Under the headline, “U.S. Soldiers Find Surprise on Returning to Afghan Valley: Peace”, the New York Times reports about how
The main road leading in the Pech is now drivable, to a point, and rockets no longer rain down constantly on the base the Americans had left the Afghans. Local residents said they felt safer than they had in years.
“Man, you couldn’t walk this road without getting lit up,”said Staff Sgt. Benjamin Griffiths, amazed as he and about a dozen soldiers surveyed one area the day after their arrival.
The Times then adds,
No one is exactly sure how the Afghan forces have managed to make some gains that eluded the Americans for so many years in the Pech Valley.
But the article offers some clues as you continue down the page:
…the absence of foreign troops as an irritant…
“When Americans were here and were driving around or patrolling the area, nobody looked at them as friends or liberators,” said Hajji Yar Mohammed, a tribal elder in nearby Manogai District. “Everyone in the villages was trying to fight them for the sake of jihad.”
Should it really be that surprising that when foreign military occupiers stop trying to kill people and instead cease their violence and leave that the result is more peace?