Some quotes below from The Runaway General By Michael Hastings in the current issue of Rolling Stone magazine.
The quotes are below, and there are more to be found in Huffington Post articles, such as this one
The most interesting part of all this is that it's a discussion of tactics, but whenever the matter of strategy comes up, nobody seems to know - while all the time it's very obvious: our military is in Afghanistan precisely because the people who really pull the strings - the Neocon gang and their handlers in AIPAC and Tel Aviv, the people who brought us the military invasion of the Middle East in the first place, will not permit our troops to come home, because when they are pulled out, they wouldn't go back - and that will leave our "friend" Israel without the military muscle it needs to establish authority in the region. So our troops are parked in Afghanistan until the Next Big War, which is waiting to be sparked by the gang. That is, NOBODY thinks Afghanistan is a war that can be won (as this article points out several times), yet NOBODY is looking at the big picture of why we're really there in the first place.
""Afghanistan is not in our vital interest – there's nothing for us there." says Marc Sageman, a former CIA case officer who has extensive experience in the region.
"They are trying to manipulate perceptions because there is no definition of victory – because victory is not even defined or recognizable," says Celeste Ward
After nine years of war, the Taliban simply remains too strongly entrenched for the U.S. military to openly attack. The very people that COIN seeks to win over – the Afghan people – do not want us there. Our supposed ally, President Karzai, used his influence to delay the offensive, and the massive influx of aid championed by McChrystal is likely only to make things worse. "Throwing money at the problem exacerbates the problem," says Andrew Wilder, an expert at Tufts University who has studied the effect of aid in southern Afghanistan. "A tsunami of cash fuels corruption, delegitimizes the government and creates an environment where we're picking winners and losers" – a process that fuels resentment and hostility among the civilian population. So far, counterinsurgency has succeeded only in creating a never-ending demand for the primary product supplied by the military: perpetual war. There is a reason that President Obama studiously avoids using the word "victory" when he talks about Afghanistan. Winning, it would seem, is not really possible. Not even with Stanley McChrystal in charge. "