This is the intro bit:
General David H. Petraeus, in his first extended public interviews as chief U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, made news over the weekend when he argued against a hasty withdrawal of U.S. troops in July 2011 and expressed optimism that an achievement of the U.S. objectives there is possible. But Colonel Gian P. Gentile, a visiting CFR fellow who heads West Point's military history program, says there is a mismatch between U.S. President Barack Obama's limited political objectives in Afghanistan, which could be accomplished in some eighteen months, and the U.S. military's "operational objectives." These objectives are "euphemistically called counterinsurgency," he says, and could take a generation to achieve. "We have the means to tactically and operationally achieve success in Afghanistan," says Gentile, but "we become mired in the tactics and operational methods of doing counterinsurgency."I didn't know COIN was the same thing as "nation-building" but I guess you learn something everyday. The argument does strike me as a bit muddled though. Anyway, go and read it and then come back here and argue (and yes, I'm having a particularly slow day at the office).