Search

Number of results to display per page

Search Results

  • Author: Dr. Christopher Sims
  • Publication Date: 12-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: The Human Terrain System embedded civilians primarily in brigade combat teams (BCTs) in Iraq and Afghanistan between 2007 and 2014 to act as a collection and dispersal mechanism for sociocultural comprehension. Set against the backdrop of the program’s evolution, the experiences of these social scientists clarifies the U.S. Army’s decision to integrate social scientists at the tactical level in conflict. Based on interviews, program documents, material from Freedom of Information Act requests, and secondary sources, this book finds a series of limiting factors inhibiting social science research at the tactical level, common to both Iraq and Afghanistan. Complexity in integrating civilians into the military decision-making cycle, creating timely research with a high level of fidelity, and making granular research resonate with brigade staff all contributed to inhibiting the overall effect of the Human Terrain System. Yet, while high operational tempo in contested spaces complicates social science research at the tactical level, the author argues that there is a continued requirement for a residual capability to be maintained by the U.S. Army.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War, Military Strategy, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, United States of America
  • Author: Józef Lang
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Russia's current and foreseeable policy towards Afghanistan is multi-vectored, complex and shows, at times, signs of incoherence. Russia views developments in Afghanistan as a strategic challenge and is expressing growing concern over the country's prospects for stability after the withdrawal of ISAF forces by the end of 2014. Russian decision-makers fear that a security vacuum emerging after the withdrawal could destabilise Central Asia and have a negative impact on Russia itself. At the same time, Moscow is concerned with Western military presence in the region, which it regards as interference in its neighbourhood. At tactical level, Russia also sees the situation in Afghanistan as an opportunity to secure its interests both regionally (consolidating its influence in Central Asia) and more widely (in terms of its relations with NATO).
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, Central Asia
  • Author: Babrak Osman
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Afghanistan is one of four Oxfam country programmes delivering the Within and Without the State (WWS) programme, funded by DFID from 2011 to 2016 under the Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Programme Partnership Arrangement (CHASE PPA). WWS is piloting innovative approaches to working with civil society to promote more accountable governance in conflict-affected and fragile contexts.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil Society, Gender Issues, Peace Studies, War, Youth Culture
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 01-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The more one looks at the current situation in Afghanistan today, the more likely it seems that Transition will at best produce a weak and divided state and at worst a state that either continues its civil war or comes under Taliban and extremist control. More than a decade of Western intervention has not produced a strong and viable central government, an economy that can function without massive outside aid, or effective Afghan forces. There is no sign that insurgents are being pushed towards defeat or will lose their sanctuaries in Pakistan. This has made every aspect of Transition is a high-risk effort.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil War, Development, Islam, Terrorism, War, Armed Struggle, Counterinsurgency, Governance
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Taliban
  • Author: Müge Dalkıran
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Global Political Trends Center
  • Abstract: The Voluntary Repatriation Program to Afghanistan assisted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, which started in 2002, is the largest return program in the modern history. Whereas over 5,8 million Afghan refugees have returned to Afghanistan between 2002 and 2013, 4,7 million of them participated in the Voluntary Repatriation Program. Being the asylum fatigue countries, Iran and Pakistan are the main host countries conducting this program together with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. This paper examines the Voluntary Repatriation Program to Afghanistan in the light of the situation in Pakistan and Iran.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iran, South Asia, Central Asia, United Nations
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The US is already at least six months behind in shaping an effective Transition in Afghanistan. It has not laid credible plans for the security, governance, and economic aspects of Transition. It has not made its level of future commitment clear to its allies or the Afghans, and it has failed dismally to convince the Congress and the American people that there is a credible reason to support Transition beyond the end of 2014.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, Islam, War, Fragile/Failed State
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Patricia A. Gossman
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: In Afghanistan, the social upheaval resulting from thirty-five years of war has created widely differing narratives of the conflict as various communities and political factions have reconstructed events through the lens of their experiences. Extensive dislocation of large segments of the population and poor communication throughout the war years meant that Afghans often had no way of knowing what was happening in different parts of the country. Although the war had several phases, earlier transitions—such as the collapse of the Najibullah government in 1992—failed to provide an opportunity for investigations into past human rights abuses because the conflict was ongoing. As a consequence, documentation remains thin. Conditions have made it difficult for human rights groups to function; additionally, many records have been either lost or destroyed. Since 2001, a number of initiatives were launched to investigate and document war crimes and human rights abuses. The relative openness of this period provided increased opportunities to document ongoing abuses occurring in the context of the Taliban insurgency and counterinsurgency effort. The most ambitious components of transitional justice, as envisioned by Afghan organizations and their international partners, however, appear to be indefinitely stalled given the failure of electoral vetting and the silencing of an Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission report that would have mapped all abuses in the three decades of conflict. No single report or archive can provide a definitive truth about the past. Such an archive, however, can serve, however imperfectly, as vital evidence in the effort to understand the complex array of factors that have played a part in conflict. Better documentation and access to other narratives could provide a counterweight to narrow or politically motivated interpretations of past events that could seed future conflict.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Islam, Terrorism, War, Armed Struggle, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: As the presidential election approaches in 2014, with the security transition at the year's end, Afghan women, including parliamentarians and rights activists, are concerned that the hard-won political, economic and social gains achieved since the U.S.-led intervention in 2001 may be rolled back or conceded in negotiations with the insurgents. Afghanistan's stabilisation ultimately rests on the state's accountability to all its citizens, and respect for constitutional, legal and international commitments, including to human rights and gender equality. There will be no sustainable peace unless there is justice, and justice demands that the state respect and protect the rights of women, half its population.
  • Topic: NATO, Democratization, Development, Gender Issues, Peace Studies, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Author: Seth G. Jones, Keith Crane
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Afghanistan will undergo three major transitions in 2014: from a Hamid Karzai–led government to one presumably headed by another president following the 2014 election; from a U.S.-led to an Afghan-led counterinsurgency; and from an economy driven by foreign expenditures on military support and assistance to one more reliant on domestic sources of growth, as the United States and other countries reduce their presence. The United States and its allies will need to shape each of these transitions in ways that safeguard their interests.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Islam, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Christian Dennys, Tom Hamilton-Baillie
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: This paper argues that security sector reform (SSR) in Afghanistan suffers from a lack of strategic direction and political agreement. It focuses on disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR), and police and army reform in two case studies — Baghlan province and Nahr-I Sarraj district in Helmand province — in order to demonstrate the pitfalls of an SSR process driven by operational activities in the absence of an overarching strategy. The paper then examines the role of the Office of the National Security Council (ONSC) within the Afghan government in order to account for the lack of strategic direction in SSR before providing recommendations on how to avoid such problems in the future.
  • Topic: Security, Political Violence, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: A negotiated political settlement is a desirable outcome to the conflict in Afghanistan, but current talks with the Taliban are unlikely to result in a sustainable peace. There is a risk that negotiations under present conditions could further destabilise the country and region. Debilitated by internal political divisions and external pressures, the Karzai government is poorly positioned to cut a deal with leaders of the insurgency. Afghanistan's security forces are ill-prepared to handle the power vacuum that will occur following the exit of international troops. As political competition heats up within the country in the run-up to NATO's withdrawal of combat forces at the end of 2014, the differing priorities and preferences of the parties to the conflict – from the Afghan government to the Taliban leadership to key regional and wider international actors – will further undermine the prospects of peace. To avoid another civil war, a major course correction is needed that results in the appointment of a UN-mandated mediation team and the adoption of a more realistic approach to resolution of the conflict.
  • Topic: Ethnic Conflict, Islam, Treaties and Agreements, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia, Taliban
  • Author: Harsh Pant
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Peace and Security Studies
  • Abstract: Indian diplomacy faced a major setback at the Afghanistan Conference in London in January 2010, where Indian concerns were summarily ignored. In one stroke, Pakistan rendered New Delhi irrelevant in the evolving security dynamic in Afghanistan. When Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna underscored the folly of making a distinction “between good Taliban and bad Taliban,” he was completely out of sync with the larger mood at the conference. Days before this much-hyped conference, senior U.S. military commanders were suggesting that peace talks with the Taliban may be imminent and that Taliban members might even be invited to join the government in Kabul. The West had made up its mind that it was not a question of if, but when and how to exit from Afghanistan, which seemed to be becoming a quagmire for the leaders in Washington and London.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Terrorism, War, Power Politics, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Washington, India, Taliban, London, New Delhi
  • Author: Timo Behr, Charly Salonius-Pasternak
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: States which contribute to various international efforts in Afghanistan will find it increasingly difficult to balance a need to show long-term commitment with an unpredictable political and quickly changing operating environment. Recent events in Afghanistan are threatening to undermine the plans for an orderly transition of security responsibilities to Afghan authorities by the end of 2014. Countries must be ready to adjust contributions in both size and task during both 2012 and 2013. Germany has pledged to only gradually withdraw its forces and maintain its focus on partnering and training, despite an increasingly unstable environment. Current planning also foresees a German commitment in the post-2014 period. Finland will increasingly focus on civilian crisis management efforts and development assistance, and will stay engaged and committed as long as its closest partners also do so. Sweden is set to continue leading a Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT), but post-2014 commitments are unclear. The United States is set to return to 'pre-surge' force levels (though with a different force structure) of around 68,000 soldiers by autumn 2012. Further withdrawals of up to 30,000 soldiers are being discussed.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Defense Policy, Peace Studies, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Finland, Germany, Sweden
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The key issue in evaluating the prospects for a successful Transition in Afghanistan is not whether a successful transition in Afghanistan is possible, it is rather whether some form of meaningful transition is probable — a very different thing. The answer is a modest form of strategic success is still possible, but that it is too soon to know whether it is probable and there are many areas where the current level of planning, analysis, and action combined to sharply reduce the chances for success.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Defense Policy, War, Counterinsurgency, Fragile/Failed State
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: It is surprisingly difficult to get a meaningful estimate of the total cost of the Afghan conflict, total spending on Afghan forces and total spending on various forms of aid. More data are available on US efforts – which have dominated military and aid spending, but even these data present serious problems in reliability, consistency, and definition. Moreover, it is only since FY2012 that the US provided an integrated request for funding for the war as part of its annual budget request. The data for the period before FY2009 are accurate pictures of the Department of Defense request, but there is only a CRS estimate of total spending the previous years.
  • Topic: Economics, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Gilles Dorronsoro
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan will leave the country worse than it was before 2001 in some respects. There is no clear plan for the future. Washington will progressively lose its influence over Kabul, and drone operations in Pakistan are not a credible way to fight jihadist groups on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. The situation will only worsen after 2014, when most U.S. troops are out of the country and aid going to the Afghan government steeply declines.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Islam, Terrorism, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Washington, Asia
  • Author: William Byrd
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: Afghanistan's history provides important insights and lessons for the 2011 to 2014 transition and beyond, but differences with the past must be taken into account. As the 1933 to 1973 decades demonstrate, the country can be stable and effectively governed, but that stability was anchored in the two pillars of traditional local governance and a centralized though weak state, both of which were gravely damaged after 1978. Given the country's history of chronic succession problems and associated conflict, the next presidential election, if successful, would be the first peaceful transfer of leadership since 1933 and only the fourth since 1747. Expectations about the pace of progress must be modest and the dangers of overly ambitious reforms leading to violent reactions recognized. Regional countries could derail peace prospects, and planning around such spoilers may be needed. The difficulties of reaching a peaceful solution during a military withdrawal, and the adverse consequences when such efforts fail, were demonstrated during the period from 1986 to 1992. The period after the Soviet withdrawal shows the potential and limitations of Afghan security forces: holding onto Kabul and other cities is probably the most that can be hoped for in the current transition. The option of arming and paying militias is dangerous because it opens the door to instability and predatory behavior. The Afghan economy is in much better shape than it was during and after the Soviet period, and a deep economic contraction in coming years needs to be avoided. Afghanistan will depend heavily on outside financial support for many years, and such support must not be abruptly cut back or stopped. Effective national leadership is critical during transitions. It is important not to overlearn from history, for example, Afghanistan's problematic experience over the past half-century with political parties, which are essential to successful democratic systems.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Islam, War, Fragile/Failed State
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Plagued by factionalism and corruption, Afghanistan is far from ready to assume responsibility for security when U.S. and NATO forces withdraw in 2014. That makes the political challenge of organising a credible presidential election and transfer of power from President Karzai to a successor that year all the more daunting. A repeat of previous elections' chaos and chicanery would trigger a constitutional crisis, lessening chances the present political dispensation can survive the transition. In the current environment, prospects for clean elections and a smooth transition are slim. The electoral process is mired in bureaucratic confusion, institutional duplication and political machinations. Electoral officials indicate that security and financial concerns will force the 2013 provincial council polls to 2014. There are alarming signs Karzai hopes to stack the deck for a favoured proxy. Demonstrating at least will to ensure clean elections could forge a degree of national consensus and boost popular confidence, but steps toward a stable transition must begin now to prevent a precipitous slide toward state collapse. Time is running out.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Corruption, Ethnic Conflict, War, Insurgency, Fragile/Failed State, Governance
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia
  • Author: Matthieu Aikins
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: As Afghanistan approaches the 2014 deadline for assuming responsibility for its own security, and the international community becomes preoccupied with the challenge of reducing its vast entanglement with the country's politics, economy, and society, the critical question is whether NATO's transition will succeed in stabilizing Afghanistan—or whether it will result in further destabilization, as seen following the Soviet withdrawal in 1989, which eventually led to the collapse of the central government, large-scale civil war, and the country's development into a haven for international terrorism.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Political Violence, Crime, Islam, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Liechtenstein Institute on Self Determination, Princeton University
  • Abstract: The Liechtenstein Institute on Self Determination at Princeton University convened a special Colloquium, “Diplomacy from the Mediterranean to the Hindu Kush: A Holistic and Proactive Approach” in Triesenberg, Principality of Liechtenstein, April 19-22, 2012. The colloquium brought together over seventy participants, including senior representatives, experts, academics, and civil society representatives from Austria, Azerbaijan, the European Union, Germany, Georgia, France, Iran, Israel, Liechtenstein, Russia, Qatar, Switzerland, Syria, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Participants engaged in both plenary and working group discussions about ways to address the four key issues: crisis diploma - cy with Iran; the ongoing crisis in Syria; Afghanistan in transition; and preventing the escalation of crises in this macro region. This was the third LISD-sponsored colloquium on developments in the Mediterranean to Hindu Kush region since the Arab Spring. The colloquium was off the record according to Liechtenstein Colloquium rules, and was financially supported by LISD, The House of Liechtenstein, the Government of the Principality of Liechtenstein, and the SIBIL Stiftung in Vaduz. The Colloquium was chaired by Wolfgang Danspeckgruber, Director of LISD. This chair's summary includes an updated postscript.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Arms Control and Proliferation, Islam, Nuclear Weapons, War, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, Iran, Middle East, France, Arabia, Germany, Syria, Qatar, Austria
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Liechtenstein Institute on Self Determination, Princeton University
  • Abstract: The Women, Peace, and Security agenda of the United Nations Security Council is considered one of the landmark achievements in its thematic work. In its resolution 1325 (2000), the Council addressed for the first time the impact of armed conflict on women and recognized the under-valued and under-utilized contributions women make to conflict prevention and peace processes. The thematic work initiated by resolution 1325 has been reinforced and expanded by follow-up resolutions 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009), and 1960 (2010), which together form the Women, Peace and Security agenda of the Council. At the same time, integrating this agenda into the country-specific work of the Council has proven very challenging, despite the Security Council's continued political recognition that gender is indeed central to lasting and sustainable peace and security. The implementation of the WPS agenda on the ground is thus lagging far behind the ambitious conceptual framework that the Council has created over the past decade.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Gender Issues, Peace Studies, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United Nations
  • Publication Date: 03-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: EastWest Institute
  • Abstract: The governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan have accepted a generous proposal from the government of Abu Dhabi to host a series of meetings facilitated by the East West Institute (EWI) to complement existing channels of communication between the two countries. Participants in the series, known as the Abu Dhabi Process, discuss areas of their relationship they believe will help build confidence, ensure greater stability, and enhance sustainable development in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The meetings are off-the-record, consultative in nature, and governed by the Chatham House Rule.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Islam, War, Armed Struggle, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Abu Dhabi
  • Author: Minna Jarvenpaa
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: The proposition that a political settlement is needed to end the war in Afghanistan has gained increasing attention in recent months. Channels for preliminary talks with Taliban leaders have been sought and a High Peace Council created. However, despite upbeat military assessments, the insurgency has expanded its reach across the country and continues to enjoy sanctuary in Pakistan. Afghans increasingly resent the presence of foreign troops, and the Taliban draw strength from grievances by ordinary Afghans against their government. External money to supply military bases and pay for development projects often ends up fueling conflict rather than creating stability. For their part, President Karzai and many Afghan political elites lack genuine commitment to reform, calling into question the viability of a state-building international strategy and transition by 2014. Missing is a political strategy to end the conflict that goes beyond dealing with the Taliban; it must define the kind of state that Afghans are willing to live in and that regional neighbors can endorse. Knowing that such a settlement could take years to conclude does not diminish the urgency of initiating the process. Given doubts about Karzai's ability to manage the situation effectively, the international community needs to facilitate a peace process more pro-actively than it has. To be sustainable, the process will need to be inclusive; women's rights, human rights, and media freedoms cannot become casualties of negotiations. Afghanistan's international partners should commit to a peace process and lay the groundwork to appoint a mediator. This includes gauging the interests of parties, identifying actual participants in talks, and structuring an agenda. In the meantime, international military efforts must be realigned to avoid action that contradicts the ultimate aim of a peace settlement.
  • Topic: NATO, Treaties and Agreements, War, Armed Struggle, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Taliban
  • Publication Date: 08-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: After a decade of major security, development and humanitarian assistance, the international community has failed to achieve a politically stable and economically viable Afghanistan. Despite billions of dollars in aid, state institutions remain fragile and unable to provide good governance, deliver basic services to the majority of the population or guarantee human security. As the insurgency spreads to areas regarded as relatively safe till now, and policymakers in Washington and other Western capitals seek a way out of an unpopular war, the international community still lacks a coherent policy to strengthen the state ahead of the withdrawal of most foreign forces by December 2014. The impact of international assistance will remain limited unless donors, particularly the largest, the U.S., stop subordinating programming to counter-insurgency objectives, devise better mechanisms to monitor implementation, adequately address corruption and wastage of aid funds, and ensure that recipient communities identify needs and shape assistance policies.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War, Foreign Aid, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Gilles Dorronsoro
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: A combination of two critical problems threatens to undermine the mission of the United States-led coalition in Afghanistan: the failure of the counterinsurgency strategy and a disconnect between political objectives and military operations. If anything, the current strategy is making a political solution less likely, notably because it is antagonizing Pakistan without containing the rise of the armed opposition. That has put the coalition in a paradoxical situation, in which it is being weakened militarily by a non-negotiated and inevitable withdrawal while at the same time alienating potential negotiating partners.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Ben Rowswell
  • Publication Date: 08-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: As a result of international state-building efforts, progress has been made in Afghanistan, however, political dysfunction and a lack of accountability remain problems. It has been suggested that failures of accountability may, in fact, be a product of the state- building effort itself. In the hybrid form of governance where authority is divided between the government and the international community, it can be difficult for the population to determine where accountability lies, leading to feelings of frustration and disempowerment.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, War, Foreign Aid, Infrastructure
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Frederick W. Kagan, Kimberly Kagan
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Success in Afghanistan is the establishment of a political order, security situation, and indigenous security force that is stable, viable, enduring, and able—with greatly reduced international support—to prevent Afghanistan from being a safe haven for international terrorists. The current American and Coalition strategy is making progress and should be continued. Since President Obama, NATO allies, and the Afghans have agreed that troops will be present in Afghanistan through 2014, the policy does not require substantial modifications at this point. This paper is thus primarily a report on the current situation in Afghanistan and a consideration of some of the prospects and challenges ahead. Our principal recommendation is that the U.S. and its allies should continue to resource and sustain the strategy now being executed, which is the only approach that can secure their vital national security interests in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, America
  • Author: Vijaya Ramachandran, Gregory Johnson, Julie Walz
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: The U.S. military has become substantially engaged in economic development and stabilization and will likely continue to carry out these activities in in-conflict zones for some time to come. Since FY2002, nearly $62 billion has been appropriated for relief and reconstruction in Afghanistan. The Commander's Emergency Response Program (CERP), which provides funds for projects to address urgent reconstruction and relief efforts, is one component of the military's development operations. In this analysis, we take U.S. military involvement in development as a given and concentrate on providing recommendations for it to operate more efficiently and effectively. By doing so, we are not advocating that the U.S. military become involved in all types of development activities or that CERP be used more broadly; rather, our recommendations address the military's capacity to carry out what it is already doing in Afghanistan and other in-conflict situations.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Economics, War, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The US confronts a wide range of challenges if it is to win the Afghan conflict in any meaningful sense, and leave a stable Afghanistan and Pakistan: Decide on US strategic objectives in conducting and terminating the war. These objectives not only include the defeat of Al Qaeda, but deciding on what kind of transition the US wishes to make in Afghanistan, what goals the US can achieve in creating a stable Afghanistan, US goals in Pakistan, and the broader strategic goals the US will seek in Central and South Asia. Defeat the insurgency not only in tactical terms, but also by eliminating its control and influence over the population and ability exploit sanctuaries in Pakistan and win a war of political transition. Create a more effective and integrated, operational civil and civil-military transition effort by NATO/ISAF, UN, member countries, NGO, and international community efforts through 2014 and for 5-10 years after the withdrawal of combat forces. Build up a much larger, and more effective, mix of Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). Give the Afghan government the necessary capacity and legitimacy (and lasting stability) at the national, regional/provincial, district, and local levels by 2014. Dealing with Pakistan in reducing the Taliban-Haqqani network in the NWFP and Baluchistan, and dealing with the broader risk Pakistan will become a failed nuclear weapons state. Shape a balance of post-transition relations with India, Iran, "Stans," Russia, and China that will help sustain posttransition stability. Make effective trade-offs in terms of resources relative to the priorities set by other US domestic and security interests.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Graciana del Castillo
  • Publication Date: 10-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: The longest war and one of the largest relief efforts in U.S. history- in Afghanistan and Haiti, respectively-are testing the cost-effectiveness of U.S. foreign assistance in conflictravaged or disaster-torn countries. U.S.-led economic reconstruction in both countries is clearly off track and becoming increasingly costly and unpopular-both at home and in the respective countries. Reconstruction zones (RZs), consisting of two distinct but linked areas to ensure synergies between them-a local-production reconstruction zone (LRZ) producing for local consumption and an export-oriented reconstruction zone (ERZ) producing exclusively for export- could be used to replace the fragmented way aid is provided to these countries with an integrated strategy for economic reconstruction. With an appropriate legal and regulatory framework, ERZs-operating as free-trade zones- could create appropriate links to the national economy as well as positive externalities or spillovers. Such a framework would avoid the problems created by these zones operating as enclaves in Haiti in the past. By targeting aid to provide adequate infrastructure and services within the RZs at a manageable scale, countries could jump-start their productive sectors and create jobs and entrepreneurship in agriculture, light manufacturing, and services, both for domestic consumption and for exports. By creating dynamic and inclusive growth, RZs could help countries stand on their own feet, consolidate peace, and overcome the unsustainable aid dependency to which they have grown accustomed.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Humanitarian Aid, War, Natural Disasters, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Caribbean
  • Author: John K. Naland
  • Publication Date: 10-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: Embedded provincial reconstruction teams (ePRTs) were small State Department- led units inserted into U.S. combat brigades in Iraq from 2007 to 2010 to support military counterinsurgency efforts at the local level. During major combat operations in 2007 and into 2008, ePRTs provided important support to military counterinsurgency efforts. As U.S. combat units wound down these efforts and withdrew from towns and cities, ePRTs did useful-but harder to quantify-work in mentoring local officials. Combat brigades and ePRTs generally worked well together. However, some units were unsure of how best to employ civilians. The military and civilians also sometimes had differing views on issues of short-term versus long-term goals. Despite problems, ePRT veterans believe that they had a positive effect in both supporting military counterinsurgency efforts and helping local Iraqi officials prepare for self-reliance. Interviewees identified a variety of operational problems that detracted from ePRT mission accomplishment. The Iraq ePRTs are now history, but as the United States continues to use civil-military teams in Afghanistan, these observed lessons need to be learned and acted upon.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Arabia
  • Author: Graciana del Castillo
  • Publication Date: 08-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: The United States' longest war, in Afghanistan, and one of the largest relief efforts in U.S. history, in Haiti, are testing U.S. leadership in the world, as well as its determination to deal with fiscal imbalances, the debt burden, and economic malaise at home. U.S.-led reconstruction in both countries is lagging and becoming increasingly expensive, and it will not succeed without a major change in strategy. U.S. goals in both countries will be elusive unless the misguided policies and misplaced priorities under which reconstruction has been taking place change in fundamental ways. Each country is different and will need to develop its own strategy. Nevertheless, we have identified basic rules, lessons, and best practices that national policymakers and the international community should keep in mind to improve the provision of aid and technical assistance. During the immediate transition from war or chaos, reconstruction is not development as usual: The peace (or political) objective should prevail at all times over the development (or economic) objective. Without peace there cannot be development. Policymaking should be tailored to four major differences from development as usual. Emergency policies should be adopted without delay, aid to groups most affected by crises should be prioritized, corruption should be checked, and national ownership of reconstruction policies must be assured. For both Afghanistan and Haiti, a broad-based debate-including national leaders, U.S. government officials, members of Congress, military leaders, academics, think tanks, and aid practitioners in these countries-is urgently needed and should take place without delay, as it did at the time of the Marshall Plan.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Peace Studies, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Haiti
  • Author: Noah Coburn
  • Publication Date: 08-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: There are numerous sources of local conflict in Afghanistan today, but the majority cluster around a few issues: disputes over land and water rights; family disputes, particularly inheritance; and disputes over control of local positions of authority. Lack of capacity or resources in the formal justice systems has been blamed for the lack of effective dispute resolution. But the fact that disputes were resolved more regularly in Afghanistan before the war years, when the formal justice system had even fewer resources, indicates that other causes are involved. Lack of political and personal security of dispute-resolution practitioners and the increased power of local commanders, whose authority is not community-based, have undermined the traditional dispute-resolution system. At the same time, corruption and inefficiency have delegitimized the formal justice system in the eyes of many disputants. Afghans and foreign donors alike note that Afghanistan has both state (court-based) and nonstate (based upon a combination of customary and religious law) justice sectors, and it is often assumed that these systems solely compete with each other for dispute-resolution authority. USIP research shows that, contrary to assumptions, successfully resolved disputes rely on a combination of formal and informal actors. Indeed, it is common for disputes to move between formal and informal venues and to be considered by a series of local elders and, more rarely, government officials.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Christian Dennys
  • Publication Date: 10-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: International approaches to the Afghan security sector over the last nine years have exhibited the tendencies of security sector reform (SSR), counterinsurgency (COIN) and stabilization, and exposed the inherent tensions between them. This paper argues that while an SSR, COIN or stabilization approach may have been appropriate at the beginning of the post-Taliban period or currently, actual practice has been to attempt all three simultaneously. This leads to confusion, and the combined approaches tend to undermine one another as they attempt to address the security issues facing Afghanistan. The paper concludes that, ultimately, the lack of strategic direction and focus in the international intervention — as demonstrated by the evolution of United Nations (UN) Security Council resolutions, the plethora of international missions and interventions in the security sector, and the realities on the ground — has served both Afghanistan and its international partners poorly
  • Topic: Security, International Cooperation, United Nations, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Mark Fields, Ramsha Ahmed
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Ten years ago in Bonn, Germany, the United Nations Envoy to Afghanistan, Ambassador Lakhdar Brahimi, and U.S. Envoy to the Afghan Opposition, Ambassador James Dobbins, led a diverse group of international diplomats and warriors to consensus and charted the political course for Afghanistan well into the decade. The process that led to the Bonn Agreement (Bonn 2001, or Bonn I) reflects the best of U.S. and United Nations statesmanship and was the result of the effective application of military and diplomatic power.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, NATO, United Nations, War, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Germany
  • Author: Hayat Alvi
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Human Rights Human Welfare (University of Denver)
  • Abstract: Ten years after the September 11th attacks in the United States and the military campaign in Afghanistan, there is some good news, but unfortunately still much bad news pertaining to women in Afghanistan. The patterns of politics, security/military operations, religious fanaticism, heavily patriarchal structures and practices, and ongoing insurgent violence continue to threaten girls and women in the most insidious ways. Although women's rights and freedoms in Afghanistan have finally entered the radar screen of the international community's consciousness, they still linger in the margins in many respects.
  • Topic: Security, Gender Issues, Human Rights, Human Welfare, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Human Rights First
  • Abstract: In August 2010, General David Petraeus, Commander of the NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, announced a shift in U.S. strategy. The United States “cannot kill or capture our way to victory,” he warned. Rather, we must earn the trust of the Afghan people.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, War, Prisons/Penal Systems
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Author: Robert Matthews
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: Pakistan's cooperation is crucial to the success of the current US and Nato strategy in Afghanistan. Yet the Pakistani military not only has misgivings about the Nato surge but also its own agenda. Central to the discord is the military's view of the Afghan Taliban as assets to counter rival India's spreading Afghan footprint. The military views the US surge and the 18-month timeframe as acts of desperation by the Obama administration – as well as a vindication of Pakistan's strategy of keeping its options open through a “selective counter-insurgency approach”. Thus, there is little indication that Pakistan is willing to undertake campaigns against militants in the tribal areas. Or play the role of anvil to the US hammer along the Afghan-Pakistani border.
  • Topic: NATO, Arms Control and Proliferation, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, South Asia
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Defeating the insurgency not only in tactical terms, but by eliminating its control and influence over the population. Creating an effective and well-resourced NATO/ISAF and US response to defeating the insurgency and securing the population. Building up a much larger and more effective (and enduring base for transition) mix of Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). Giving the Afghan government the necessary capacity and legitimacy at the national, regional/provincial, district, and local levels. Creating an effective, integrated, and truly operational civil-military effort. NATO/ISAF, UN, member country, and NGO and international community efforts. Dealing with the sixth center of gravity outside Afghanistan and NATO/ISAF's formal mission. with the actions of Pakistan, Iran, and other states will be critical to success in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: NATO, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Asia
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The Taliban-led insurgency has the momentum...but additional effective counterinsurgency forces and operations will challenge them in select districts and provinces.
  • Topic: Humanitarian Aid, War, Military Strategy
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Taliban
  • Author: Guenter Overfeld, Michael Zumot
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: EastWest Institute
  • Abstract: Jobs and income generation for Afghan people are two key elements to increase development and achieve stability in Afghanistan. With a jobless rate of 40 percent (out of a total labor force estimated at about 15 million people in 2004) and 44 percent of the population below the age of 14, the issue is of paramount importance. Jobs and income generation are also relevant for the international community's efforts to tackle the Taliban insurgency in the near term. Given the widely accepted position that many “rank and file” Taliban fighters are “Taliban for economic reasons” they should be open to reintegration where economic opportunities are created. The upcoming London conference on Afghanistan on January 28 will see Afghanistan's president unveil a plan to offer jobs, education, pensions and land to Taliban fighters who lay down their weapons as part of the reconciliation and reintegration plan.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War, Labor Issues
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Taliban, London
  • Author: Robert B. Oakley, T.X. Hammes
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The focus on the war in Afghanistan has prevented the United States from developing a South Asia strategy rooted in the relative strategic importance of the nations in the region. India, a stable democracy enjoying rapid growth, clearly has the most potential as a strategic partner. Pakistan, as the home of al Qaeda leadership and over 60 nuclear weapons, is the greatest threat to regional stability and growth. Yet Afghanistan absorbs the vast majority of U.S. effort in the region. The United States needs to develop a genuine regional strategy. This paper argues that making the economic growth and social reform essential to the stability of Pakistan a higher priority than the conflict in Afghanistan is a core requirement of such a strategy.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Economics, Terrorism, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, South Asia, India
  • Author: Wanda Troszczynska-van Genderen
  • Publication Date: 08-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Over the years, human rights have become an area of programmatic focus in the crisis management operations conducted by the EU. Nevertheless, the geopolitical reality after the launch of the so-called 'war on terror' witnessed the emergence of new practical impediments to human rights implementation in civilian crisis response operations. The militarisation of the humanitarian space and blurred boundaries between military and civilian tasks resulted in the increased vulnerability of civilians working in ground operations. Simultaneously, the scale of human rights violations, coupled with security threats to civilians due to both attacks by insurgents and interventions carried out by international military personnel, created operational challenges going well beyond what previous Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) civilian crisis management operations had to deal with.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Human Rights, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Europe
  • Author: T.X. Hammes
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: In Iraq and Afghanistan, the use of contractors reached a level unprecedented in U.S. military operations. As of March 31, 2010, the United States deployed 175,000 troops and 207,000 contractors in the war zones. Contractors represented 50 percent of the Department of Defense (DOD) workforce in Iraq and 59 percent in Afghanistan. These numbers include both armed and unarmed contractors. Thus, for the purposes of this paper, the term contractor includes both armed and unarmed personnel unless otherwise specified. The presence of contractors on the battlefield is obviously not a new phenomenon but has dramatically increased from the ratio of 1 contractor to 55 military personnel in Vietnam to 1:1 in the Iraq and 1.43:1 in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Privatization, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Radha Kumar, Fabrice Pothier, Waliullah Rahmani
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Since the Obama administration set 2011 as the date for withdrawal from Afghanistan, speculation has been rife on whether and how the deadline will be met. Although this date is actually fuzzy – it is doubtful whether 2011 will see even the beginning of an American drawdown – it has focused attention on the critical issues for stabilisation in Afghanistan that have remained unaddressed over the past nine years.
  • Topic: Security, Islam, War, Armed Struggle, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Author: Tom Gregg
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: At the London Conference on Afghanistan held on January 28, 2010, the government of Afghanistan and the international community stated that regionally owned and steered initiatives stood the best chance of success. President Karzai and President Obama echoed that theme during the former's May 2010 visit to Washington – their joint statement “underscored the importance of regional cooperation in promoting regional security and in combating illicit financial, criminal, and terrorist networks.”
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Peace Studies, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Washington
  • Author: Eric T. Olson
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: If the U.S. Army's current experience in ongoing overseas operations like those in Iraq and Afghanistan are any indication, reconstruction has become an integral part of the American way of war. And judging from the disappointing results of reconstruction efforts in these operations, measured mostly in terms of the effect that such efforts have had on the course of these wars, there is much lacking in the Army's understanding of reconstruction itself and the role that it will likely play in all future operations, especially in counterinsurgencies (COIN).
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Arms Control and Proliferation, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Recent reporting by the NATO Training Mission in Afghanistan (NTM-A) and the Department of Defense provides added insight into how the course of the fighting tracks with the development of Afghan security forces. The metrics in this analysis are not a substitute for reading the detailed Department of Defense reporting on Afghan force development available in the publications section of DoD's web site at defenselink.gov, or the new NTM-A report, "Year in Review, November 2009 to November 2010." They do show, however, that there is now a far more credible prospect that Afghan forces will be ready for transition in 2014, and capable of largely assuming responsibility for security operations. The one critical caveat is that these efforts must continue to be properly funded, and that NATO has not yet obtained anything like the quantity and quality of trainers and partners it needs to win. These metrics make it clear that this is a the highest single priority for added military contributions from NATO countries, and that current assets meet less that 40% of the requirement needed by mid-2011.
  • Topic: Security, NATO, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Ashley Jackson
  • Publication Date: 11-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Despite an increase in the size of international military forces (IMF) from 90,0 00 to 14 0,00 0 over the past year , AOG have continued to expand their presence into the north, center and west a n d now have control of or significant influence in over half of the country. Attacks initiated by AOG have increased by 59% between July and September compared with the same period last year. In 200 9, they increased 43 % on 20 08. Government officials can barely access one-third of the country and there are districts outside government control in almost all of Afghanistan's 3 4 provinces.
  • Topic: Political Violence, NATO, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Bruce Riedel
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: On coming into office, President Barak Obama immediately assembled a team to assess the US situation in Afghanistan and formulate a strategy for the mission. Heading up this team was Bruce Riedel, a former adviser to Presidents Clinton and Bush and a former CIA officer. This paper, based on a CIGI Signature Lecture given by Mr. Riedel in April 2010, discusses the history of the US war on terror since 9/11, specifically the actors involved in initiating the al-Qaeda declaration of war on the US and its allies, and the recent terrorist plots and attacks linked to al-Qaeda, which demonstrate that al-Qaeda and its allies continue to mount terrorist attacks despite the efforts of the US to thwart terrorism.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War, Insurgency, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: C. Christine Fair
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: On entering the White House, US President Barack Obama aimed to put the war in Afghanistan at the forefront of his security agenda following eight years of neglect by a Bush administration preoccupied by the war in Iraq. The Obama administration spent nearly On entering the White House, US President Barack Obama aimed to put the war in Afghanistan at the forefront of his security agenda following eight years of neglect by a Bush administration preoccupied by the war in Iraq. The Obama administration spent nearly a year reviewing the situation in Afghanistan and vetting war options amid protracted interagency deliberation and partisan debate. By the end of 2009, President Obama affirmed his administration's commitment to degrading the capabilities of terrorist groups ensconced in Afghanistan and Pakistan and announced that, by the end of July 2011, the US would begin a conditions-based transfer of responsibility to the Afghan government and security forces, enabling the United States to diminish its kinetic military activities in favour of a more "typical" presence with Washington continuing to providing development and economic assistance, plus training for military and civilian personnel. Thus the counter-insurgency mantra of "clear, hold and build" became, under Obama, "clear, hold, build and transfer." This paper evaluates the viability of the "clear, hold, build and transfer" approach in light of the structural challenges to each element and the pressure to deliver results in a short time-frame amid difficult security conditions.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Far from being a bulwark against the spread of extremism and violence from Afghanistan, Tajikistan is looking increasingly like its southern neighbour – a weak state that is suffering from a failure of leadership. Energy infrastructure is near total breakdown for the second winter running, and it is likely migrant labourer remittances, the driver of the country's economy in recent years, will fall dramatically as a result of the world economic crisis. President Emomali Rakhmon may be facing his greatest challenge since the civil war of 1992-97. At the very least the government will be confronted with serious economic problems, and the desperately poor population will be condemned to yet more deprivation. At worst the government runs the risk of social unrest. There are few indications that the Rakhmon administration is up to this challenge. To address the situation, the international community – both at the level of international organisations and governments – should ensure any assistance reaches those who truly need it, place issues of governance and corruption at the centre of all contacts with the Tajik government, and initiate an energetic dialogue with President Rakhmon on democratisation.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Government, Islam, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia, Tajikistan
  • Author: Frederik Rosén
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This paper identifies a new development in civil-military relations, which I suggest calling third-generation civil-military relations. Third-generation civil-military relations are the product of military organisations embarking on civil governance roles and the creation of deep partnerships between military and civil agencies. They appear to be less dramatic than 'traditional' civil-military relations (Blue Helmets, Provincial Reconstructions Teams) in that they do not create the same visible alignment on the ground between military and non-military identities. Yet they do represent a momentous development for the US military's engagement in Afghanistan in particular, as well as challenging our understanding of the role of the military in global security, thus adding a new complexity to international security cooperation. This complexity concerns differing opinions with regard to what kinds of tasks the military should do and what it should not. It is about norms and principles rather than about violent consequences for civilians. There are many tasks for which most military organisations are unsuitable, because they lack the necessary expertise and institutional capability. But these are practical matters rather than being about the normative 'should' questions: Should the military train civil police? Should the military work on civil reform areas in the Afghan Ministry of Interior? Should the military engage in civil justice-sector reform? The common reply to such questions is – or has been – no. Yet developments on the ground point precisely towards such an expansion of military affairs.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Author: Seth G. Jones, C. Christine Fair
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: More than seven years after U.S. forces entered Afghanistan, important gains made in bringing stability and democracy to Afghanistan are imperiled. While there have been some positive developments in such areas as economic growth, the Taliban and other insurgent groups have gained some ground in the country and in neighboring Pakistan, the drug trade remains a significant problem, and corruption has worsened in the Afghan government. According to United Nations data, insurgent incidents have increased every year since the 2001 overthrow of the Taliban regime. The situation in parts of Afghanistan's south and east is particularly concerning because of the twin menace of insurgent and criminal activity. Despite these challenges, the insurgency remains deeply fractured among a range of groups, and most have little support among the Afghan population. This presents an opportunity for Afghans and the international community to turn the situation around.
  • Topic: Security, Political Violence, Development, Economics, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Author: Malou Innocent
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: A spreading Islamic insurgency engulfs the amorphous and ungoverned border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. After initial victories by the United States and the Northern Alliance in autumn 2001, hundreds of Taliban and al Qaeda fighters fled Afghanistan to seek refuge across the border in Pakistan's rugged northwest. Since 2007, the number of ambushes, militant offensives, and targeted assassinations has risen sharply across Afghanistan, while suicide bombers and pro-Taliban insurgents sweep through settled areas of Pakistan at an alarming pace. For better and for worse, Pakistan will remain the fulcrum of U.S. policy in the region—its leaders continue to provide vital counterterrorism cooperation and have received close to $20 billion in assistance from the United States, yet elements associated with its national intelligence agency, Inter-Services Intelligence, covertly assist militant proxy groups destabilizing the region
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, International Cooperation, Islam, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, South Asia, Asia
  • Author: Jake Sherman
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: In 2005, the Government of Afghanistan initiated a process leading to the formulation of the Afghanistan National Development Strategy (ANDS). The ANDS was formally launched at the International Conference in Support of Afghanistan in Paris on June 12, 2008. According to the Paris Conference Declaration, the strategy will be the “roadmap for joint action [by donors and the Afghan government] over the next five years and sets our shared priorities.”
  • Topic: Security, Civil Society, Development, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: James Cockayne, Emily Speers Mears
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In late 2008, seventeen states, including the US, UK, China, Iraq, and Afghanistan, endorsed the Montreux Document on Pertinent International Legal Obligations and Good Practices for States Related to Operations of Private Military and Security Companies During Armed Conflict. This provides important guidance to states in regulating Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs). But there is a need to do more, to provide increased guidance to industry and ensure standards are enforced.
  • Topic: Security, International Law, Privatization, Treaties and Agreements, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, China, Iraq, United Kingdom
  • Author: Grant Dansie
  • Publication Date: 05-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Current descriptions and explanations of the situation in Afghanistan include the use of a wide range of terms; however the true meaning of these terms is often unclear. In planning and outlining effective strategy clear and useful definitions will be required to ensure worthwhile and successful results. This study examines how definitions may significantly affect strategy by focusing on the example of non-violent or low level violent actors in Afghanistan that are perceived as negatively affecting international peace and stability operations. It highlights that the situation is inherently more complex that at first glance. Our definitions may carry entrenched meanings that negatively affect our perceptions of certain actors. At the same time the situation on the ground is extremely complex with numerous factors influencing this perceived negative behaviour. The study outlines a number of dilemmas involved in developing these definitions, as well as highlighting how these play out on the ground. The study draws on a number of interviews with NGO workers, researchers, Western government officials and NATO/ISAF troops.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, NATO, War, Non State Actors
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Afghanistan's forthcoming elections, with presidential and provincial council polls on 20 August 2009, and National Assembly and district elections scheduled for 2010, present a formidable challenge if they are to produce widely accepted and credible results. The weakness of state institutions, the deteriorating security situation and the fractured political scene are all highlighted by – and will likely have a dramatic effect on – the electoral process. The years since the last poll saw the Afghan government and international community fail to embed a robust electoral framework and drive democratisation at all levels. This has made holding truly meaningful elections much more difficult. Rather than once again running the polls merely as distinct events, the enormous resources and attention focused on the elections should be channelled into strengthening political and electoral institutions, as a key part of the state-building efforts required to produce a stable country.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Frank G. Hoffman
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: America's ongoing battles in Afghanistan and Iraq have highlighted limitations in our understanding of the complexity of modern warfare. Furthermore, our cultural prism has retarded the institutionalization of capabilities needed to prevail in stabilization and counter-insurgency missions.
  • Topic: War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination
  • Abstract: The Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination (LISD) at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs convened a private workshop, “A Strategy for Afghanistan and Its Region,” May 7-10, 2009 in Triesenberg, Liechtenstein. The workshop's aim was to discuss in-depth the strategy of the Obama Administration toward Afghanistan and its region and to formulate additional recommendations. Some twenty leading international experts from the region, Asia, Europe and the United States participated. The meeting was co-funded by LISD, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and the Stiftung für Selbstbestimmung und Internationale Beziehungen (SiBiL) in Vaduz, Liechtenstein. The workshop was co-chaired by Francesc Vendrell and Wolfgang Danspeckgruber.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Islam, War, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, New York, Europe
  • Author: Steven J. Tomisek, Christopher S. Robinson, Kenneth Kligge
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The Obama administration has arguably inherited the toughest national security environment since the end of World War II. Instability in Afghanistan and Pakistan has propelled South Asia to the top of a U.S. national security agenda already crowded with a long list of major problems that includes North Korea, Iran, and Iraq. The political, security, and economic trends in Afghanistan and Pakistan have taken a turn for the worse, as the two countries confront an increasingly violent Taliban-led insurgency and al Qaeda–linked militant jihadist groups. To make matters even worse, Pakistan's relations with India have been damaged by the November 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks.
  • Topic: Political Violence, National Security, War, Armed Struggle
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Iran, South Asia, North Korea, Mumbai
  • Author: William D. Anderson, Jr.
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: With the United States currently engaged in difficult and taxing counterinsurgency operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, renewed emphasis has been focused upon the country's cap abilities and priorities vis - à - vis this type of warfare. Within the military, the Air Force has been especially and increasingly criticized for being too enamored with a Cold - War era conventionally minded force structure and for not shifting aggressively to meet the threats of COIN - style conflicts that many predict will be pervasive throughout the Global War on Terror.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: As international efforts focus on the worsening insurgency in Afghanistan, the issues of refugee return and the mobility of Afghans in their country and around the region have been overshadowed. Meeting the needs of returnees and addressing population movements remain an essential part of finding a solution to the conflict. These issues must be better integrated into policymaking. They play a role in many of the sources of discontent that undermine the legitimacy of the government in Kabul – from land disputes to rising crime. Migration has a positive side as well since t hose living abroad sustain much of the economy, but a comprehensive approach to displacement and migration is needed, including better coordination among Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran, if the benefits are to start outweighing the risks.
  • Topic: Security, War, Refugee Issues
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Iran, Kabul
  • Author: Robert M. Perito
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: In seven years, the Afghan National Police forces have grown to 68,000 personnel, with a target end strength of 86,000. The ANP includes the uniformed police force, which is responsible for general police duties, and specialized police forces, which deal with public order, counternarcotics, terrorism, and border control. Despite the impressive growth in numbers, the expenditure of $10 billion in international police assistance, and the involvement of the United States, the European Union, and multiple donors, the ANP is riddled with corruption and generally unable to protect Afghan citizens, control crime, or deal with the growing insurgency. The European Union has replaced Germany as the lead partner for police reform, but the United States has the largest police program, which is directed by the U.S. military. Putting soldiers in charge of police training has led to militarization of the ANP and its use as a counterinsurgency force. Using improperly trained, equipped, and supported ANP patrol men as “little soldiers” has resulted in the police suffering three times as many casualties as the Afghan National Army. Police are assigned in small numbers to isolated posts without backup and are targeted by the insurgents. Beyond funding the Taliban, the explosion in Afghan narcotics production fueled widespread corruption in the Afghan government and police. Drug abuse by police officers became increasingly common as did other forms of criminal behavior. Challenges facing the ANP were further compounded by a proliferation of bilateral police assistance programs that reflected the policing practices of donor countries. These efforts often were not coordinated with the larger U.S. and EU programs, creating confusion for the ANP. The Obama administration has acknowledged the importance of the police and announced its intentions to expand and improve the ANP as a key part of its plan for stabilizing Afghanistan. It should do this as part of a broader international community approach to police assistance that embraces a comprehensive program for security sector reform and rule of law.
  • Topic: Security, War, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Federico Sperotto
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Human Rights Human Welfare (University of Denver)
  • Abstract: Counterinsurgency is the dominant aspect of US operations in Afghanistan, and since ISAF—the NATO-led security and assistance force—has assumed growing security responsibility throughout the country, it is also a mission for the Europeans. The frame in which military operations are conducted is irregular warfare, a form of conflict which differs from conventional operations in two main aspects. First, it is warfare among and within the people. Second, it is warfare in which insurgents avoid a direct military confrontation, using instead unconventional methods and terrorist tactics.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Human Welfare, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Author: Dipali Mukhopadhyay
  • Publication Date: 09-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Despite his commitment to develop a democratic, modern state, President Hamid Karzai placed many former warlords in positions of power, particularly in the provinces. Many observers, Afghan and foreign alike, have decried the inclusion of warlords in the new governmental structures as the chief corrosive agent undermining efforts to reconstruct the state. Indeed, warlord governors have not been ideal government officials. They have employed informal power and rules, as well as their personal networks, to preserve control over their respective provinces. Informalized politics of this kind is the antithesis of a technocratic, rule-based approach to governance and entails considerable costs, from inefficiency to corruption and human rights abuses.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, Government, Sovereignty, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Author: Manuel R. Torres Soriano, Javier García Marín
  • Publication Date: 09-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: CONfines de Relaciones Internacionales y Ciencia Política
  • Abstract: Existe un acuerdo casi unánime entre aquellos estudiosos que han investigado la compleja realidad de la guerra: el creciente papel que tiene la gestión de la información pública en el desarrollo de los conflictos bélicos (Libicki, 1995; Alberts et al., 2001, Armistead, 2004). Esta preponderancia se manifestó en algunos de los conflictos de la década de los noventa, como la llamada Guerra del Golfo, y en los de la antigua Yugoslavia y Kosovo. A pesar de que en ellos la gestión de la información jugó un papel destacado en la estrategia de los contendientes, el desenlace de estos conflictos estuvo vinculado a los tradicionales elementos del “poder duro”, según la distinción de Josehp Nye (1990). Sin embargo, en los últimos años, hemos podido asistir a un acelerado incremento de la importancia del componente “inmaterial” de la guerra. La generalización y sofisticación de las nuevas tecnologías de la información, junto con la aparición de una nueva tipología de conflicto caracterizado por la asimetría en la naturaleza y fines de los contendientes, han situado a la dimensión informativa de los conflictos en el lugar central de toda reflexión sobre la naturaleza de las guerras del presente y el futuro.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Kosovo, Yugoslavia, Maryland
  • Author: Barack Obama
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: President Obama gave this address on December 1, 2009 at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, War, Armed Struggle, Fragile/Failed State
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, New York
  • Author: Jonathan Goodhand
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This paper explores the linkages between the drugs economy, borderlands and 'post conflict' state-building in Afghanistan. It does this through a fine grained historical analysis of Sheghnan, a remote district on the Afghan-Tajik border in the north-east. The paper charts the opening and closing of the border; the movement of people, commodities and ideas across the border; the effects of changing political regimes; the role of resources and their effects on local governance; and the complex, multifaceted networks that span the border and are involved in the drugs trade. The paper argues that the drugs economy has been an important part of the story of borderland transformation in Sheghnan. Because of drugs, borderlands are no longer marginal, but have become a resource to be exploited by the centre. As such the paper argues that examining the frontier may throw light on processes of state formation, state collapse and 'post conflict' state-building. A focus on borderlands means taking seriously the 'politics of place' and examining the diffuse dynamics and localised projects that feed into and shape processes of state formation.
  • Topic: Cold War, Economics, War, Narcotics Trafficking
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Christopher J. Lamb, Martin Cinnamond
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The Barack Obama administration is debating alternatives to the population-centric counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan that it unveiled in March 2009. The reevaluation is prompted by the recent submission of supporting civil and military campaign plans that indicate substantial additional resources are required for success. The resource issue is important, but as General Stanley McChrystal, USA, the new commander of U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces in Afghanistan, argues, the need to pursue an “indirect” strategy that is sustainable for the Afghans and implemented with unified purpose is more important. Lack of progress in Afghanistan to date is due more to international donors and forces working at cross purposes, and unilaterally instead of with Afghans, than to insufficient resources.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, NATO, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, North Atlantic
  • Author: Sahr MuhammedAlly
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Human Rights First
  • Abstract: Eight years after launching Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) in Afghanistan—with a mission to kill and capture “high-value” al Qaeda and Taliban members and destroy the safe havens from which al Qaeda planned and directed the 9/11 attacks—the United States government has announced several significant detention reforms in Afghanistan. Human Rights First has closely monitored U.S. detention policies and practices since September 11, 2001. In this paper, we analyze the new detention reforms announced in September 2009 and make recommendations for further improvement in U.S. detention practices in line with U.S. policy interests and legal obligations. We base our recommendations on an analysis of the applicable humanitarian and human rights law and field visits to Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Human Rights, Terrorism, War, Prisons/Penal Systems
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Taliban
  • Author: Thomas R. Pickering, Barnett Rubin
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Asia Society
  • Abstract: The governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan are at risk from a combination of violent insurgency, loss of public confidence, and economic crisis. These trends threaten not only the loss of control by the Afghan and Pakistani governments, but also the spread of terrorist safe havens and, in the most extreme situation, the loss of control over some of Pakistan's nuclear weapons or materials.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Political Violence, Islam, Terrorism, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan
  • Author: Daniel Markey
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Today, few places on earth are as important to U.S. national security as the tribal belt along Pakistan's border with Afghanistan. The region serves as a safe haven for a core group of nationally and internationally networked terrorists, a training and recruiting ground for Afghan Taliban, and, increasingly, a hotbed of indigenous militancy that threatens the stability of Pakistan's own state and society. Should another 9/11-type attack take place in the United States, it will likely have its origins in this region. As long as Pakistan's tribal areas are in turmoil, the mission of building a new, democratic, and stable Afghanistan cannot succeed.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Asia, Taliban
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: There are strong indications that Uzbek security forces murdered one of Kyrgyzstan's most prominent journalists, Alisher Saipov, in October 2007 during the build-up to Uzbekistan's end of year presidential elections, most likely because of his involvement in Erk (Freedom), a leading exile opposition party. If this is the case, it would appear that the security organs, which are the key to keeping President Islam Karimov in power, are increasingly willing to move against any perceived danger, even if it involves pre-emptive strikes in foreign territory. This may be a sign not only of the ruthlessness of the regime but also of its increasing fragility. At the least it underlines the need for the U.S. and the European Union (EU) to resist the temptation to respond to Karimov's dubious December 2007 re-election with efforts at re-engagement, in the apparent hope of regaining or retaining military bases for Afghanistan operations or of outflanking Russia.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Ethnic Conflict, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, United States, Europe, Asia, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Afghanistan is not lost but the signs are not good. Its growing insurgency reflects a collective failure to tackle the root causes of violence. Six years after the Taliban's ouster, the international community lacks a common diagnosis of what is needed to stabilise the country as well as a common set of objectives. Long-term improvement of institutions is vital for both state building and counterinsurgency, but without a more strategic approach, the increased attention and resources now directed at quelling the conflict could even prove counterproductive by furthering a tendency to seek quick fixes. Growing tensions over burden sharing risk undermining the very foundations of multilateralism, including NATO's future. The U.S., which is demanding more commitment by allies, must realise that its unilateral actions weaken the will of others. At the same time, those sniping from the sidelines need to recognise that the Afghan intervention is ultimately about global security and do more.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Ethnic Conflict, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Asia, Taliban
  • Author: Brooke Smith-Windsor
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: Effects Based Approach to Operations (EBAO)3 and Comprehensive Approach (CA) are fashionable terms in NATO circles these days. Whether one is sitting in the North Atlantic Council (NAC), walking the corridors of the Strategic Commands, or travelling with a Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Afghanistan, they are heard with increasing frequency, sometimes distinctly, sometimes relationally, sometimes interchangeably. Indeed, the multiplicity of interpretations of both terms and their relationship to one another arguably rivals the incidence of their contemporary usage. Some are outright contradictory, others too general or ambiguous to be meaningful, still others so complex if not complicated they verge on the unworkable. To be fair to their originators, on the surface we do know this: the advocacy of EBAO within the Alliance emanated largely from military quarters and predated the introduction of CA that was only first officially introduced by the NAC at the Riga Summit of 2006. Despite their sequenced and respective military and civilian parentage, at their core both EBAO and CA aim to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of NATO's planning and conduct of crisis management operations through the greater consonance or “joining up” of military and civilian efforts, both within the Alliance and in its relations with outside actors. Beyond the latter description, however, the varied interpretations of EBAO and CA begin to abound leading any interested observer to justifiably question: are EBAO and CA the same, similar or different? Do they constitute a genuinely new way of undertaking operations or are they simply the latest reincarnation—however improved—of long-standing approaches to warfare and crisis management? And, at the end of the day, whose efforts and what instruments need to be joined up as a matter of priority, to what extent and by whom?
  • Topic: NATO, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Christopher M. Schnaubelt
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: What a difference 30,000 additional troops and a new strategy make. A few years ago, Afghanistan was commonly viewed as the model of a successful intervention while many politicians, military analysts, and pundits believed that the war in Iraq was being irretrievably lost. Yet today— although conditions still have a long way to go before normalcy has been achieved—the progress in Iraq following “the surge” directed by President Bush in January 2007 is widely recognized. All the indicators of violence: attacks against Iraqi infrastructure and government organizations; small arms, mortar and rocket attacks, and casualties among Iraqi civilians, Iraqi Security Forces, and Coalition Forces have sharply declined since July 2007. The situation has gone from being generally perceived as on the brink of disaster to being a success story (albeit belated and costly).
  • Topic: NATO, Terrorism, War, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Military Strategy
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Publication Date: 12-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Japan Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The state of Afghanistan remains fragile despite seven years of international assistance. Since 11 September 2001, the international community has focused on state-building and reconstruction in Afghanistan in the hopes of winning the "war on terror". However, in reality, anti-government forces have gained influence over the southern and eastern parts of the country, empowering the terrorist elements. The people's lives remain difficult, with weak government and rampant corruption. The initial confidence and hopes that people had toward the government and the international community have drastically diminished, leading them instead to rely reluctantly on anti-government forces for security and livelihood.
  • Topic: International Relations, NATO, Diplomacy, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Japan
  • Author: L.H.M. Ling, Ching-Chane Hwang
  • Publication Date: 04-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The New School Graduate Program in International Affairs
  • Abstract: Sun Tzu seems more popular than ever. The Bush Administration attributes its successful invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq to tactics in The Art of War such as “shock and awe” and “decapitation.” However, neither exists in Sun Tzu's manual. More seriously, this misappropriation reinforces an imperial hypermasculinity in US foreign policy given its neoliberal logic of “conversion or discipline” for Self/Other relations. Rival camps of imperial hypermasculinity arise in reaction, thereby rationalizing the US Self's resort to such in the first place. Locking the world into ceaseless rounds of hostility between opposed enemies, we argue, contradicts Sun Tzu's purpose. The Art of War sought to transform, not annihilate, the enemy as mandated by the cosmo-moral, dialectical world order that governed Sun Tzu's time. In misappropriating Sun Tzu, then, the Bush Administration turns The Art of War into mere kitsch.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, War, Political Theory
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Jan Koehler
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Collaborative Research Center (SFB) 700
  • Abstract: Das vorliegende Arbeitspapier untersucht Wirkungszusammenhänge von transnationalen Konstellationen staatlicher und nicht-staatlicher Akteure mit der Erzeugung von Sicherheit sowie Entwicklung als Governance-Leistung in Nordost-Afghanistan. Ausgangspunkt der Untersuchung ist die Frage, wie die afghanische Bevölkerung Veränderungen der eigenen Sicherheit sowie lokale Entwicklungsherausforderungen über die letzten Jahre wahrgenommen hat. Das Papier besteht aus zwei Teilen. Zunächst erläutert der Autor im Rahmen einer Fallstudie die relevanten internationalen, nationalen und lokalen Akteurskonstellationen in der Zielregion und bettet die Ergebnisse der quantitativen Befragungen ein in den Kontext der qualitativen Untersuchungsergebnisse zu lokalen gesellschaftlichen und politischen Entwicklungen. Anschließend wird detailliert das methodische Vorgehen erläutert, welches auf kreuzperspektivischer Analyse der quantitativ und qualitativ erhobenen Daten gründet. Die Analyse zeigt, dass im heutigen Afghanistan Sicherheit und Entwicklung als Ergebnis transnationaler Governance entstehen können. Diese Governance-Leistungen sind auf die lokale Ebene beschränkt; sie erreichen nicht die regionale oder gar die nationale Ebene. Die Untersuchung zeigt allerdings auch, dass transnationale Governance-Leistungen im Unterschied zur strategischen Zielsetzung der internationalen Interventen gerade die nationalen und sub-nationalen staatlichen Institutionen schwächen und deren Legitimität beeinträchtigt, die durch die Intervention aufgebaut und gefestigt werden sollen.
  • Topic: Security, Development, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia
  • Author: Mark G. Czelusta
  • Publication Date: 06-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Donald Rumsfeld's vision of a transformed United States military has been discussed by many and understood by few. It is no surprise that this lack of understanding has resulted in both significant simplifications and sweeping generalizations, to include the Reuters headline noted above. Even the term, “Rumsfeld's Transformation,” accounts for neither the historical influences that led to his vision, nor the multiple components of this transformational effort.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Middle East, Asia
  • Author: Markus Gauster
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Since the beginning of the US-led intervention in Afghanistan and the fall of the Taliban-regime in Kabul, the international community has focused on the implementation of security, the political transformation and the economic (re-)construction of the country. Through resolutions of the UN Security Council, civil and military Stability/Reconstruction (S/R) operations have been set up to provide assistance to the weak Afghan government. The efforts of ICM in Afghanistan have led to a surge in civilian activities provided by the armed forces and have caused an increased debate on the legitimacy , principles, range and rules of civil-military interaction.
  • Topic: Security, NATO, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Asia
  • Author: Samuel Grier
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: There is an expectation that the West, and the United States in particular, faces catastrophe in Iraq and Afghanistan. Confronted with significant casualties arising from the employment of asymmetric warfare by determined adversaries, the United States and its NATO and Coalition partners have found decisive solutions to both conflicts elusive. Similarly, the challenges confronting Iraqis are daunting, and according to the recently released declassified Key Findings of the U.S. National Intelligence Estimate, dependence on Coalition forces as an essential stabilizing element in Iraq will continue.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, International Cooperation, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Media Tenor International
  • Abstract: Coverage on the Middle East continues to be very prominent in many countries, particularly the United States, where close to 80% of all its international coverage is devoted to the region. In German television, other European countries together received the same volumes as the Middle East. This is a very high ratio, considering that German troops are only involved in Afghanistan, and not in other Arab countries. Coverage on the Middle East is considerably subdued in South African television when compared to other measured countries, perhaps because events in Europe received considerably more attention. German television committed the largest share of its coverage to international news (44%), followed by the United States and Britain (37%), while Arab television dedicated 29% of its coverage to the international arena. The lowest share of international focus was in South African television news (24%).
  • Topic: Political Violence, Islam, Terrorism, War, Mass Media
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Europe, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Jochen Hippler
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for Development and Peace
  • Abstract: With US forces in Iraq and Afghanistan fighting rather ruthless counter- insurgency campaigns, the topic of in surgency and counterinsurgency is of pressing relevance. At the same time, questions of internal violence in developing countries have generally been high on the political and academic agenda in the context of “failed” and “failing states”.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Middle East, Asia
  • Author: Barnett Rubin
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and all that followed, Afghans and the handful of internationals working on Afghanistan could hardly have imagined being fortunate enough to confront today's problems. The Bonn Agreement of December 2001 providing for the "reestablishment of permanent government institutions" in Afghanistan was fully completed with the adoption of a constitution in January 2004, the election of President Hamid Karzai in October 2004, and the formation of the National Assembly in December 2005.
  • Topic: Development, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Asia
  • Author: Patricia Weiss Fagen, Micah N. Bump
  • Publication Date: 02-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Although migrant workers, refugees and immigrants have been sending money, goods and ideas home for millennia, until about a decade ago donors and international finance agencies paid little attention to the phenomenon. Interest has grown exponentially as statistics show what we now call migrant remittances to be among the most important contributing factors to national economies in several countries. Nearly all the countries in the conflict, war-to-peace transition, and crisis categories are highly dependent on remittances. The slow recovery of livelihoods and persistent violence or repression ensure high levels of migration and the need for remittances in such countries for several years after conflict and crises have ended. By all accounts, migrant remittances reduce poverty in important ways in developing countries. Research shows that migrants transfer funds and invest in their countries of origin at times when international investment has all but disappeared. By serving these purposes in countries emerging from or still experiencing conflicts (e.g., Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Somalia, Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire and others), remittances can be seen as a sine qua non for peace and rebuilding.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Peace Studies, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Sri Lanka, Kosovo, Liberia, Somalia
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Nearly four years after 9/11 , hardly a day passes without the "war on terrorism" making headlines, with Iraq, Afghanistan, Indonesia and now London holding centre stage. But away from the spot light, a quiet, dirty conflict is being waged in Somalia: in the rubble-strewn streets of the ruined capital of this state without a government, Mogadishu, al-Qaeda operatives, jihadi extremists, Ethiopian security services and Western-backed counter-terrorism networks are engaged in a shadowy and complex contest waged by intimidation, abduction and assassination. The U.S. has had some success but now risks evoking a backlash. Ultimately a successful counter-terrorism strategy requires more attention to helping Somalia with the twin tasks of reconciliation and state building.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Africa, United States, Iraq, Indonesia, Middle East, London, Somalia
  • Author: Steven C. Welsh
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: Spc. Charles A. Graner, Jr., on Jan. 14, 2005, became the fifth U.S. soldier convicted for Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse, all of them reservists. Graner, a prison guard in civilian life, was convicted at a general court martial for maltreatment of persons subject to his orders, conspiracy, assault, indecent acts and dereliction of duty. Unlike several earlier trials for Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse, this trial took place not in Iraq but at Fort Hood, Texas. The jury of 10 officers and enlisted men, all of whom had served in Iraq or Afghanistan, sentenced Graner on Jan. 15, 2004, to 10 years in prison (five less than the maximum possible) and to reduction in rank to private, dishonorable discharge and forfeiture of pay and allowances.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Human Rights, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Middle East, Arabia, Arab Countries
  • Author: Anders Tang Friborg
  • Publication Date: 07-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The key challenge in the Afghan post-war situation has been how to re-establish a sovereign and effective state structure in a country affected by more than two decades of conflict and war. Since the fall of the Taliban, Afghanistan has been facing one of the most comprehensive state-building exercises in recent years. Many of the state institutions were formally in place for the Karzai government, but the capacity was limited and they were competing with various parallel command structures. The re-establishment of a state can be analysed along many different dimensions, but three overall categories have been chosen to structure this paper: (i) the authority and control over the use of force throughout the entire territory of the state; (ii) the establishment of a legitimate government with executive powers at central and local level, and an independent judicial system; and (iii) the authority to regulate the economic resources of the country.
  • Topic: Security, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Ivan Eland
  • Publication Date: 10-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Independent Institute
  • Abstract: The United States has plunged into an Iraqi swamp. The swashbuckling victory in the first Gulf War led to the most egregious sin that can be made in the military affairs—hubris and underestimation of the enemy. The U.S. and Soviet superpowers made the same mistake respectively in Vietnam in the sixties and seventies and Afghanistan in the eighties. But as those quagmires fade from memory, government officials apparently have to relearn the same lessons.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Soviet Union, Vietnam
  • Author: Kaysie Studdard
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: This policy report distills key findings from research commissioned by the International Peace Academy's program on Economic Agendas in Civil Wars (EACW) on the regional dimensions of war economies and the challenges they pose for peacemaking and peacebuilding. Drawing from analytical research as well as case studies of Afghanistan in Central Asia, Sierra Leone in West Africa, and Bosnia and Herzegovina in Southeast Europe, a number of key issues concerning the political economy of regional war economies and lessons for more effective peacebuilding were identified: The notion that internal conflicts have economic "spill over" or "spill into" effects on neighboring states needs to be extended and deepened. Policymakers should work to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the interstate impacts of civil conflict that gives greater weight to systemic cross-border networks and less to potentially 'one-off' transborder phenomena.
  • Topic: Economics, Peace Studies, Regional Cooperation, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Europe, Central Asia, Bosnia, Herzegovina, West Africa
  • Author: Carl Conetta
  • Publication Date: 02-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Project on Defense Alternatives
  • Abstract: Among those endeavors that a state or a people may undertake, none is more terrible than war. None has repercussions more far-reaching or profound. Thus, a grave responsibility to one's own nation and to the global community attends any decision to go to war. And part of this responsibility is to estimate and gauge the effects of war, including the collateral damage and civilian casualties that it incurs.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Central Asia, Middle East
  • Author: Charles V. Peña
  • Publication Date: 11-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Currently, the United States relies on conventional bunker-busting bombs—such as the GBU-28, which was used in both Afghanistan and Iraq—to destroy hardened, underground targets. Legislation is pending in Congress that would provide funding for research—but not engineering or development—for low-yield, earth-penetrating nuclear weapons for targets that cannot be destroyed by conventional bunker busters.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War, Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Jean-Yves Haine
  • Publication Date: 02-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: The year 2002 was characterised by the stabilisation of Afghanistan, the prospect of war in Iraq, the suicidal, deadly impasse in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and North Korea's declared nuclear proliferation. There was thus a significant deterioration in the international environment. In these conditions of growing uncertainty, in both the short and long term, the Union, which now extends to the borders of the Russian and Arab-Muslim worlds, appears as a haven of stability and peace. The peaceful reunification of the European continent that the enlargement of both the Union and the Atlantic Alliance represents will stand out as one of the positive events of 2002. Yet this pacification of Europe has taken place in a world that is still suffering the consequences of the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001. To start with, the United States has developed a conception of its security that is both more sovereign and more comprehensive. The new National Security Strategy includes pre-emptive war among its ways of fighting terrorism and seems to favour coalitions of convenience rather than institutionalised alliances. There is no doubt that this attitude has raised questions in Europe and led to transatlantic difficulties. But this unilateralist fever early in the year gave way to more realistic, pragmatic attitudes with President Bush's speech to the UN on 12 September 2002 and the subsequent adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1441.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, Europe, Central Asia, Israel, North Korea, Palestine, United Nations
  • Author: William D. Hartung
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Fourth Freedom Forum
  • Abstract: The Bush administration's war on terrorism and its proposed military intervention in Iraq have sparked the steepest increases in military and security spending in two decades. Since September 11, 2001, the federal government has approved over $110 billion in increased military spending and military aid. Spending on national defense is slated to reach $399 billion in the Fiscal Year 2004 budget, and to rise to over $500 billion annually by the end of this decade. These vast sums do not include the costs of the ongoing war in Afghanistan or a war with Iraq. Steven Kosiak of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments estimates that only 5 to 10 percent of the Fiscal Year 2003 Pentagon budget is being set aside for anti-terror activities and homeland security.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Government, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 02-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for the Study of Diplomacy, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • Abstract: This panel on global democratization is part of an ongoing ISD effort to focus policy debate on a topic of growing importance. The first in this series of panel discussions was held shortly after 9/11, and was entitled "Sustaining Global Democratization: a priority now more than ever". That title could serve well for this panel also, as the connected issues of democratization and nation building are more timely and urgent than ever. In the new National Security Strategy, the President commits the U.S. to "extend the benefits of freedom across the globe." Democratization is no longer on the fringes of the policy debate. Uppermost on the agenda of policy maker and analyst are the open questions relating to Afghanistan, Iraq and the West-Bank/Gaza. How our democracy promoting goals are to be pursued and achieved in these and other cases is far from clear. Panelists today and at subsequent forums will bring the benefit of their wide experience to these issues. The problems that we discuss are global in nature. Today's panel will for the most part focus on the Middle East. Other regions will be the focus of attention at subsequent forums.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East, Gaza
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: With the continuing military campaign in Afghanistan, the international community has fundamentally shifted its policies toward Pakistan. The government of President Pervez Musharraf has been repeatedly praised as a key ally in the war against terrorism, and the U.S. alone has indicated that it will offer Pakistan more than one billion dollars in assistance. This briefing explores some of the most important dynamics underpinning the international community's revised approach to Pakistan and suggests that much of the conventional wisdom relies on dangerously faulty assumptions with important implications for future policy and regional security.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, South Asia