Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the AP on Sunday that the Taliban will likely remain a military threat in some parts of Afghanistan long after U.S. troops complete their combat mission next year.
Dempsey also said that by May or June of 2012, as Western troops pull back from Afghanistan, the Afghan military will assume the lead combat role throughout the country.
Asked whether some parts of the country will remain contested by the Taliban, Dempsey replied, "Yes, of course there will be."
However, while Dempsey only offered up a partial, and begrudging, acknowledgment of the Taliban threat post-2014, New York Times Washington correspondent, David Sanger - author of a book, which discusses among other things, the Obama administration's handling of the Afghan War - was a bit more candid, and forthcoming, with his assessment of the Taliban threat and Obama's Afghan strategy in a 2012 interview.
Sanger told CNN that one of the President's goals in Afghanistan is to keep the [Capital] city of Kabul from falling, but, he said, this "does not necessarily mean that other parts of the country might not fall into Taliban control."
Sanger added: "It seems fairly likely that a few years from now, we will see some parts of the country that are significantly under Taliban control."
However, while I, admittedly, am no expert in these matters, nevertheless, as an outsider, who is neither affiliated with the Obama administration nor the mainstream-Obama media, I am willing to be even more candid and forthcoming with my assessment of the Taliban and the future of Afghanistan.
Taking into account the recent attacks by the Taliban in the heart of Kabul, the Capital City of Afghanistan - including a suicide bombing outside the Afghan Defense Ministry in central Kabul that left nine people dead - I believe it is highly likely that the current Afghan government will fall and that the Taliban will ultimately assume control of the entire country, or, at the very, very least, wreak havoc, chaos and destruction upon the entire country.
In a separate interview on Sunday, Gen. Dempsey was asked whether he is concerned that Syria could become another Afghanistan.
"I do. I have grave concerns that Syria could become an extended conflict" that drags on for many years, he said.
Video: David Sanger interview - 2012: