Talking the Pentagon’s Business Development Plan

by Joshua Foust on 1/14/2011

Last week, Business Week ran a profile of Paul Brinkley, a Deputy Undersecretary of Defense who leads the DOD’s Task Force for Business & Stability Operations. It’s kind of a bizarre task force, and thus kind of a bizarre profile—resting on the assumption that the one thing Herat is missing is an IBM factory, for example—but the idea is certainly intriguing. I’m a bit skeptical that the DOD needs to be doing this, but I also suspect it is a function of the military having all the money and logistics—like all the time, so they just do it so it can get done.

Anyway, so last night I visited the Alyona Show over at the RT studios in Washington, DC, to chat about it.

We also discussed this excellent post by Michiel Hofman, about how aid has become militarized in Afghanistan. You should read that as well.

There’s a lot going on with both angles of the war presented here—a lot people do not normally talk about. I finally have some time and headspace to start thinking about them in a more systemic fashion; expect more thoughts on what this means, and how we can make it better, in the future.


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This post was written by...

– author of 1849 posts on Registan.net.

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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