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PLEDGE Taliban to Retake Afghanistan: Report Aref Yaqubi, AFP / Getty Images

Taliban to Retake Afghanistan: Report

U.S. out, Taliban in? A NATO classified report says the Taliban is confident it will regain control of Afghanistan once foreign forces leave the country. U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday that combat operations will end in the nation in 2013. The Taliban believes it has the strength, motivation, and efficiency to retake power—though it has faced heavy losses since 2011. NATO officials said the document exists but downplayed its importance. The report also says the Taliban has not split from extremist groups. Afghan Taliban say they have not started peace negotiations with the international community—specifically the Americans.

February 1, 2012 8:25 PM