Officials say the Obama administration is moving ahead with plans to negotiate with the Taliban.
The U.S. is confident that talks are the best chance to end the 10-year-old war in Afghanistan.
But the military worries things are moving too fast, and intelligence agencies offer a gloomy prognosis in their latest Afghanistan report.
U.S. negotiators and Taliban representatives are working in the next week to set specific steps ahead of formal talks. A senior U.S. official says those talks, if they ever happen, would include the United States, the Taliban and the Afghan government of President Hamid Karzai (HAH'-mihd KAHR'-zeye).
The official spoke on condition of anonymity to describe sensitive diplomacy. Elements of U.S. outreach to the Taliban are also classified.