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This week on Rational Security, the panel discusses Trump, Iran, and Russian trolls.

Rational Security on The E.R.: The “Decertified” Edition

Trump deems Iran in violation of the “worst deal ever.”

Afghan army trainees inside a helicopter simulator at a military base in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Oct. 21, 2009. (Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

‘Ghost Soldiers’: Too Many U.S.-Trained Afghans Are Going AWOL

Some 13 percent of Afghan military personnel training in the United States last year went AWOL.

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces stand guard next to a bridge in Manbij, northern Syria, on June 23, 2016. (Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty Images)

Syrian Reconstruction Spells Juicy Contracts for Russian, Iranian Firms

Bombed-out cities meant death and destruction. Now they promise billions of dollars — for new construction.

Chongqing Communist Party Secretary Chen Miner attends the 19th Party Congress in Beijing on Oct. 19. (Lintao Zhang/Getty Images)

Xi Jinping Has Quietly Chosen His Own Successor

Meet Chen Miner, the man who has been getting groomed to run China — without anyone in the West seeming to notice.

The Afghan army conducts a controlled explosion during a military exercise on the outskirts of Kabul on April 30, 2014. (Shah Marai/AFP/Getty Images)

Pentagon Report: IED Casualties Surge in Afghanistan

Roadside bomb attacks are falling overall, except in Afghanistan.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifies before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Oct. 18. (Jason Connolly/AFP/Getty Images)

Jeff Sessions Just Confessed His Negligence on Russia

The attorney general is aware of the threat Moscow poses to American elections — he just hasn’t done anything about it.

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly speaks during a White House briefing Oct. 19 in Washington, D.C. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

This Whole Gold Star Mess

Trump does not appear to understand military service

U.S. service members walk off a helicopter on the runway at Camp Bost on Sept. 11 in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. (Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images)

My time in the rotation helps show why our approach in Afghanistan is doomed

The U.S. military’s way of operating in Afghanistan is a recipe for failure.

A Bangor, ME police department dog. (Courtesy Bangor, Maine, police department)

Today’s briefing

A Bangor police dog takes the podium.

Women walk through Kabul in 1972. (Via Amnesty International UK)

How the Muslim World Lost the Freedom to Choose

A brave new book describes how Pakistan unraveled — and provides a blueprint for understanding declining pluralism across the Middle East.

Iranians show ink-stained fingers after casting their ballots on May 19. (Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images)

Iran’s Not a Totally Fake Democracy, Study Says

A new survey shows a country with a constrained but active body politic, contrary to plenty of D.C. conventional wisdom.

The scene of an exploded truck bomb in the Somali capital of Mogadishu on Oct. 14. (Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images)

Can Somalia Ever Win Against al-Shabab?

From the ashes of the country’s deadliest terrorist attack, lasting peace seems a long way off.

Headstones are seen at Arlington Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia on Sept. 21. (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images)

Waiting for that official knock on the door: A military spouse’s thoughts

The "sacred trust" between military families and the commander in chief provides secure ground

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Global Thinkers 2015 Issue Cover