Sunday, November 15, 2015


Anxiety Grows in Afghanistan. The security situation is going downhill in Kabul and across many parts of Afghanistan. One constantly hears the drumbeat of Resolute Support Headquarters that the Afghan National Defense Security Forces (ANDSF) are continuing to improve their capabilities; but that feeling of optimism is not reflected in the events on the ground. Read more in "Anxiety Grows as Conditions Worsen in Afghanistan", NPR Parallels, November 10, 2015.

Video - Foreign Afghan Interior Minister. In a 90-minute video by C-Span we hear about the security situation in Afghanistan and future prospects. The speaker, Mohammad Umer Daudzai,  served as President Karzai's chief of staff from 2003-2005 and 2007 to 2011. He also served as the Minister of Interior (MoI) for a period of time (2013-2014) as well as the Afghan ambassador to Pakistan and Iran.

WTO and Afghanistan. "After nearly 11 years of negotiations, Afghanistan and the World Trade Organization (WTO) have finally agreed on the country's terms of accession to the global trade body. But will this help revive the flailing economy?" Read "How joining the WTO could impact Afghanistan", Deutsche Welle, Nov 2015.

COIN and Development in FATA. Hijab Shah, a columist, has penned an article posted in Georgetown Security Studies Review, November 12, 2015, entitled "Counterinsurgency and Development in FATA: Lessons from US Experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan". The Pakistani armed forces claim to have entered the decisive phase in their counterinsurgency operations against the Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) in the country's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). In order to consolidate the victory the government will need to step up its post-conflict stabilization activities in FATA.

Training for Human Domain. "This monograph offers an outline for educating U.S. and allied service personnel in fundamental human domain skills and argues against their being overlooked in favor of technical solutions.Experience from Afghanistan and Iraq has demonstrated the vital nature of understanding human terrain, with conclusions relevant far beyond counterinsurgency operations in the Islamic world." Read Training Humans for the Human Domain, by Dr. Steve Tatham and Mr. Keir Giles, Strategic Studies Institute, United States Army War College Press, 61 pages, November 2015.

Gender Stuff and DoD. According to the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) the worlds military's need to improve the way it addresses 21st century security challenges. U.S. Army I Corps recently incorporated WPS into the Talisman Sabre 2015 exercise (with Australia). Read comments on this development by Brenda Oppermann - a stability operations advisor, gender expert and human rights lawyer - in "DoD Finally Gets the Point of Women, Peace, and Security", Small Wars Journal, November 13, 2015.

New Strategy for Afghanistan Needed. Daniel L. Davis, a retired Lt. Col. of the U.S. Army and now a analyst on national security, believes that the mission for Afghanistan needs to change. The focus on a military solution has not worked and will not work; we should try for a negotiated political solution to the conflict.  Read more in "America Needs a New Afghanistan Strategy", The National Interest, November 10, 2015.

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