By Jonathan Binder, CNN
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(CNN) - The end of the NATO mission in Afghanistan is nearly a year away.
That won't mean, however, that all of men and women in uniform get to come home.
General John Allen submitted plans this week to keep as many as 15,000 troops in Afghanistan after the official 2014 NATO withdrawal. But after more than 11 years of fighting there, is Afghanistan secure enough for the rest of NATO forces to leave?
Dr. Stephen Biddle, a professor at George Washington University and Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, discusses four milestones in Afghanistan during 2012, both positive and negative:
1. Transition of Afghan security forces to control 75% of Afghan security forces and not Western troops [0:57]
2. The deadly 'Green on Blue' attack that took the lives of more than 50 NATO troops – including 30 Americans [1:24]
3. An American soldier went on a killing spree of Afghan civilians [2:01]
4. The accidental burning of a Qur'an in a collection of extremist material [2:28]