Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security and U.S. Policy

$57.00

Kenneth Katzman  (Editor)

Series: Politics and Economics of the Middle East

U.S. and outside assessments of the effort to stabilize Afghanistan are mixed and subject to debate; the Administration notes progress on reconstruction, governance and security in many areas of Afghanistan, particularly the U.S.-led eastern sector of Afghanistan. However, a November 2007 Bush Administration review of U.S. efforts in Afghanistan reportedly concluded that overall progress was inadequate. This mirrors recent outside studies that contain relatively essimistic assessments, emphasizing a growing sense of insecurity in areas previously considered secure, increased numbers of suicide attacks, and increasing aggregate poppy cultivation, as well as increasing divisions within the NATO alliance about the relative share of combat among the nations contributing to the peacekeeping mission. Both the official U.S. as well as outside assessments are increasingly pointing to Pakistan as failing — either through lack of attention or eliberate strategy — to prevent Taliban commanders from operating from Pakistan. To try to gain momentum against the insurgency, the United States is considering new initiatives including adding U.S. troops to the still combat-intense south, possibly assuming U.S. command of the southern sector, and increasing direct U.S. action against Taliban concentrations inside Pakistan. Politically, the Afghan government remains reasonably stable. The post-Taliban transition was completed with the convening of a parliament in December 2005; a new constitution was adopted in January 2004, successful presidential elections were held on October 9, 2004, and parliamentary elections took place on September 18, 2005. The parliament has become an arena for factions that have fought each other for nearly three decades to debate and peacefully resolve differences, as well as a center of political pressure on President Hamid Karzai.

Major regional strongmen have been marginalized. Afghan citizens are enjoying personal freedoms forbidden by the Taliban, and women are participating in economic and political life. Presidential elections are to be held in the fall of 2009, with parliamentary and provincial elections to follow one year later. To help stabilize Afghanistan, the United States and partner countries are deploying a 47,000 troop NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) that now commands peacekeeping throughout Afghanistan, including the restive south. Of those, 19,000 of the 31,000 U.S. forces in Afghanistan are part of ISAF. The U.S. and partner forces also run regional enclaves to secure reconstruction (Provincial Reconstruction Teams, PRTs), and are building an Afghan National Army and National Police. The United States has given Afghanistan over $23 billion (appropriated, including FY2008 to date) since the fall of the Taliban, including funds to equip and train Afghan security forces.

Table of Contents

Preface

Chapter 1. Background to Recent Developments

Chapter 2. Post-War Stabilization and Reconstruction

Chapter 3. Post-War Security Operations and Force Capacity Building

Chapter 4. Regional Context

Chapter 5. U.S. and International Aid to Afghanistan and Development Issues

Chapter 6. Residual Issues From Past Conflicts

Chapter 7. Appendix: U.S. and International Sanctions Lifted

Index

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