American troops return the fire of Taliban gunmen during the major and ongoing offensive in the Helmand province of Afghanistan.
President Barack Obama has said that he hopes this offensive will succeed where prior coalition initiatives, including the so-called "troop surge," have failed or have been met with limited success.
Fortunately for Obama, the offensive is seen by many as a rare bright spot in the continuing war in Afghanistan; reports from the front have been generally positive. Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the general in charge of the war in Afghanistan, has publicly stressed his commitment to a "combination victory," desiring a military and social win among the Afghan people.
By turning public enmity toward the Taliban and away from coalition forces, McChrystal seems to be setting up a perfect storm of victory that will leave Afghanistan free of terrorist governance and an all-important ally in the Middle East. Let's hope he's correct.