Afghanistan - Marjah first salvo

2010-02-21 20:45

Washington - The US general who oversees the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq says the current battle around the southern Afghan town of Marjah is the opening battle in a long campaign.

Gen David Petraeus says the campaign probably will last 12 months to 18 months and is part of the revised US strategy for fighting insurgents in Afghanistan.

Petraeus tells NBC television's Meet The Press that he has no estimate for how long the Marjah operation will last. The battle is in its second week and fighting appears to be going more slowly than some had expected.

Petraeus says that just like in Iraq, US forces expect a fight when they go into places that the enemy has considered sanctuaries.