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Afghanistan's cash crop: A look at opium cultivation in Afghanistan. (The Washington Times)

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Illustration: Afghanistan by Alexander Hunter for The Washington Times

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**FILE** In this April 25, 2009, file photo, Afghan farmers work in an opium poppy field in Nawa district of Helmand province, south of Kabul, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Abdul Khaleq, file)

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** FILE ** This undated photo provided by New Mark Communications via the St. Paul Pioneer Press shows Greg Mortenson, founder of the Central Asia Institute, a Montana-based organization which builds schools for girls in remote tribal areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. (AP Photo/New Mark Communications via the St. Paul Paul Pioneer Press)

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"There is no change whatsoever in the timeline" for troops to leave Afghanistan, NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen (right) said Wednesday in Brussels, where he met with Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. (Associated Press)

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Illustration: Afghanistan by Alexander Hunter for The Washington Times

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"There is no change whatsoever in the timeline" for troops to leave Afghanistan, NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen (right) said Wednesday in Brussels, where he met with Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. (Associated Press)

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** FILE ** In an April 15, 2012, file photo NATO soldiers run during a gun battle in Kabul, Afghanistan. The United States and its NATO allies are readying plans to pull away from the front lines in Afghanistan next year as President Barack Obama and fellow leaders try to show that the unpopular war is ending. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq/file)

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** FILE ** This undated photo provided by New Mark Communications via the St. Paul Pioneer Press shows Greg Mortenson, founder of the Central Asia Institute, a Montana-based organization which builds schools for girls in remote tribal areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. (AP Photo/New Mark Communications via the St. Paul Paul Pioneer Press)

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** FILE ** In an April 15, 2012, file photo NATO soldiers run during a gun battle in Kabul, Afghanistan. The United States and its NATO allies are readying plans to pull away from the front lines in Afghanistan next year as President Barack Obama and fellow leaders try to show that the unpopular war is ending. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq/file)

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Afghan President Hamid Karzai has signed laws that protect women's rights but also has made comments that have alarmed defenders of those rights. He ignited a firestorm last year when he attempted to bring all women's shelters under government control. (Associated Press)

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Gunfire and smoke is seen coming out of a building occupied by militants during a battle with Afghan-led forces in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Monday. The Afghan capital awoke Monday to a second day of explosions and heavy gunfire as Afghan-led forces worked to defeat insurgents holed up in the building in the heart of the city and another near parliament. (Associated Press)

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Afghan special forces hold their weapons after a gunbattle with insurgents near the Afghan parliament in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Monday, April 16, 2012. (AP Photo/Ahmad Jamshid)

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A NATO soldier is poised to respond at the scene of an attack by the Taliban in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Sunday. At least two Taliban were killed and five people were wounded in the capital. There were attacks in three other cities. (Associated Press)

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Smoke rises following attacks on Sunday, April 15, 2012, by Taliban militants on three neighborhoods of Kabul, Afghanistan, that are home to government buildings, Western embassies and NATO facilities. (AP Photo/AP Video)

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Afghanistan's Minister of National Defense Abdul Rahim Wardak meets April 10, 2012, with Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta at the Pentagon. (Associated Press)

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Gen. John Allen (left), the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, claps with Afghan Defense Minister Gen. Abdul Rahim Wardak on April 8, 2012, in Kabul, Afghanistan, after signing an agreement document governing night raids by American troops. (Associated Press)

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Victims of a suicide attack are transported in the back of a police pickup truck to the hospital in Guzara, Afghanistan, in Herat province, on Tuesday, April 10, 2012. (AP Photo/Hoshang Hashimi)

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**FILE** Two civilian contractors (right) in 2009 work on an AH-64 Apache helicopter in Afghanistan. (Associated Press)

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** FILE ** Marine Corps Gen. John Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, listens during a news conference at the Pentagon outside Washington on Monday, March 26, 2012. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)