May 30, 2017

Afghanistan’s Cosmetic Surgery ‘Boom’

Hamkar Plastic Surgery Hospital, Kabul.  (Photo by Ali Latifi, via Himal Southasian)

What the recent boom in the cosmetic industry means for the Afghanistan's middle class. Read More »

New Dynamics of Pakistan-Afghanistan Relations

Afghan President Hamid Karzai at a meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his visit to Islamabad, last November,

Islamabad must build on the unusual goodwill in Kabul to prove it is sincere in cooperating against terrorism. Read More »

Afghanistan at the Crossroads

Afghan presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani, left, shakes hands with rival Abdullah Abdullah, right, at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan on July 12, 2014, after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry helped broker an agreement on a technical and political plan to resolve the disputed outcome of the election between them.  (Photo by U.S. Embassy Kabul, Afghanistan , Creative Commons License)

Economically dependent on the foreign presence, Afghanistan will need to work hard to succeed on its own. Read More »

Turkey’s Role in Post-2014 Afghanistan

A Turkish soldiers greets Hajj pilgrims from Afghanistan. (Photo by isafmedia, Creative Commons License)

One analyst thinks that Turkey's most successful foreign policy has been that practiced in Afghanistan during the past ten years. Read More »

Reconnecting Afghanistan

UK Prime Minister David Cameron hosted Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani, Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at No 10 on December 5, 2014, Crown Copyright photo by  Arron Hoare, Creative Commons License)

Afghanistan has finally found its “man of destiny” in Ashraf Ghani. How long before some leader in Pakistan rises above self, selfishness and greed for the sake of the country? Read More »

Withdrawal Symptoms in Afghanistan: An Indian View

(U.S. Army photo by Spc. Lan Kim/ISAFMedia, Creative Commons License)

Many fear that after the U.S. withdrawal, the Taliban will take over southern parts of the country with growing terrorism and insecurity threatening a weak government in Kabul. Read More »

Talking to the Taliban, Again

A British soldier on a military vehicle travels to a combat outpost in the outskirts of Lashkargah, provincial capital of Helmand Province. (Photo by Mohammad Popal/IRIN)

As foreign military forces prepare to complete their withdrawal from combat operations in Afghanistan at the end of the year and as it becomes increasingly clear that large swathes of territory will remain under Taliban control, aid organizations have felt both compelled and empowered to talk to them. Read More »

Challenges for the Afghan Government

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry sits with Abdullah Abdullah, left, and Ashraf Ghani, right, at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan on July 12, 2014, after he helped broker an agreement on a technical and political plan to resolve the disputed outcome of the election between them. (State Department photo/ Public Domain)

Only bilateral and multilateral trust and sincerity will help promote the national reconciliation in Afghanistan. But the ground situation hardly portends well because Dr Abdullah Abdullah, the Afghan People’s Dialogue on Peace, India and Russia on the one hand, and Dr Ashraf Ghani, Pakistan, USA, and China, on the other, find themselves at variance. Read More »

WFP Shortfall Fuels Afghan Funding Fears

Two IDP children from southern Helmand province standing behind their mud hut on the outskirts of Kabul. (Photo by Mohammad Popal/IRIN)

Aid agencies are calling on international donors to show their support for Afghanistan even as they face ongoing crises. Humanitarian budgets in Afghanistan had often been tied to military objectives since the 2001 US-led invasion. As foreign troops prepare to pull out, fears of declining budgets are growing.  Read More »

Taxpayers’ Money & Media Publicity of Fraud

A man tamps down soil inside a newly completed greenhouse at the Farah director of agriculture, irrigation and livestock's facilities in Farah City. (Photo by isafmedia, Creative Commons License)

Has the U.S. created a government that the Afghans simply cannot afford? The US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction thinks so, and says that the US has spent more than $104 billion for Afghan reconstruction and raises the question “what have we gotten for the investment” after committing “more funds to reconstruct Afghanistan, than the US spent to rebuild Europe after World War II under the Marshall Plan?” Read More »