The White House says the best chance to end the Afghanistan war is to compel low-ranking insurgents to lay down their guns, one at a time. But at the rate this so-called "reintegration" project is going, it could take as long as a decade to bring the fighters in from the cold.
Fewer than 800 insurgents have signed up in the year since Afghan president Hamid Karzai announced the plan. That's less than three percent of an estimated 30,000-or-so militants. And most of those fighters come from the calmer parts of the country, says British Maj. Gen. Phil Jones, the NATO official in charge of enticing low-ranking insurgents not to fight. Very few of them have actually finished a 90-day "demobilization" process -- after which the hard work at keeping them out of the war begins.