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May 6, 2012 11:12 AM by Matt Stafford

Congressional leaders say Taliban is stronger

WASHINGTON (AP) - The heads of the House and Senate intelligence committees say the Taliban has only grown stronger since President Barack Obama deployed 33,000 more troops to Afghanistan in 2010.

The remarks by California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Michigan Republican Rep. Mike Rogers run counter to Obama's declaration last week from Afghanistan that the U.S. had "broke the Taliban's momentum."

In a joint interview Sunday the lawmakers blamed Pakistani religious schools known as madrassas and the Pakistan-based Haqqani network for providing the Taliban with an endless supply of fighters and combat support.

Rogers said he and Feinstein agree that the first step should be to designate the Haqqani group a terrorist network and to "take aggressive steps" to disrupt their operations.

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