There Is No Military Path to Victory in Afghanistan

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By Professor Rajan Menon (originally written for the National Interest, 9/12/2016)

Few will say it, but the facts are indisputable: America’s war in Afghanistan has failed. There comes a time when persisting in a lost cause amounts to foolishness, indeed irresponsibility. That time has arrived.

Washington’s minimal goals were to vanquish the Taliban, root out Al Qaeda and build a stable, effective government whose army and police would eventually fight the Taliban independently and successfully while maintaining law and order across the land. These objectives have not been meet.

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Military Madness: Matt Kennard on his book “Irregular Army”

Recently, Michael Busch, Coordinator at the Colin Powell Center and lecturer in the Department of Political Science at the City College of New York, interviewed journalist Matt Kennard about his book, Irregular Army, which was published in time for the tenth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The interview in its entirety has been published on the Huffington Post.

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Recently, Michael Busch, Coordinator at the Colin Powell Center and lecturer in the Department of Political Science at the City College of New York, interviewed journalist Matt Kennard about his book, Irregular Army, which was published in time for the tenth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The interview in its entirety has been published on the Huffington Post

This past March marked the tenth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, a decade of fighting, which claimed hundreds of thousands of lives, destroyed an entire country, and destabilized the broader Middle East. As journalist Matt Kennard argues in his new book, Irregular Army, the war in Iraq — as well as that in Afghanistan — also had deleterious consequences for the U.S. military itself. Faced with declining enlistment numbers as fighting dragged on year after year with no clear end in sight, Kennard shows that the American armed forces looked for alternatives to populate its ranks. In the process, regulations were weakened, rewritten and in some cases, not enforced. Continue reading “Military Madness: Matt Kennard on his book “Irregular Army””

Center Alumnus Ethan Frisch: Working for Change in Afghanistan

Colin Powell Leadership Alumnus Ethan Frisch (2006–2008) is now working in Afghanistan with the Aga Khan Foundation, a humanitarian organization. We recently followed-up with Ethan to learn more about his work, goals, and trajectory.

efrisch_crop_vhColin Powell Leadership Alumnus Ethan Frisch (2006–2008) is now working in Afghanistan with the Aga Khan Foundation, a humanitarian organization. We recently followed up with Ethan to learn more about his work, goals, and trajectory.

What are you doing in Afghanistan?
I’m working for the Aga Khan Foundation–Afghanistan as the national program coordinator for engineering, helping to oversee the administration of grants dealing with physical infrastructure and engineering projects in northern Afghanistan. I’m based at AKF’s headquarters in Kabul, working closely with our regional teams and traveling regularly throughout the five provinces in which AKF works. Continue reading “Center Alumnus Ethan Frisch: Working for Change in Afghanistan”