Afghanistan/Pakistan

Latest in Afghanistan/Pakistan

Foreign Policy Essay

The ‘India Question’ in Afghanistan

Editor’s Note: Pakistan and the United States are not the only important outside actors in Afghanistan. India has long courted the government in Kabul, and Islamabad views this potential relationship with alarm. Avinash Paliwal of SOAS explains India’s policies regarding Afghanistan and discusses how this might shift in the years to come.

Daniel Byman

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Foreign Policy Essay

Trump’s Three Missteps on Pakistan

Editor’s Note: Pakistan is where good policy options go to die. U.S. administrations have struggled to develop a coherent and effective policy toward Islamabad, trying to coerce and co-opt it, with limited success at best. Daniel Markey of SAIS offers a readout of Prime Minister Khan’s visit to Washington. He points out mistakes the Trump administration made and argues that a continued tough approach is necessary.

Daniel Byman

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Foreign Policy Essay

The U.S. Drone War in Pakistan Revisited

Editor’s Note: The armed drone has become the emblem of U.S. counterterrorism, but critics charge that it leads to high numbers of civilian casualties and a popular backlash in places like Pakistan. Asfandyar Mir, a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford, argues that the drone campaign has proven highly effective at degrading (though not ending) al-Qaeda and other groups in Pakistan. He lays out conditions under which a drone campaign would be effective elsewhere, noting the importance of intelligence and the need for a rapid-response capacity.

Foreign Policy Essay

In Afghanistan, the Glass is Still Better Seen as Half Full: A Response to Gary Owen

Editor's Note: In the latest entry in our ongoing dialogue on the future of Afghanistan, Stephen Watts and Sean Mann respond to Gary Owen's critique of their piece on the future of Afghanistan, arguing that although things may not be going "great" in Afghanistan, the picture is not quite as bleak as Owen makes it out to be.

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Foreign Policy Essay

Sorry, Folks: Things Are Not Actually Going So Great in Afghanistan

Editor’s Note: A few weeks ago, we ran a provocative piece by Stephen Watts and Sean Mann in which they argued that in both its politics and in its development, Afghanistan is doing better than is commonly believed. Gary Owen, a civilian development worker who has spent the last several years working on the ground in Afghanistan, begs to differ. He paints a far gloomier picture of Afghanistan, arguing that the country and U.S. policy have a long way to go.

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