Afghanistan is just one area of confrontation in our wider struggle against political Islam, a struggle which we must win.
Afghanistan is no more important to Al Qaeda than half a dozen other countries. But it is strategically useful for AQ in generating propaganda footage of infidels fighting Muslims, and Muslims fighting back.
NATOs ill-conceived operation in Afghanistan is on the brink of failure. Support for UK and NATO forces is falling: only 45% of polled Afghans support a NATO presence in the South, down from 83% in the previous year.
Much of what NATO is doing is aggravating the problem and is making attacks on the UK and other NATO countries more likely, not less.
It is vital that Afghan territory is not used as a launch pad for future attacks; and that the Islamist minority cannot claim victory.
This can be achieved with a much smaller allied force. There is always going to be some level of insurgency in Afghanistan.
Attempts to impose central government on a country with hundreds of deeply divided and independent communities are over-ambitious and likely to fail.
We should recognise that there is no perfect answer. Afghanistan can, however, be stabilised if a reasonably honest government is set up in Kabul; if local tribal structures are supported; if we deal with those who we are not prepared to deal with today; if the regional tensions between India and Pakistan are addressed; and if a spirit of reconciliation is fostered.
These objectives are, given political will and realism, achievable. And they would bring a great saving of British lives and money.
He's right. Fighting the Nazis during WWII did lead to German air raids over British territory. If the Brits had stopped fighting the Nazis, the air raids over London and Coventry might have stopped.
The difference between liberals and conservatives is this - liberals believe in Santa Claus, and conservatives believe in God. The problem? As far as anyone knows, there is no Santa Claus. (It's certainly not St. Nick who puts presents under the Christmas tree).