by Rodric Braithwaite
Oxford University Press, 417 pp., $29.95
by Artemy M. Kalinovsky
Harvard University Press, 304 pp., $27.95
by Edward Girardet
Chelsea Green, 417 pp., $27.95
by Jonathan Steele
Counterpoint, 437 pp., $26.00
by Peter Tomsen
PublicAffairs, 849 pp., $39.99
by Riaz Mohammad Khan
Woodrow Wilson Center Press/ Johns Hopkins University Press, 385 pp., $34.95
Report on Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan
US Department of Defense
October 2011, 138 pp., available at www.defense.gov
edited by Antonio Giustozzi
Columbia University Press, 318 pp., $40.00
An Enemy We Created: The Myth of the Taliban/Al Qaeda Merger in Afghanistan, 1970–2010
by Alex Strick van Linschoten and Felix Kuehn
Oxford University Press (to be published in September 2012)
The United States and its allies today find themselves in a position in Afghanistan similar to that of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s, after Mikhail Gorbachev decided on military withdrawal by a fixed deadline. They are in a race against the clock to build up a regime and army that will survive their withdrawal, while either seeking a peace agreement with the leaders of the insurgent forces or splitting off their more moderate, pragmatic, and mercenary elements and making an agreement with them. The Soviets succeeded at least partially in some of these objectives, while failing utterly to achieve a peace settlement. To date, that is just about true of the West as well.
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Afghanistan & Money March 8, 2012