Member Of John Boehner's 'Kitchen Cabinet' Of Economists Supports Afghanistan Withdrawal
Huffington Post by Amanda Terkel
WASHINGTON -- As Congress looks at all sorts of discretionary non-defense projects to cut to reduce the deficit, a core member of House Speaker John Boehner's (R-Ohio) circle of economic advisers is advocating the United States reduce its footprint internationally, including by pulling out of the war in Afghanistan.
Anatomy of an Afghan War Tragedy
Los Angeles Times by David S. Cloud
Nearly three miles above the rugged hills of central Afghanistan, American eyes silently tracked two SUVs and a pickup truck as they snaked down a dirt road in the pre-dawn darkness.
The vehicles, packed with people, were 3 1/2 miles from a dozen U.S. special operations soldiers, who had been dropped into the area hours earlier to root out insurgents. The convoy was closing in on them.
War in Afghanistan is destabilising Pakistan, says president
guardian.co.uk by Simon Tisdall
The war in Afghanistan is destabilising Pakistan and seriously undermining efforts to restore its democratic institutions and economic prosperity after a decade of military dictatorship, Pakistan's president, Asif Ali Zardari, has told the Guardian.
A Motley Consensus on the Afghanistan Line Item
New York Times by James Dao
It isn’t every day that liberals like Representative Jim McGovern, a Democrat from Massachusetts, appear at Capitol Hill news conferences with conservative stalwarts like Representative Walter B. Jones, a Republican from North Carolina.
War Pulls Apart Afghan Families
The Washington post with Foreign Policy by Joshua Partlow
KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — For most of their lives, Gul and Razziq slept under the same dusty blankets on the same dirt floors. They toiled side by side in the same potato fields and prayed in the same mosque, two poor brothers in a forgotten corner of the Afghanistan war.
As debt grows, so does US exposure to attack
The Christian Science Monitor by Travis Sharp
On Wednesday, President Obama grabbed onto one of the most highly charged issues in American politics: deficit reduction. The president’s speech offered a sensible way forward, even if his proposal was light on specifics. Now that the cameras are off, however, the real political challenges begin. Whether pursued through changes to tax rates, Medicare, or military spending, deficit reduction presents limitless ways for politicians to lose their jobs. And yet the American people demand that their elected leaders accept these risks, and are right to make such demands, because they sense what many experts now know: Growing federal debt threatens the long-term national security of the United States
Few politicians say it, but most think it: our Afghan war is a disaster
guardian.co.uk by Julian Glover
Now, in Helmand, the military are doing just this. They call their murderous night raids against insurgents a bold strategy for success, when really the intensification of violence is evidence of failure. We are, as David Miliband will warn in a speech on Wednesday, trapped in a war with no plan other than to kill as many baddies as we can before fleeing.
One Week in Vain: An operation in Nerkh
Afghanistan Analysts Network by Thomas Ruttig
In March, US troops carried out an operation to secure the volatile district of Nerkh, just south of Kabul. They thought it will take them less than a week to bring ‘visible improvements’, establish a couple of shuras and ‘local police’. A Spanish journalist witnessed this operation and found that nothing of this finally materialised - a case far from the positive picture General Petraeus recently presented to his country’ Congress. AAN has translated and summarised her articles; the context is by AAN’s Senior Analyst Thomas Ruttig.
An Endgame for Afghanistan
The New York Times by David Miliband
The epochal events in the Middle East this year have redefined foreign policy. There are new priorities and challenges that need intensive Western engagement. But it is imperative that the war in Afghanistan does not become the “forgotten war,” as happened with such dangerous consequences after 2002
The Surge Still to Come
The Afghanistan Study Group by Will Keola Thomas
Perhaps it’s the partisan gridlock and imminent threat of government shutdown over the proposed $33 – $40 billion in budget cuts that is leading folks to ponder the hundreds of billions that have been spent over the last decade in support of a corrupt government in Kabul. Or maybe it’s the possibility of a catastrophic default should Congress not agree to raise the U.S.’s $14.3 trillion debt limit before it is reached sometime between now and May 16 that is beginning to draw more attention to the cost of the war.
Al Qaeda Returns: They Say Timing Is Everything
The Afghanistan Study Group by Ed Kenney
One day after a White House Report on Afghanistan and Pakistan stated that “al-Qa’ida’s senior leadership in Pakistan is weaker and under more sustained pressure than at any other point since it fled Afghanistan”, journalists from the Wall Street Journal report that al Qaeda (AQ) is moving back into Konar province...Does this fundamentally change the Afghanistan Study Group’s recommendations? The answer is an unequivocal no.