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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “al Qaeda”

The Python Problem: Reflections On The War On Terror, 17 Years Later

Following the 9/11 attacks, successive U.S. administrations have promulgated three consistent objectives: First, to prevent additional mass casualty attacks on our homeland. Second, to find and punish those responsible. And third, to shatter the larger transnational terrorist movement’s capability and capacity to be a future threat.

Read Here – War On The Rocks

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Will Pakistan Part Ways With Its Proxies?

Pakistan has to come to terms and do away with its proxies if it is interested in retaining the friendship with China; the BRICS declaration is a gentle nudge. Commenting on China’s regional approach to political, security, and economic issues, former Pakistani senator and analyst Afrasiab Khattak writes in one of his latest articles that “China is not content with looking at Afghanistan or India from Pakistan’s point of view anymore.”

Read Here – The Diplomat

The Islamic State’s First Year

The fall of Mosul, the second-largest city in Iraq, was both the culmination of a blitzkrieg campaign IS had started in winter 2013 in Iraq and in Syria, seizing the city of Raqqa in May of that year, and the prelude to a wider strategic phase to deepen and expand the group’s dominance. Over the past year, IS has held on to Mosul and Raqqa and, in May, captured two more cities in Iraq and Syria, Ramadi and Palmyra; governed swaths of territory over the two Levantine countries; and oversaw an economy with large-scale revenues owing primarily to oil sales from the captured Iraqi fields. Making inroads with the local tribes, shielding the residents of the cities it controls from criminality and paying salaries to its foot soldiers, IS has also displaced — not without an ongoing fight — the once all-mighty global Islamist group al-Qaeda.

Read Here – Al Monitor

Forgetting Afghanistan

Afghanistan was once the good war. Seeking righteous vengeance for 9/11, nearly 90 percent of the American public initially backed a crusade to topple the Taliban regime in Kabul and purge the country of al-Qaeda. For years, Barack Obama described Afghanistan as the center of gravity in the struggle against international terrorism. In 2009, Obama surged U.S. forces in Afghanistan to nearly 100,000 troops. With money no object, U.S. officials tried to win over Afghans through initiatives like an Afghan version of Sesame Street called Sesame Garden (unfortunately, the Count character had to be cut because Afghan kids weren’t familiar with Dracula and were confused by his fangs). And then the good war turned bad.

Read Here – The Atlantic

How Obama Opened His Heart To The ‘Muslim World’

Historians will likely look back at Obama’s policy toward Islam with a combination of curiosity and incredulousness. While some may credit the president for his good intentions, others might fault him for being naïve and detached from a complex and increasingly lethal reality. For the Middle East continues to fracture and pose multiple threats to America and its allies. Even if he succeeds in concluding a nuclear deal with Iran, the expansion of the Islamic State and other jihadi movements will underscore the failure of Obama’s outreach to Muslims.

Read Here – Foreign Policy

Obama’s Speech in Cairo, 2009

Osama Bin Laden’s Book Shelf

On May 20, 2015, the ODNI released a sizeable tranche of documents recovered during the raid on the compound used to hide Usama bin Ladin. The release, which followed a rigorous interagency review, aligns with the President’s call for increased transparency–consistent with national security prerogatives–and the 2014 Intelligence Authorization Act, which required the ODNI to conduct a review of the documents for release. The release contains two sections. The first is a list of non-classified, English-language material found in and around the compound. The second is a selection of now-declassified documents.

Read Here – Office of the Director of National Intelligence, United States

Courtesy: ABC News

 

Figuring ISIS

The Islamic State is no mere collection of psychopaths. It is a religious group with carefully considered beliefs, among them that it is a key agent of the coming apocalypse. Here’s what that means for its strategy—and for how to stop it.

 

Read Here – The Atlantic

Afghanistan = China+India-West?

The China-India relationship is still riddled with suspicion from the 1962 war, and a smoldering border dispute and rivalry in the maritime sphere complicates relations further. But as Western forces are drawn down in Afghanistan at the end of this year, cooperation may be the best way to establish the regional stability that the country needs for its future growth and security.

Read Here – The Diplomat

What After Karzai?

The arrival of Hamid Karzai, on the heels of the U.S. invasion in 2001, promised Afghans a break from the recent bloody past. Karzai’s lack of involvement in the long, brutal civil war that followed the Soviet retreat in 1989 raised the possibility of a unified country after a decade of battling fiefs.

Read Here – The Atlantic

Jihadis and Their Petro State

The smoke rising from the Iraqi city of Baiji—so dark and thick that it’s visible from U.S. weather satellites—is evidence of one thing: The jihadist conflict engulfing Iraq is fueled by oil.

Read Here – Businessweek

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