Taliban

Afghan Taliban militants and residents stand on an armored vehicle of the Afghan National Army as they celebrate a ceasefire in Maiwand district of Kandahar province on June 17, 2018. (Javed Tanveer/AFP/Getty Images)

How the Taliban Won

On the podcast: Former Pakistani Ambassador Husain Haqqani on America’s endgame in Afghanistan.

Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, the head of the the Taliban's political office,  prays following peace talks at the President Hotel in Moscow on Feb. 6. (Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Don’t Trust the Taliban’s Promises

U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan would leave a power vacuum filled by terrorists.

U.S. Marines patrol on April 1, 2009 through Now Zad in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

Why America Lost in Afghanistan

Successive U.S. administrations failed to heed the lessons of a forgotten counterinsurgency success story from Vietnam.

A Taliban representative attends international talks on Afghanistan in Moscow on Nov. 9, 2018. (Yuri Kodobnov/AFP/Getty Images)

It’s Time to Trust the Taliban

Afghanistan’s jihadi insurgents are ready to give America what it wants: defeat without humiliation.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and representatives of both the Afghan government and the Taliban pose for a photo prior to international talks on Afghanistan in Moscow on Nov. 9, 2018. (Yuri Kadobnov/AFP/Getty Images)

As U.S. Mulls Withdrawal From Afghanistan, Russia Wants Back in

By holding its own peace talks, Moscow is laying the groundwork to play kingmaker.

Former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan and Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad gives a press conference at Serena Hotel in Kabul on Oct. 14, 2009. (Massoud Hossaini/AFP/Getty Images)

Will Zalmay Khalilzad Be Known as the Man Who Lost Afghanistan?

The lifelong booster of American power is caught between Trump’s withdrawal plans and the Taliban threat.

Chinese soldiers ride on armored missile carriers as they pass in front of Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City during a military parade on Sept. 3, 2015, in Beijing. (Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

Goodbye War on Terror, Hello China and Russia

Five Reads: The best Foreign Policy stories of 2018 on defense and security.

A U.S. flag flies at a checkpoint in the Deh Bala district in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, on July 8. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP/Getty Images)

Trump Leaves Behind Mess for Afghans to Clean Up

Reports of the withdrawal of U.S. troops took Afghans by surprise. And it gives the Taliban exactly what they want.

Afghan security forces personnel are seen at the site of a car bomb attack in Kabul on May 31, 2017. (Shah Marai/AFP/Getty Images)

In Afghanistan, a 17-Year Stalemate

America’s top general admits the war is at an impasse.

Afghan women wait in line to vote at a polling center for the country’s legislative election in Herat province on Oct. 20. (Hoshang Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images)

Afghanistan’s Strongman Democracy

Flawed and messy as it was, the vote was still good for democracy.

Kandahar Police Chief Abdul Raziq poses during a graduation ceremony at a police training center in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, on Feb. 19, 2017. (Jawed Tanveer/AFP/Getty Images)

The Taliban Just Won a Key Battle for Afghanistan’s Future

The killing of a strongman police chief creates a dangerous power vacuum.

People walk near destroyed houses after a Taliban attack in Ghazni, Afghanistan on Aug. 16. (Zakeria Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images)

Talking to the Taliban

On the podcast: American journalist Ashley Jackson wanted to learn more about Taliban leaders. So she donned a burqa and knocked on their doors.

The scene on the main road of Nawa-i-Barakzai district center in Helmand province, Afghanistan, on Aug. 2. The Taliban held the area from October 2016 to July 2017.

The Taliban’s Fight for Hearts and Minds

The militants’ new strategy is to out-govern the U.S.-backed administration in Kabul—and it’s working.

Afghan residents walk near destroyed houses after a Taliban attack in Ghazni on Aug. 16. (Zakeria Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images)

One Year On, Little to Show for Trump’s Afghanistan Strategy

The Pentagon says the United States is winning the war, but after 17 years, there’s still no end in sight.

Children working as street hawkers at a bazaar in western Kabul say their biggest fears are “terrorist attacks”
where they work and kidnappings. (Preethi Nallu/Samuel Hall)

Children Are Paying the Price for Afghanistan’s Endless War

As schools become targets, young Afghans are living and working on the streets — and the government isn’t doing much to protect them.

Kandahar Air Field on Sep. 9, 2017. (Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images)

False Dawn in Afghanistan?

A temporary Taliban truce, despite the opportunity it presents, doesn’t mean peace is about to break out anytime soon.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis walks with Gen. John Nicholson at the Resolute Support Mission headquarters on an unannounced visit to Kabul on March 13, 2018.
THOMAS WATKINS/AFP/Getty Images

Security Brief: Russia Providing Arms to Taliban; China’s Global Kidnapping Campaign

"We've had weapons brought to this headquarters and given to us by Afghan leaders and [they] said, this was given by the Russians to the Taliban."

A man waves a Pakistani flag at the Wagah border crossing with India on March 11, 2004. (Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Is Trump Ready to Dump Pakistan?

The White House is talking tough, but previous U.S. presidents never managed to persuade Islamabad to fight Afghan militants.

A damaged circuitboard. (Flickr)

Learning to Fight When Screens Go Dark

If we woke up tomorrow and found that none of our laptops, iPhones, iPads, or personal assistants worked, what would we do?

Various members of the Afghan armed forces unload a casualty from an ambulance at the Tirinkot airbase in Uruzgan province on May 4.

The Walking Dead

As U.S. troops draw down, the Afghan military struggles to provide care for its countless wounded soldiers — on the battlefield and at home.

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