Registan’s Afghanistan News & Analysis Archive

Since the terrorist attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC in 2001, significant international effort has been poured into creating a stable and secure Afghanistan. Much of the public and media attention has been focused on combat operations, the relationship between security in Pakistan and security in Afghanistan, and corruption in Afghanistan’s government. While these are important issues, critical questions about what the future holds for Afghanistan and its neighbors linger, especially with the looming deadline for ISAF to turn over responsibility for security to the government of Afghanistan.

Registan.net frequently features news and analysis on Afghanistan, with special emphasis on ISAF’s efforts to stabilize the country and how the war in Afghanistan shapes the overall South and Central Asia policies of the United States. Several of our contributors have worked for government, business, and development clients providing analytic support on culture, society, geography, and security in Afghanistan. Coupled with our strong expertise and experience in Central Asia, Registan is uniquely poised to helping organizations navigate the challenges and identify the opportunities that will rise in Afghanistan and South Asia in decade to come.

Let Registan puts its Afghanistan expertise and experience to work with research, analysis, and training services tailored to your individual needs. For more information on how we can help you and your organization better understand Afghanistan and the other countries of South Asia, visit our services page.

Missed Opportunities Along the Silk Road: China and Russia Neglected

by Kendrick Kuo
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A prediction: in 2014-2015, the US media will begin churning out op-eds about the failures of US plans to stabilize Afghanistan after military withdrawal. A good number will acknowledge, in passing, the New Silk Road (NSR) as one of many small failures, but not give full consideration to the opportunity the NSR represented and hence [...]

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Why Central Asia Matters

by Nathan Barrick

The “Great Game” is the term commonly used to describe the competition by the great 19th Century Empires for influence and control of Central Asia, especially Afghanistan.  There are many observers who would prefer to leave the “Great Game” in the annals of 19th Century history and interpret current events in Central Asia and Afghanistan [...]

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China’s Geopolitical Fallout Not a Win

by Kendrick Kuo
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Robert Kaplan, a contemporary popularizer of geopolitical thinking, has a new article on RealClearWorld titled “China’s Geopolitical Fallout,” wherein he maps out the potential consequences of a Chinese economic slowdown leading to political and social crisis. The winners in Kaplan’s mind are “the United States and its allies — both de facto like India and [...]

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Readjusting in Afghanistan

by Alec Metz

Three big Afghan-related news items came out of not Afghanistan today: Pakistan’s official view of the U.S. raid that killed Bin Laden, the U.S.’s reconsideration of its withdrawal timelines and endstate, and the closure (probably temporarily) of the Taliban office in Qatar. All three are strong indicators of serious problems Afghanistan will face post-2014. The [...]

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The Three Evils of Narco-Policy in Central Asia

by Reid Standish
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On July 3, the head of the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (RSKN), Viktor Ivanov announced plans to create an anti-drug operations center through the auspices of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). The proposed plan to fight drug trafficking in Afghanistan and Central Asia called for the establishment of national headquarters in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan [...]

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Aynak Copper Mine: Case Study of Sino-Afghan Dreams, Interrupted

by Kendrick Kuo
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For China watchers peering westward, there is a tangible feeling in the air that Chinese relations with Central Asia and the Middle East is the way of the future. I am a participant in conjuring up such dreams. But is it that simple? The cards are in Beijing’s favor: massive monetary reserves, the desire to [...]

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How do Post-2014 Spillover Fears and Russian Foreign Policy Goals Align?

by Reid Standish
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“Thousands of terrorists and fundamentalists will seek refuge in Afghanistan as well as the region around the country,” said Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on a visit to India back in October 2012. “It [Afghanistan] may change the situation drastically around the region and for countries like Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Central Asia.” In response [...]

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“Help Me Help You”: Sino-U.S. Cooperation in Taliban Negotiations

by Kendrick Kuo
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As negotiations with the Taliban stall and sputter, headlines have not neglected the role of China in post-2014 considerations. If reconciliation negotiations continue, look for continued reference to China. Yet expect these references to be head nods treating China tangentially–acknowledging the current status, but not constructively building the pressure for U.S. negotiators to aggressively reach [...]

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Why does Central Asia Still Matter? Because It Matters to China.

by Noah Tucker
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This is a guest post by Kendrick Kuo, a grad student at Johns Hopkins and China specialist with a wealth of field experience in China and the Middle East. You can check out more of his work at his own blog, http://asiancrescent.com. Chinese foreign policy toward Central Asia and the Muslim world at large remains [...]

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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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