WASHINGTON - The effort to bring security to Afghanistan depends more on building an effective government than defeating the insurgency, an American expert says. Stephen Biddle, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, says victory in Afghanistan is achievable, but only if security gains are supported by an effective govt. We can keep patient on life support by providing security assistance indefinitely, Biddle says, but if you dont get an improvement in governance, youll never be able to take the patient off the ventilator. US President unveiled a revamped war effort for Afghanistan in a push to bring modest security to the country ahead of national elections scheduled for Aug 20. Military planners are considering a new way forward based on concerns over mounting civilian casualties and from lessons learned during the counterinsurgency campaign in Iraq. The renewed strategy for Afghanistan relies in part on courting moderate elements of the Taliban and other anti-American factions. But Biddle warns that coalition forces may have to forfeit some parts of the country to insurgents while the national government and military grow. Youre going to have to make the hard choice about where youre going to contest the ground and where youre not, he says. Meanwhile, the new commander of US and Nato-led troops in Afghanistan says reducing civilian casualties in Afghanistan will be his top priority. General Stanley McChrystal says civilians dying from Nato airstrikes and from bombings by Taliban insurgents is unacceptable and will be reduced, but lives of soldiers must also be considered, the BBC reported Saturday. Saying he would love to say wed get to zero, McChrystal told the British broadcaster, Its very hard because its a balance for the young soldier on the ground, who is in combat. One of the assets that he has that might save his life might be air power or indirect fire from artillery or mortars and we dont want to take away that protection for him. Concern about widespread civilian deaths in Afghanistan were heightened by a United Nations report indicated that the number of civilians killed so far this year had risen 24 per cent on the same period last year. Asked by the BBC about the possibility of instituting peace talks with moderate elements of the Taliban, McChrystal reportedly said the US was willing to talk to anyone seriously seeking a political solution in Afghanistan.