That's why the COIN effort didn't get off the ground then; the Bush team had no intention of fighting a COIN fight or building a nation out of the Afghan rubble. Everything was focused on al Qaida & Ossama, then sidelined by Iraq & Saddam. Now Obama is in charge without a clue about what to do and Petraeus is just another political hack of a general, (just re-read his quote above; how's that for some political double-speak?) who will be ready to take credit for the pullout next year. The first 7 years had no strategy other than to kill al Qaida. We have just now decided to start the COIN battle and the American public says it's time to go home.

        November 1, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
      • cindi

        Sorry Honyak, Sanity is right. Like Sanity said, it depends on what way you look at it. I agree, we have made progress in Afghanistan.

        November 2, 2010 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
      • Honyak

        Cindi, I hope your right. But I ask you this ; "Define Progress". From my limited perspective, I've only seen America/ISAF running around Afghanistan like a bunch of headless chickens. What have we actually DONE ? Do we have the will (guts) to bang this out for 20 more years? 50? How much will the people of the Western World take before they throw in the proverbial towel because it has become "to hard"? Like Sanity said; we've made more progress in the last 2 yrs than we have in the first 7. But the peasants are screaming at the Court to "Bring our boys home". We do not have the guts to stay for the long haul. We have no tangible victories to show the masses. Thus, we will be unable to sustain the effort. Cause it won't be Easy.
        See what I'm saying? We've been in Afghanistan for 9 years now. Like an old soldier once told me..."We haven't been there for 9 years ; we've been there 9 times." Each American Army Unit rotates through Afghanistan on a 1 year tour...then the next unit starts from scratch until it's tour is done. There is no cohesive plan to continue the has become a broken record of failed policy. Like I said, just a bunch of headless chickens. We have no definition of Progress.

        November 5, 2010 at 12:18 am | Report abuse |