What Taliban's Return Means for U.S. Troops

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It's been almost seven years since the U.S. invaded Afghanistan and overthrew the Taliban. But today, the radical regime is making a comeback.

Now the question lingers - what does the return of the Taliban mean for American troops in Afghanistan?

CBN News reporter Chuck Holton has just returned from a month in Afghanistan, where he was embedded with U.S. troops. He joined the 700 Club recently to discuss the situation with the Taliban. Click play to watch the interview following this CBN News report.

U.S. Gains in Jeopardy

It wasn't long ago that the Taliban was in shambles. The U.S. invasion of Afghanistan inflicted heavy casualties, force its leadership into hiding and a democratic government took control.

Those gains are in danger.

More 100 U.S. Troops have been killed in Afghanistan this year - a record pace.

July marked the third straight month that U.S. casualties there increased.

It's clear the Taliban has revitalized - but how?

"What's happening in Pakistan, the ground that militants are gaining there, is very much hurting our forces in Afghanistan," terror expert Daveed Gartenstein-Ross explained.

A safe haven in the tribal regions of Pakistan is allowing the Taliban to launch attacks against coalition forces in neighboring Afghanistan.

An ambush last week killed 10 French troops and a similar assault last month killed nine American soldiers.

"It's become a huge problem for Afghanistan, it's probably the number one problem for the U.S. there, and it's becoming a problem in Pakistan proper," said Michael O'Hanlon of the Brookings Institution.

Finger-pointing

Afghan President Hamid Karzai blames Pakistan for the Taliban's resurgence.

But he admits that the Afghan government is not functioning properly and has corruption problems.

Karzai plans to run for reelection next year. In the meantime, U.S. forces will increase their presence in Afghanistan, as they draw down in Iraq.

*Original broadcast August 28, 2008.

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Erick Stakelbeck

Erick Stakelbeck

CBN News Terror Analyst

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