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Tag Archives: Afghanistan

Worse than a Defeat

Worse than a Defeat

Was the British Army an effective force in bringing stability and order to Iraq’s Shiite heartland in Basra? Were British troops efficient and effective in confronting the insurgencies they faced in Afghanistan and Iraq? And, as a major Western military power, did they study their enemy?

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China’s New Economic Silk Road – Another White Elephant?

China’s New Economic Silk Road – Another White Elephant?

While Chinese President Xi Jinping is busy greeting world leaders this week at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing, here in the quiet, old Dutch town of Galle, Sri Lanka, Chinese tourists are visiting one of the best preserved colonial-era cities in Southeast Asia.

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On Negotiations…with Terrorists and with Congress

On Negotiations…with Terrorists and with Congress

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, a recently released prisoner of the Taliban, has become the target of one of Washington’s favorite games: shooting first and asking questions later. Much of what has been said  about Bergdahl is so blatantly partisan or so needlessly abusive as not to deserve comment. In the course of …

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Beijing Desperate to Rein in Terrorism

Beijing Desperate to Rein in Terrorism

Beijing is going all out in its efforts to rein in terrorism, following the latest attack at a morning street market in Urumqi, which killed at least 43 people and wounded dozens. The bombing in Urumqi, Xinjiang’s capital, has been blamed on five suspects, all Uighurs, the region’s most populous …

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Candid Discussions: Eric Margolis on the End of NATO Mission in Afghanistan

Candid Discussions: Eric Margolis on the End of NATO Mission in Afghanistan

Eric Margolis is an American-born award-winning and internationally syndicated columnist. With three decades of reporting from the world’s hotspots in the Middle East, Southwest and Central Asia, Mr. Margolis is considered a veteran of many conflicts. His articles have appeared in major Western and Asian newspapers. Mr. Margolis is …

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High Time to End the American Hustle of Afghanistan

High Time to End the American Hustle of Afghanistan

By Sarwar Kashmeri
It is time to stop pretending that a residual American military presence in Afghanistan can make any difference to the future of that ancient and troubled land. The future of Afghanistan will be determined, as it has always been, by the Afghans, at their own pace and in …

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Gates Sheds New Light on Obama’s Afghan Dysfunctions

Gates Sheds New Light on Obama’s Afghan Dysfunctions

My last post noted how the blockbuster memoir by Robert M. Gates reinforces the points many observers have made about the defects of the Obama administration’s national security process.  The revelations also bolster 

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Preparing to Leave

Preparing to Leave

After more than a decade of conflict, America is reducing its footprint in Afghanistan. Although it seems likely that America and Afghanistan will come to terms on a security agreement to ensure a residual force of 8,000 to 12,000 soldiers remains in country to carryout counter-terrorism missions and training for …

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Camp Victory, Afghanistan (2010)

Camp Victory, Afghanistan (2010)


This documentary is engaging in that it is a departure from the typical documentary. It’s about United States National Guard soldiers trying to train an indigenous Afghan army from mid- to late 2000s in Heart, Afghanistan. It centers on the 207th Corps of the nascent …

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U.S. Foreign Aid Spending – Too Much or Not Enough?

U.S. Foreign Aid Spending – Too Much or Not Enough?

When the average American is asked how much of the federal budget they believe is allocated to foreign aid, the response is 25 percent — twenty-five times the current amount. When Americans are surveyed on how much funding they believe should be allocated to …

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Uniform: restriction and liberation

Uniform: restriction and liberation


Depending on how you are dressed, you can signal your status, identity, job and a myriad other markers which help locate you in a sociopolitical context.
They can show your distinctiveness, or membership within a group. Many jobs require a uniform, from the armed forces …

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India and the United States: Can the Elephant Pivot?

India and the United States: Can the Elephant Pivot?

Joe Biden is in India this week, the latest effort in the Obama administration’s three-year effort to enlist New Delhi in a closer strategic partnership aimed at hedging against a rising China.   Indeed before departing Washington, Biden declared that …

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U.S. and India: The So-So Strategic Dialogue

U.S. and India: The So-So Strategic Dialogue

This year’s session of the annual U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue, which brought Secretary of State John Kerry to New Delhi two weeks ago, produced few headlines.  The gathering was preceded by low expectations as well as talk (here and here) about …

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Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria

Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria

Last week I asked, among other things, how people could expect outside intervention to bring peace and stability to Syria given the experience of Afghanistan and Iraq. That calls for some elaboration. There have …

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U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue: What Not To Do

U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue: What Not To Do

Secretary of State John F. Kerry is in New Delhi for the annual U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue.  He’s receiving plenty of good advice (examples herehere and here) on what he …

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