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Tag Archives: Taliban

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This is smart analysis. The obsession with the idea of an Afghan surge just doesn’t make sense to me. Why are we focusing on the major urban areas in Afghanistan, when 3/4 of the population lives in rural areas? Safe haven myths aside, wouldn’t an ‘urban’-centric COIN policy leave basically the vast majority of Aghanistan […]

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Macabre But Good News

As I hinted at in my last post, the spate of violence in Pakistan can actually be seen as a good thing (the wanton death and destruction aside). This piece in today’s New York Times demonstrates that Pakistan is facing the prospect that “the Taliban, Al Qaeda and militant groups once nurtured by the government […]

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Militant Hubris

For the last eight years, Pakistan has been playing a double-game. Despite considerable US pressure, Pakistan declined to totally give up Al-Qaeda and allied Taliban militants, who had been long supported and used by the Pakistani Army and intelligence services as regional proxies against India. As long as the militants stayed out of the business […]

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Domestic Agenda: Battling Terrorism

The War on Terror marks challenging times for Pakistan. With this weeks military incursion into northern areas to combat terrorism, increasing drone attacks, suicide bombings and a crippled economy, cooperation in our war on terror looks increasingly domestic for Pakistan.

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Defeating Terrorism with Development

United States Senate passes the Kerry-Lugar bill tripling foreign aid to Pakistan for “sustainable development” purposes and counterterrorism/counterinsurgency assistance. This comes as both the United States and Pakistan struggle in defeating terrorism in the region. The bill specifies up to $1,5,000,000 through 2013 annually as President Obama revamps our strategy in dealing with the Af-Pak quagmire.

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Film Review – 'Fixer: The Taking of Ajmal Naqshbandi (2009)'

Film Review – 'Fixer: The Taking of Ajmal Naqshbandi (2009)'

Fellow FPA blogger of Global Film Review, Sean Patrick Murphy has reviewed a recent Afghan film called the ‘Fixer’. Here it is!: This film paints a grim picture of life in Afghanistan.  It starts with Naqshbandi’s relationship with American journalist Christian Parenti. Naqshbandi is also a journalist and is called a “fixer” because he facilitates […]

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Intricacies of the Afghan Elections

Pakistan has a deep interest in seeing stable, peaceful democratic processes in Afghan elections this week. Islamabad’s insistence on allocating resources to uprooting domestic factions and maintaing troops along the Indian border rather than focusing directly on fighting terror in Afghanistan do not mean they are uncommitted to stability in Afghanistan. Rather, Pakistan is better equipped and rightfully focused on fighting domestic turmoil and given current Indo-Pak relations, must keep forces on the Indian border. Also, Pakistan has a profound interest in seeing their large refugee population repatriate to Afghanistan, which can only happen if elections are successful and lead to a more stable, democratic Afghanistan.

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"Life, Death, and the Taliban"

A new multimedia report worth taking the time to look at is GlobalPost’s “Life, Death, and the Taliban”, now on GlobalPost’s website. “It’s an ambitious multimedia project that brings together a team of writers, photographers and videographers reporting from on the ground in Afghanistan and Pakistan as the battle against the Taliban heats up on […]

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Key Militant Dead ?

Breaking news informs us that Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud is “believed dead when a drone fired two Hellfire missiles along the Afghan border”. U.S. and Pakistani officials have yet to confirm the reports let alone acknowledge this as a triumph against Tehrik-e-Taliban, the organization Mehsud headed. Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik expressed “cautious optimism” while […]

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What the World Thinks of the NATO/US in Afghanistan

Excuse me World, how are you feeling about the NATO presence in Afghanistan?  What are your thoughts about a possible return to rule by the Taliban? While WorldPublicOpinion.org asked the world, well almost 65% of it (actually just a few thousand scattered people), to share their thoughts on such questions in a recent survey last […]

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Defining the U.S. "Surge" for Pakistan

“Pakistan Objects to U.S. Plan for Afghanistan War” reads a New York Times article yesterday updating us on our foreign policy. The article forewarns of “fissures” in the U.S. Pakistan alliance at this critical moment when President Obama sends additional troops to the region. The article specifically outlines Pakistan’s insistence on maintaining forces along the […]

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Three's Company-Afghanistan Style

Here are three Afghan-related pieces I read recently that I want to comment on: 1. MountainRunner.us, Tom Broun Tom Broun, a US military officer assigned to NATO, discusses the implications of the ongoing ‘Why Afghanistan Matters’ contest being hosted on Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube on a guest post for Mountainrunner.us.  Broun analyzes the media coverage […]

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Strike of the Sword

Just a day after most US troops vacated Iraqi cities, signaling the beginning of the end of the American military presence in Iraq, American forces launched one of their largest offensive campaigns in Afghanistan.  Approximately 4,000 marines partnered with helicopters and armored convoys made a major push into the Taliban dominated Helmand Province yesterday in […]

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Holbrooke Mike'd Up

Holbrooke Mike'd Up

A couple days ago, my US  State Department daily feeder cooked me up this press conference by US Afghan/Pakistan Envoy Richard Holbrooke. The Q & A, though centered on Holbrooke’s most recent trip to Pakistan and the Gulf States, held several interesting items regarding Afghanistan and the nascent Obama administration strategy for the region. Right […]

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Air Strikes to Pierce Your Heart

Reports are slipping out from the US military’s official investigation into the accidental bombing of civilians in Afghanistan’s Farah Province last month and it looks like the US is admitting some mistakes.  The investigation, according to the LA and NY Times, acknowledges that all rules of engagement were not followed during the incident, including reports […]

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