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  • Author: James Dobbins
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Last summer, in response to a directive from Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey, the Joint Staff issued a short summary of lessons learned from the past decade of military operations. The document, entitled Decade of War, Volume 1 frankly and cogently acknowledges mistakes made over this period, and particularly during the first half of the decade, that is to say between the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001 and the surge of troops into Iraq in early 2007. Among the admitted deficiencies were the failure to adequately grasp the operating environment, a reliance on conventional tactics to fight unconventional enemies, an inability to articulate a convincing public narrative, and poor interagency coordination. The document is testimony to the capacity of the American military for self-criticism and eventual correction, albeit not always in time to avoid costly setbacks.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America
  • Author: Jeff Rice
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Fred Kaplan's The Insurgents is a highly successful and compelling intermingling of three stories: the rise and eventual fall of General David Petraeus; the intellectual history of counterinsurgency; and the broadening of the learning culture within the United States Military during the Iraq war. Indeed, the heroes of the book are the “insurgents” within the U.S. Army who all but overthrew the dominant paradigm of kinetic warfare in favor of ideas derived from England and France during the end of the colonial era.1 Kaplan's book picks up on the story told by Tom Ricks in The Gamble2 about how this intellectual insurgency transformed the way the U.S. fought the war in Iraq, preferring the counterinsurgency (COIN) approach to protecting civilians from insurgents and lowering their casualty rate, and building alliances in order to reduce the number of insurgents. For Kaplan this is nothing short of a profound alteration of the American way of war, one that caused enormous consternation amongst certain sectors of the military who were wedded to a more conventional approach to war.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America
  • Author: M. Konarovsky
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: The joint American and NATO campaign in Afghanistan which has been going on for over a decade now became the Alliance’s largest and most expensive operation. It has already sucked in over $1 trillion, claimed over 3 thousand lives (over half of them American) and left over 100 thousand wounded. As the hardest psychological test for NATO it triggered talks about its systemic crisis.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, NATO, War, Budget
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Robert Zoellick
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Foreign Affairs
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: In 2007, the World Bank was in crisis. Some saw conflicts over its leadership. Others blamed the institution itself. When the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the cornerstone of what became the World Bank Group, was founded in 1944, poor and war-torn countries had little access to private capital. Sixty years later, however, private-sector financial flows dwarfed public development assistance. “The time when middle-income countries depended on official assistance is thus past,” Jessica Einhorn, a former managing director of the World Bank wrote in these pages in 2006, “and the IBRD seems to be a dying institution.” In roundtable discussions and op-ed pages, the question was the same: Do we still need the World Bank?
  • Topic: War, World Bank
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Japan, Europe
  • Author: Jasper Humphreys
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: It is a sad and startling fact that the second highest segment of global illicit commerce is in wildlife, dead or alive; in May 2012 the average price for rhino horn was higher than that of either gold or cocaine at US$60,000 per kilo.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: James Franklin Jeffrey
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: The 2011 transition from a US military-centric American presence in Iraq to a diplomatic lead, requiring the build out of already the largest US embassy since Vietnam, was an extraordinary political and logistic al effort, all but unparalleled in State Department history. The transition's success and its many challenges provide lessons for both the upcoming Afghanistan transition and 'expeditionary diplomacy' generally. It provides a model for diploma tic primacy in a conflict environment, but also cautionary lessons on the limits of diplomatic engagement in a war zone.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Vietnam
  • Author: Daniel Lewis
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: If ideologies that inspire violence are not overcome by force of persuasion, they will only be overcome by force of arms. Al-Qaeda's ideas continue to take root in new and diverse soil. Where they do, violence, destabilization, and devastation are the predictable results. During the last eleven years, America and her allies have waged war on al-Qaeda the organization. War has not been waged on al-Qaeda the idea. The result has crippled al -Qaeda's tactical cap abilities in Afghanistan and Pakistan, but has allowed for its transnational presence to flourish. To engage al-Qaeda the idea, the foremost warriors needed are state and public diplomats whose weapons are far more subtle than bombs and bullets.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, America
  • Author: Leah Farrall
  • Publication Date: 03-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Foreign Affairs
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Al Qaeda is stronger today than when it carried out the 9/11 attacks. Accounts that contend that it is on the decline treat the central al Qaeda organization separately from its subsidiaries and overlook its success in expanding its power and influence through them.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Thomas de Waal
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: The Nixon Center
  • Abstract: The typical vision of Chechnya: a violence-filled land of terrorists fighting for independence from the Kremlin's iron grip. The reality is a land torn between nationalism and a Russian civic identity.
  • Topic: Nationalism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, Chechnya
  • Author: Reza Sanati
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations
  • Institution: Prof. Bulent Aras
  • Abstract: Within the coming year, the American led-NATO mission will begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan. Though the decrease in troop levels in the short-term has been expected, the final date wherein all American and NATO troops leave the country is still a matter of heated debate, primarily for two reasons: the inconclusive steadiness of the present Afghan regime and the uncertainty of what a post-withdrawal Afghanistan would like. With this in mind, this article intends to explore both the logic of NATO intervention and the subsequent occupation of that war-torn country. It examines the primary reasons why stability and progress within Afghanistan have been elusive, the current debate amongst policy makers regarding the steps ahead, and finally proposing an alternative model that proposes a new US and NATO regional strategy that places the burden on Afghanistan stability and reconstruction on neighbors who share the larger NATO goal of a self-sufficient and stable Afghan government. Accordingly, the most potentially successful NATO approach towards Afghan stability would adopt the proven economic, social, political, infrastructural, and local governance models of regional states, and honing and adopting those models into the broader Afghan domestic theatre. For this to happen, a new plan of cooperation from both NATO and American policy makers with regional states and their respective civil societies needs to be constructed and implemented.
  • Topic: NATO, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Middle East