June 23rd, 2010
01:57 PM ET

What's the fuss, Afghans ask about McChrystal controversy

Atia Abawi

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/WORLD/asiapcf/06/23/afghanistan.reax.general.mcchrystal/t1larg.afghanistan.mcchrystal.karzai.afp.gi.file.jpg caption="General Stanley McChrystal (left) and Afghan President Hamid Karzai at ISAF headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan, in April 2010." width=300 height=169]

Washington may be up in arms over General Stanley McChrystal's comments to Rolling Stone magazine about the U.S. mission in Afghanistan and how some of his colleagues are handling it - but some in Afghanistan are asking what the fuss is all about.

McChrystal arrived in Afghanistan last summer as the top NATO commander - but if Washington is mad at the general, his friends in Afghanistan seem to be unaffected.

Many among the local population in Kabul say that McChrystal revamped the forgotten war, putting it on a different path and instilling a counter-insurgency strategy (COIN) in an attempt to regain the trust of the Afghan people.

He instilled a new hope, they argue, for those Afghans who actually backed the war effort, also angering the Taliban - which ramped up their PR - in the battle for hearts and minds.

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