Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

AAN in the Media

AAN In The Media – February 2010

5 min

Niederländische Methoden (Dutch Methods)
Neue Zürcher Zeitung am Sonntag, 28 February 2010
In this article about the soon-to-end ‘Dutch model’ in Uruzgan, Thomas Ruttig is quoted as saying that one aim of the current Marja offensive is to project that the ANA and ANP build-up is working.

Angriff auf Gästehäuser (Attack on Guest Houses)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 27 February 2010
In his report from Kabul, Thomas Ruttig poins at the link between this day’s attack and the restarted Indo-Pak talks.

Was kann sich in Afghanistan in den nächsten zwei Jahren ändern?
WDR radio, 26 February 2010
On the day of the extension of the German military mandate for Afghanistan, Thomas Ruttig discusses Afghanistan’s perspective in the next two years (audio, in German)

An attack aimed at India
Guardian online, 26 February 2010
Julian Borger’s Global Security Blog quotes extensively from Thomas Ruttig’s AAN blog on Friday’s Taleban-claimed attack on two Kabul guesthouses

Gibt es die Talibanhochburg Marjah überhaupt? (Does the Taleban Stronghold Marja Exist at All?)
Der Standard (Vienna), 25 February 2010
The Marja discussion continues: The Austrian daily answers question of its internet site users about the existence of Marja, quoting experts like AAN’s Thomas Ruttig and Bonn University’s Conrad Schetter

Presidential Decree De-Fangs Afghanistan’s Election Watchdog
UN Dispatch, 24 February 2010
Blog by Una Moore quotes Martine van Bijlert’s blog on Afghanistan’s new electoral law.

Nach dem jüngsten NATO-Angriff in Afghanistan
WDR radio, 23 February 2010
In this short interview, Thomas Ruttig discusses repercussions of the latest air strike with civilian casualties in Daykundi province (audio, in German).

How to cook a 3-Star Dinner
Foodie in a War Zone (blog), 22 February 2010
An impressive guest list, an amazing dinner and interesting talk about reconciliation. AAN was there.

Birding in Badakhshan
New York Times online, 22 February 2010
AAN’s first Afghanistan birdwatch blog (on Pashto Mashto) has returned via the NYT’s ‘At War’ blog – thanks to Rogene Fisher

Battle for Marja not only militarily significant
Washington Post, 22 February 2010
Thomas Ruttig on Marja: “Marja is not the single most important geographical point in Afghanistan that will turn around the war. (…) It’s not the battle of Stalingrad. It’s more like a symbol.”

In der Opiumhölle (In the Opium Hell)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 20 February 2010
In this report about Helmand where the latest ISAF offensive is continuing, Thomas Ruttig describes the intricacies of Afghanistan’s drug economy

Man in the News: Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar
Financial Times,19 February 2010
Matthew Green picks up Thomas Ruttig’s point in his analysis of Mulla Baradar’s capture that he would not be the first leader of an insurgent movement that brokers a deal from within jail.

Apakah Politik Pakistan terhadap Taliban Berubah?
Deutsche Welle radio (Indonesian service),19 February 2010
Interview with AAN’s Thomas Ruttig about the arrest of Taleban leader Mulla Baradar (same text also in DW’s Pashto/Dari, Turkish, Romanian and Bulgarian services)

Quietly, a critical new electoral reform draft makes the rounds
France 24, 19 February 2010
Article quotes Martine van Bijlert on the deep divide between how the international community and the Afghan government view the post-election debacle: “Whereas international experts and diplomats felt that it was the ECC that in the end provided legitimacy to a flawed process, the Afghan government believes that the ECC made the process unnecessarily complicated and messy, and that they are better off without such a strong international influence on the process.”

Afganistán, en el vórtice de intereses enfrentados (Afghanistan, in the vortex of conflicting interests)
Internacional, 19 February 2010
Martine van Bijlert (here described as “Martin”) is quoted on the impact of the arrests of senior Taliban leaders in Pakistan, saying that the movement has a history of dealing rather well with the loss of senior figures.

Die starke Hand des Preisringers (The strong hand of the prize wrestler)
Wochenzeitung (Zurich), 18 February 2010
Thomas Ruttig’s reportage on Uruzgan and different kinds of official and parallel police (in German, also see NeuesDeutschland, 28 Jan. 2010)

Trumpfkarte für Pakistan (Baradar’s Arrest, A Trumpcard for Pakistan)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 17 February 2010
In the commentary, Thomas Ruttig argues that with Mulla Baradar’s arrest, Pakistan might have secured influence in a possible Afghan reconciliation -after having arrested Taleban in the past that wanted to talk

Festnahme eines Taliban-Führers (Taleban Leader Arrested)
Deutschlandradio Kultur, 17 February 2010
The Webschau (web review) of this German quality radio station quotes from AAN’s blog about MUlla Baradar’s arrest

Terrorists Without Borders
The New Republic, 17 February 2010
New York Times journalist David Rhode reviews ‘Decoding the New Taliban’ with some AAN member contributions and Mulla Zaeef’s ‘My Life with the Taliban’

Baradar: Why Now?
The New Yorker online, 16 February 2010
‘The more the Taliban’s leaders enjoying sanctuary in Karachi or Quetta refuse to lash themselves to Pakistani political strategy, the more vulnerable they become to a knock on the door in the middle of the night’, writes Steve Coll in his Think Tank blog and links to Thomas Ruttig’s blog on the issue which he calls ‘authoritative’. Thank you, Steve!

Immer wieder Helmand (Helmand, time and again)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 16 Febuary 2010
Thomas Ruttig gives a short overview about previous NATO operations in Helmand and the strategic importance of the current one (in German)

Taliban strategist was seen as future negotiator
Financial Times online,16 February 2010
Thomas Ruttig is briefly quoted characterising arrested Mulla Baradar as ‘the day-to-day leader’ of the Taleban

NATO-Truppen stürmen Hochburg der Taliban (NATO troops assault Taleban stronghold)
Süddeutsche Zeitung (Munich), 15 February 2010
This report quotes Thomas Ruttig with doubts whether the Taleban can be permanently pushed out from Helmand (in German; not accessible on the web)

Afghan Drug Trade Affronted by Unlikely Partners: Iran and US 
Media Line, 15 February 2010
Martine van Bijlert is quoted on whether the Marjah operation will have a lot of effect on the drug trade: “It does not necessarily follow that if an area comes under increased government control, there will be less drug trade.”

Angekündigte Offensive in Afghanistan (An Offensive Foretold in Afghanistan)
Swiss Radio, 13 January 2010
Listen to a first analysis of Operation Moshtarak in Helmand by Thomas Ruttig (in German, see also the blog on the AAN website in English)

Die Wut der Afghanen (The Rage of the Afghans)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 10 February 2010
Thomas Ruttig and Farshid Hakimyar describe the measured reaction of the Afghan media and parliament about the killing of Afghan civilians in Kunduz last year about which a German parliamentary inquiry starts today.

Reintegrating the Taliban, Really
World Politics Review, 4 February 2010
Judah Grunstein’s blog on reintergration points towards three other blogs on the subject, including one by Martine van Bijlert (“examined some of the potential pitfalls of implementation in terms of ground-level foot soldiers”).

Karzai is geen vredestichter (Karzai is not a peacemaker)
Vrij Nederland (Netherlands weekly), 4 February 2010
Martine van Bijlert is quoted on how Karzai is not really in a position to make peace with the Taliban: his government lacks popular confidence and he is a party to the conflict, making it difficult for him to act independently.

Winning hearts, changing mindsets
The Broker Online, 3 February 2010.
Article on intervention as change management quotes Martine van Bijlert’s WRR book chapter “Imaginary Institions; State building in Afghanistan”

All quiet on the Afghan front
Atlantic Times, February 2010
The London conference wanted to turn a new page but instead kepps reading the same, never-ending story. An analysis by Thomas Ruttig (also in The German Times, The Asia Pacific Times and The African Times)

Kein echtes Gegengewicht (Afghan Parliament: No Real Counterweight)
Das Parlament, No 5-6/2010 (1 February 2010)
In her analysis of the decided delay of the parliamentiary elections, Britta Petersen quotes AAN’s Thomas Ruttig on the shortcomings of the manipulated and sidelined Afghan parliament


Government Pakistan Press Taliban US