The U.S. war in Afghanistan is beginning to wind down. As President Barack Obama promised in his State of the Union address, half of the U.S. troops there will return home by this time next year.
But many details remain hazy. For instance, what will happen with the 110,000 military contractors now stationed in the country? And how many troops will remain after the military mission officially ends in December 2014?
Numbers arenâ€™t the only uncertainty about the war, now in its 12th year. How did we end up in a nation-building quagmire with no good exit strategy? Why did we attempt to simultaneously fight two such wars in the same decade?