Afghan shooting raises questions about US course in country

A U.S. soldier's shooting of more than a dozen Afghan civilians deepened questions on Sunday about what the United States can accomplish in Afghanistan before it withdraws, as Washington rushed to contain the damage from the startling rogue attack.

President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta spoke to Afghan President Hamid Karzai by telephone and offered condolences for the attack, in which a U.S. soldier left his base in southern Afghanistan and began a middle-of-the-night shooting spree that local officials said killed 16 civilians, including nine children and three women.

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