Latest Articles about South Asia

Taliban Clashes With U.s. Troops Becoming More Frequent

As summer approaches in Afghanistan and the peak fighting season lies ahead, the 20,000-strong U.S. military is making increasing contact with the enemy. But the enemy is no longer limited to pockets of suspected al-Qaeda fugitives and their Taliban allies in the mountains near the... MORE

Afghan Warlords Reluctant To Disarm

President Hamid Karzai's Kabul government - strongly backed by U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad - is struggling to smooth the road to successful general elections this September. There appears to be two obstacles. One is whittling the power of warlords so that they cannot influence the... MORE

Taliban Intensify Activity In Pashtun Provinces

Recent news reports from Afghanistan indicate that the Taliban are very active this spring. The Kabul government says that the Taliban goal is to disrupt the upcoming elections in September. Taliban resurgence is largely evident in the Pashtun-dominated provinces of southern and eastern Afghanistan. But... MORE

Wiley Tribesman Thwart U.s. Hunt For Al-qaeda

The vaunted "Mountain Storm" U.S. spring offensive on the Afghan border with Pakistan and the supporting Pakistani action against tribes believed to be harboring Al-Qaeda on its side of the border in Waziristan has petered out. From "a hammer and anvil" strategy that would have... MORE

Tactics Of Counter Narcotics In Afghanistan Examined

The 2004 rise in opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan may be as high as 50 percent, according to USDA Deputy Secretary Jim Moseley, who traveled to Afghanistan in April to review its agricultural development. That would be a record crop. The United Nations has estimated... MORE

Afghanistan: Choosing Among The Warlords

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar , the Afghan mujahideen warlord that the West most likes to hate, may finally have met his Waterloo - not on the field of battle but in a possible factional rebellion by followers of his own Hisb-e-Islami or Islamic Party. In a startling... MORE

A Shift In U.S. Strategy In Afghanistan? (part II)

The apparent shift in U.S. Afghan policy away from the Northern Alliance and toward the Pashtun-dominated south (see yesterday's EDM) appears to be driven by two factors: internal and external. Internally, the Pashtuns, although a minority of about 40 percent of the population, have held... MORE

A Shift In U.s. Strategy In Afghanistan? (part I)

On April 8, 2004, U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice in her testimony before the commission on the 9-11 attacks in the United States, spoke of "a new strategic approach to Afghanistan." She went on to say that "instead of the intense focus on the... MORE

Afghans Get Financial But Few Security Commitments

The Berlin donor's conference on Afghanistan resulted in good news in the form of commitments of US$8.2 billion in aid pledges over the next three years. But the confidence resulting from the Berlin commitments could be undercut by the reluctance of donors - especially but... MORE