Tag Archives: Afghanistan

Afghanistan's second election: not exactly democratic consolidation

Perhaps it’s because we like to reinforce our own prejudices with positive reaffirmations or perhaps it’s because the media does not know how to tell a complex story simply, but the weekend’s presidential election in Afghanistan was not the democratic triumph we have been led to believe. Yes, they were elections, but this was somewhat […]

no peace with honour in Afghanistan

When a war does not have a defined objective that can be equated with victory, it is easy to fudge its definition of defeat. This is the case in Afghanistan. The US’ “peace with honor” in Vietnam was, by any measure, a defeat. The Vietnamese won their unified state and the US won nothing. In […]

Terrorism hotspots: they're not in Afghanistan, or the West

If you had to guess the number one spot for terrorism worldwide, what would you guess? Afghanistan? According to a new document from the defence and security intelligence and analysis group IHS Janes, first prize for terrorist attacks belongs to Syria. Putting aside the pedantic untidiness of who the terrorists actually were, Syria certainly suffered […]

My enemy's enemy is my friend: US-Pakistani relations looking fragile

It is reasonably widely accepted that Osama bin Laden was able to stay in the Pakistan town of Abbottabad because he had the protection of Pakistan’s military, in particular its powerful Inter Services Intelligence organisation. It would have been all but impossible for bin Laden to have stayed in one place in Pakistan without the […]

Australia takes Number 1 in world development rankings

For every Australian tired of bad news – disasters, political disputes and public people behaving badly – here is some good news. While nobody was noticing, late last year Australia pipped Norway to achieve the highest standard of living in the world. Standards of living used to be equated with national wealth divided by the […]

Jim Molan’s delusions

You wouldn’t expect a surgeon to recommend Chinese medicine to his patients. His advice usually involves a scalpel and some nasty cutting. Similarly, it would be surprising for military men to advocate political solutions to global conflicts. It’s not their area of professional expertise. By default they lead with their strongest suit – organised violence […]