The government's impotence and the staggering insecurity in Afghanistan have left officials with much to gain from partnering with insurgents. I spoke with Crisis Group's Senior Analyst for Afghanistan about the insurgent threat.
U.S. and Afghan intelligence have illustrated their desperation by spreading fabrications about Omar's death, hoping to provoke him to react with haste and angrily issue denials via statements or audio recordings that could give up his position.
That "our man in Kabul" heads a criminal state is anything but breaking news, yet what remains a mystery is America's continual support for the brothers Karzai as the U.S. neglects promoting Afghans whose power isn't derived from drugs, guns and money.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced that local security forces will take over control in the provinces of Bamiyan, Panjshir, and much of Kabul, from the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) beginning in July.
As the war in Afghanistan drags into its tenth year, the United States doesn't need more martyrs. It does need to do a much better job of winning regional support for its mission. Sending innocent prisoners home would be a good start.
It was the religious elders of the Reis Shura Ulema in Afghanistan who initially apprised me of the practice of Bacha Bazi, where young boys are made to dance and then exploited sexually by the police.
Contrary to mass assumption, the U.S. goal is not to achieve stability in Afghanistan as much as it is to maintain control -- control via a client regime that can best serve Western economic and security concerns.