The Rolling Stone, 22 June 2010 THE Rolling Stone story that cost General Stanley McChrystal his Afghan job.
The Captain’s Journal, 21 June 2010 Hershel Smith’s interesting blog takes on the assumption that the Sons of Iraq option can be copied in Afghanistan (see our discussion of LDI) and looks at why Helmand ‘went wrong’ and on what he calls a ‘horrible deal’ with Mulla Salam in Musa Qala.
New York Times, 19 June 2010. The US and the UK supporting an effort to establish local councils in 100 districts. The revival of ASOP after all.
McClatchy, 18 June 2010 “On behalf of the city of Kabul and the Kabul police, if you have paid a bribe or ‘tip’ to someone in the past, I apologize,” the officer says in Dari to the disbelieving driver. “Please take 100 Afghanis.”
IWPR, 17 June 2010 Afghan analysts and MPs seem to agree that not only the Taleban but also ISAF forces use Afghan civilians as ‘human shields’. Says one analyst: “If the foreigners want to reduce this hatred, they should […] leave the cities, and stop moving through crowded civilian areas.”
Washington Post, 15 June 2010 Although we not necessarily agree with everything author Richard Cohen says, he says it very well (and funny). And we also have additionally confusing news for Gregor Samsa: Vietnam was called Iraq before Afghanistan. (Please read in combination with Robert D. Kaplan, ‘Man Versus Afghanistan’, see below)
Le Monde diplomatique (German edition), June 2010 An excellent account of Kandahar’s complex situation, full version apparently only available in German, with a shorter English version on the author’s website www.stephengrey.com.
Washington Post, 10 May 2010 A report on a much-trumpeted adoption of a tribal (Shinwari) militia by the US Special Forces but then gone sour.
Globe and Mail, 10 April 2010 Graeme Smith on how Canada ignored indications that Kandahar’s former governor Assadullah Khaled was running private prisons and was involved in torture, and their relationship with the murky Brigade 888 (which followed Assadullah when he left).
The Atlantic magazine, April 2010 Stan The Man will pull it all off, with BlackOps on ‘an industrial scale’, against the odds of history, fate, tradition and liberal debate – that, at least, is what Robert Kaplan says.
Guardian, 31 March 2010 A report on the first Afghan indie rock band – you can listen to a few songs of them on MySpace or Youtube
World Affairs, March/April 2010 Jonathan Steele looks back on his reporting during Soviet rule in Afghanistan and considers the parallels with the current situation.