Afghanistan

Afghanistan’s Fraught Political Transition and Implications for Its Security Beyond 2014

On Saturday, June 14, Afghanistan held its second round, run-off presidential election since no presidential candidate was able to secure at least 50 percent of the votes in the first-round election on April 5. In that first contest, the two front-runners, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah and Dr. Ashraf Ghani, won 45 percent and 31.56 percent of the vote, respectively.

Taliban Summer Offensive Shows Increasing Capability

The Taliban’s annual summer offensive in Afghanistan in 2014 can be characterized by waves of violence across the country and, in particular, a string of attacks ringing the capital, Kabul. The attacks appear mainly to target Afghanistan’s infrastructure, particularly its airports. Although the Taliban attempted to focus its efforts in June on the 2014 presidential election runoff, it was unsuccessful in derailing the elections or disrupting them to a notable degree. That period of concentrated effort lasted less than two weeks.

What’s Missing From Obama’s Counterterrorism Strategy

Source: 
Wall Street Journal
Date Published: 
2014-05-29 00:00:00

Partnership can indeed be a component of an effective strategy for countering terrorism. But partnership requires effective partners. This missing ingredient in Mr. Obama’s strategy will be its downfall.

Afghanistan: 5,000 Troops are not Enough

The White House is dropping strong hints that the number of American troops in Afghanistan after 2014 may fall below 10,000, possibly even below 5,000. Unnamed White House officials suggested to the press that lower levels of U.S. support to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) will be sufficient to contain future Taliban threats.

The Folly of Abandoning Afghanistan

Source: 
Strategika
Date Published: 
2014-04-03 00:00:00

If America's experience in Iraq offers any single, unambiguous lesson, it is the folly of just walking away. The United States must not repeat this mistake in Afghanistan. Isolation and disengagement have severely damaged American credibility and security, as can be seen most dramatically in Ukraine today.

The End of an Era? The Death of Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim

The death of First Vice President Marshal Qasim Fahim will have an even bigger impact on the aftermath of the forthcoming presidential election than on its outcome. This article now updated with information about the nomination of Mohammad Yunus Qanooni to fill his position.

The Formation of Electoral Alliances in Afghan Politics in the 2014 Presidential Season

Candidates for Afghanistan’s 2014 elections will declare their intent to run by October 6. The most prominent candidates, Zalmai Rassoul & Abdullah Abdullah, represent the two main factions that will decide the 2014 election: the Karzai-Establishment & anti-Karzai opposition.

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