Quote of the Day

by Joshua Foust on 12/20/2008

The little shura is discussing the mission that brought us here. Establishing a voter registration site for the town. A discussion has ensued because the town elders decided that the site should be 500 meters to the south in an abandoned building, which just happens to be across a line.

The line is the delineation between two tribes, the school happens to be in a “neutral” area. Damn, they didn’t tell me about this one. A fledgling democracy is like sausage, everybody likes it but nobody wants to see how it made. I’m seeing how it’s made, actually I’m now neck deep in making it.

—The quite excellent Afghanistan Shrugged, on the challenges of having trained infantry do state-building. The blogger is in an Embedded Training Team, or ETT—small units that spend extended periods of time outside the wire with locals. I suspect they will ultimately be the key to winning the war, even if right now they are relatively marginalized in the Army.


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This post was written by...

– author of 1848 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Joshua Foust is a Fellow at the American Security Project and the author of Afghanistan Journal: Selections from Registan.net. His research focuses primarily on Central and South Asia. Joshua is a correspondent for The Atlantic and a columnist for PBS Need to Know. Joshua appears regularly on the BBC World News, Aljazeera, and international public radio. Joshua's writing has appeared in the Columbia Journalism Review, Foreign Policy’s AfPak Channel, the New York Times, Reuters, and the Christian Science Monitor. Follow him on twitter: @joshuafoust

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