Government Walks Back Claim That Taliban Attacks Declined In Afghanistan

Afghanistan

The government had claimed that Taliban attacks on the US and our allies in Afghanistan had declined in 2012. Now they say never mind, that was just a clerical error. Just like the employment reports they put out every week.

The American-led military coalition in Afghanistan backed off Tuesday from its claim that Taliban attacks dropped off in 2012, tacitly acknowledging a hole in its widely repeated argument that violence is easing and that the insurgency is in steep decline.

In response to Associated Press inquiries about its latest series of statistics on security in Afghanistan, the coalition command in Kabul said it had erred in reporting a 7 percent decline in attacks. In fact there was no decline at all, officials said.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who is among the senior officials who had publicly repeated the assertion of an encouraging drop-off in Taliban attacks last year, was disturbed to learn of the error, said his spokesman, George Little.

Good grief.