A Strategic Analysis of Operation Enduring Freedom
This chapter contends that the United States' inability to conclude the war in Afghanistan has been a direct consequence of its political aim. Policy-makers intended Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) to achieve a state of perpetual prevention that not only eliminated terrorist sanctuaries but also denied terrorists the possibility of sanctuary in the future. Attaining this goal required an open-ended commitment of American landpower, until such time as a new Afghan political order could prevent terrorist safe havens from reemerging. However, US policy-makers repeatedly planned for the termination of the military campaign rather than the achievement of its political objective.Consequently, the United States never developed a strategy for achieving OEF's desired end state.
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