India shouldn’t lose the Afghan plot

Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah casts vote in presidential election, Kabul, September 28, 2019 India is probably the only country to hail the “successful conduct of Presidential elections” in Afghanistan on September 28. Everyone else is holding breath. Curiously, the unusually muted campaign highlighted that candidates themselves seemed uninterested in spending money on an election …

Beware of blowback from Afghan policies

The site of a suicide attack by Taliban in Parwan province, Sept. 17, 2019, targetting a campaign rally by President Ghani, killing over 20 people. Ghani escaped unharmed.  During an exclusive interview with the Associated Press this week, the former Afghan president Hamid Karzai severely questioned the rationale behind the presidential election which is due to …

Bolton’s exit impacts US foreign policy. This is how

Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) received US National Security Advisor John Bolton (R), Moscow, Oct. 23, 2018 At a press briefing Tuesday afternoon in Washington, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cautioned against any rushed estimation that the exit of National Security Advisor John Bolton signalled a seismic shift in the Trump administration’s foreign policy.  …

US, Pakistan move in tandem to end Afghan war

President Donald Trump (R) speaks during a meeting with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Washington, July 22, 2019 The US State Department chose Friday to announce the decision to approve a $125 million aid package providing technical support to Pakistan’s fleet of F-16 fighter aircraft. Ironically, the news reached Delhi on the 20th anniversary of …

Trump’s volte-face on Pakistan is a moment of truth for India

A Taliban delegation led by Abdul Ghani Baradar (centre) visited China recently, according to Beijing. The announcement in Washington on Wednesday regarding Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’ visit to the United States cannot but be noted as a watershed event in regional politics.  At its most obvious level, the announcement coincides with the news coming out …

Delhi must show realism on Taliban reconciliation and peace talks

(A procession escorting the body of Staff Sgt. Christopher Slutman arrives to a funeral home in the Bronx borough of New York, April 22, 2019.) The trilateral meeting of the United States, Russia and China at the level of special representatives in Moscow on April 25 signifies that the Afghan peace talks will be shifting …

Who’s afraid of Afghan peace talks – Kabul and Delhi?

(A transfer case containing the remains of Staff Sgt. Christopher Slutman at Dover Air Force Base, Del. who was among 3 American soldiers killed near Bagram base, Afghanistan on April 8, 2019)  Henry Kissinger wouldn’t have approved the way Zalmay Khalilzad, US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, handles the Afghan peace talks. Even if Tweeter …