Not all empires die in Afghanistan?

Unlike Britain and the Soviet Union in the past, America's goal in Afghanistan is not to occupy the country, but to prevent it from harboring terrorists, says Megan Ortagus of the Institute for the Study of War.

Meanwhile, calls are being made to increase forces on the ground to help those already there beat back the insurgency.

NATO's new secretary general has recently visited Afghanistan, saying the situation there is the alliance's highest priority. Speaking in Kabul, where he met the Afghani president, Anders Fogh Rasmussen said he regretted the number of civilian causalities during the war.

The unannounced trip comes as Taliban militants step up attacks across the country ahead of presidential elections later this month.