Archive of Sunny in Kabul

Happily married, cynic, and I long to drink the Kool-Aid. Two tours in Iraq, once as an Infantry officer, once as a Civil Affairs officer supporting a PRT. Now it's civilian development work in Afghanistan since 2009. I want to believe, it's just that the lies are so laughable.

Sunny in has written 15 articles at Registan.


There is No Wild Blue Yonder for the AAF

by Sunny in Kabul

It’s been a while since I’ve posted here, but I will always have a warm place in my wonky heart for Registan. So here’s the first of a repost or two that’ll be inbound from Sunny in Kabul, my usual blogging home on the web. The following is a slightly edited version of what I [...]

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Guest Blog at AAN: CNAS and a Dangerous Case for Intervention

by Sunny in Kabul

One of the more fun things I get to do as a would-be writer and pseudo-analyst focusing on Afghanistan is guest blog for the Afghanistan Analysts Network. Collectively they’re a group of people with a deep, direct knowledge of events in Afghanistan, and I have nothing but the utmost respect for their work. The fact that they [...]

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Jonah Blank’s Inimitable Guide to Pashtuns

by Sunny in Kabul

If your daily commute involves a litter or some other people-powered conveyance, put Jonah Blank‘s “How to Negotiate Like a Pashtun” on your “must read” list. His “Field Guide to Dealing with the Taliban” helps unravel the complexities of those inscrutable denizens of Pashtunistan as only a RAND senior political scientist can, and finally puts [...]

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Peter Bergen Goes All Miracle Max, Only Gets It Mostly Wrong on Afghanistan

by Sunny in Kabul

Per a nice blurb in Foreign Policy that, admittedly, was in reference to the Tumblr, the writer said that I spend a lot of time countering Peter Bergen‘s assertion in March of 2013 that things are actually going pretty well in Afghanistan. Since I was on vacation at the time, and stuff was shiny, I’ve been remiss [...]

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Enough Already: Max Boot Wants US to Meddle in Afghan Elections

by Sunny in Kabul

Someday this will be a different world. A world where our differences unite, not divide. A world where borders are crossed by invitation, not intervention. In other words, a world that Max Boot would not understand. In his latest Afghan-centric interventiongasm, the Lord of the ISAF Latte is once again advocating for foreign intervention in [...]

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Kabuli Balloons and Kandahari Bicycles: One Afghan’s Perspective on Foreign Aid

by Sunny in Kabul

You may have heard that, last weekend, an American artist and Afghan volunteers handed out 10,000 pink balloons in Kabul. His “art” inspired a range of emotions, from those who thought this was a wonderful way to promote peace, to those that thought the whole thing was a big waste of time. In the “waste [...]

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ISAF Came to Drop Bombs: Weapons Releases Up 32%

by Sunny in Kabul

Who knew “Fighting Joe” Dunford and the ISAF Cutting Crew were such House of Pain fans? Since some of you may not be fully familiar with the lyrical genius of their hit “Jump Around,” the section in question: Word to your moms I came to drop bombs I got more rhymes than the Bible’s got Psalms [...]

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ISAF Explains Security Using Schools and Cellphones…and It’s Adorable

by Sunny in Kabul

ISAF‘s stopped releasing it’s monthly numbers, so for the duration of Operation Ready or Not we’re going to be stuck with whatever press releases they deign to unleash upon us huddled masses. Which is what we had here last week. It was yet another plethora of misguided metrics and an apparent misunderstanding of what’s really [...]

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Bing West Writes for the NRO on Afghanistan

by Sunny in Kabul

The National Review Online is widely regarded as a paragon of rational thought and well-reasoned argument. They do not deign to dabble in the petty squabblings reserved for lesser publications like the Daily Caller, but regularly take a moral high ground. Such moral high ground can, at times, be construed as being terribly racist-y, but [...]

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More Fun with ISAF’s Numbers: I Blog for the AAN

by Sunny in Kabul

One of the coolest things I’ve gotten to do in writing about Afghanistan is guest blogging over at the Afghan Analysts Network. It’s run by some of the smartest people around when it comes to Afghanistan, and it’s a no-kidding privilege to be able to write for them on occasion.Before we learned yesterday that ISAF [...]

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