May 31, 2014

We Have the Wrong Afghan Friends

Anand Gopal, New York Times

The Associated Press

Bear in mind that Azizullah is not a member of the Afghan army. He does not work for the Afghan National Police. He is not, in fact, under the authority of the Afghan government at all. Instead, his militia, which has been supported by the Special Operations Forces, is part of a network of semi-independent rural paramilitary groups that owe their funding, weapons and very existence to America’s war on terror. By backing this network, the United States is fostering an environment of lawlessness and impunity, exacerbating Afghanistan’s longstanding problems, and creating fertile ground for the Taliban insurgency to survive. Using such strongmen seems to run counter to the doctrine laid out in 2006 in a much publicized Army/Marines counterinsurgency manual, which emphasized...

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TAGGED: Afghanistan


May 28, 2014
America's 'Might and Right' Foreign Policy
President Barack Obama
I believe that a world of greater freedom and tolerance is not only a moral imperative; it also helps keep us safe. But to say that we have an interest in pursuing peace and freedom beyond our borders is not to say that every... more ››
May 29, 2014
A Time-Limited Foreign Policy
David Ignatius, Washington Post
President Obama's measured defense of his foreign policy at West Point on Wednesday made many cogent points to rebut critics. Unfortunately, the speech also showed that he hasn't digested some of the crucial lessons of his... more ››
May 30, 2014
Emptiness at West Point
Charles Krauthammer, National Review
Is this how a great nation decides matters of war and peace — to help one party and polish the reputation of one man? As with the West Point speech itself, as with the president’s entire foreign policy of retreat, one can... more ››
May 30, 2014
Imagining President McCain's Foreign Policy
Timothy Egan, NY Times
The map of McCain’s wars is worth considering as a what-if had the would-be vice president Sarah Palin and her running mate in 2008 prevailed. McCain continues to play quick-draw commander in chief to this day. He said he’d... more ››
There is a difference between an ending that falls short of total victory and one that comes with a very high risk of defeat, as this plan does. By committing to withdraw a specific number of U.S. troops at a specific time, Obama... more ››