I'm of the opinion the wars in Iraq and Astan are one in the same. That being to help rid the world of people who would like to bring harm to the USA or its Allies.
I also understood what my President meant when he said it would be a long hard struggle in doing this.
The problem with fighting terrorists with the Military is that, for the most part, it is not the right tool for the job. We have proven that in Afghanistan. With a full multinational force, we "defeated" the Taliban, threw them out of the country. According to Pentagon estimates, they are as strong as ever.
In Iraq, there was no AQ when we Invaded. There was no civil war. Now we have both, although the civil war appears to be in a lull, which is good. While AQ is still in the country, Pentagon estimates state that worldwide they are as strong as ever. In other words, we are at square one.
The reason for that is that you don't fight a civilian terrorist organization with a military. In the history of warfare, it has never worked successfully on any scale.
The only way to fight terrorists is through a worldwide network of intelligence and police agencies that break apart cells in the many countries where terrorists work from. You only use Military for very specific, very controlled acts [training camps, weapons caches, etc]. That has proven to work very well [when did you last hear of the Red Brigade?].
I am not saying you don't go after terrorists, YOU DO. You just don't use the Military as the primary focus of the endeavor.
THAT is the primary issue I have with our Invasion of Iraq and the "War on Terror". It is a misfocused action. It does nothing to keep you son's children from having to address terrorists. It also does nothing to stop harm from the US or it Allies.