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Afghanistan Faces Uncertain Future (I)

Afghanistan has witnessed two major events in the most recent weeks. One is the assumption of office by Ashraf Ghani as the next president of the country, succeeding Hamid Karzai. The second has been the signing of the two «back-to-back» security pacts between Afghanistan on the one hand and the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization [NATO] on the other.  Both developments are of historical importance in their own ways. Ghani’s presidency signifies a rare peaceful transition of power in the ebb and flow of Afghan history.  As for the second, Afghanistan has been invaded and occupied before in its tumultuous history dating back to Alexander the Great – the last famous occupation followed the British invasion in the 19 th century – but never before has that country had to agree to foreign military presence on its soil in such an open-ended fashion...

Melkulangara BHADRAKUMAR | 09.10.2014


 

US – Afghan Pact Remains Elusive

The sudden appearance of the US Senator John McCain in the Hindu Kush Mountains last weekend reminds the regional powers that there is more to Afghanistan's presidential election than meets the eye... McCain himself is not new to the frontline. He is a frequent visitor to Syria's neighboring countries to shore up the sagging regime change agenda against President Bashar Al-Assad. His missions to Ukraine aimed to ensure that the gains of the regime change in February did not get dissipated. His Afghan mission may seem on surface to be somewhat atypical... But in reality he was undertaking a typical McCain mission in Afghanistan – namely, to remove the road block that delays the signing of the US-Afghan security pact leading to the establishment of US military bases and advancing the ‘pivot’ to Asia...

Melkulangara BHADRAKUMAR | 09.07.2014


 

US Torpedoes Karzai’s Contacts with Taliban

...Washington doesn’t want any substantive «Afghan-led», «Afghan-controlled» peace talks except under its auspices. Most important, it does not want any serious dealings with the Taliban to take place before Karzai retired and a proxy has been put in power in Kabul who would duly put his signature on the dotted line on the US-Afghan Bilateral Security Agreement, formalizing the establishment of the US-NATO military bases in Afghanistan...

Melkulangara BHADRAKUMAR | 09.02.2014


 

Will the U.S. Find Its Way Out of the Dead End in Afghanistan?

...The tasks of ensuring security in the Northern Caucasus and in Russia's allies in Central Asia have made it a priority for Moscow to work toward counteracting the threats of extremism and international terrorism. Cooperation between the Russian Federation and the U.S. and NATO on Afghanistan remains perhaps the only area in relations between Moscow and the West where there have been no significant disagreements. This does not mean, however, that the West can continue to try the Kremlin's patience with its inability to find a way out of the military and political dead end which has resulted from the ineffective actions of the Western coalition for keeping peace in Afghanistan...

Nikolai BOBKIN | 04.02.2014


 

On the Drugs of «Peacemakers»

For the third year in a row, NATO-occupied Afghanistan has grown a record number of opium poppies... Large opium plantations have even re-appeared in northern Afghan provinces like Balkh and Faryab, which were publicly declared to have lost their status as opium producers. These Afghan provinces neighbour two CIS countries – Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan... For a number of years now, America has also been using drugs to continue its cold war against post-Soviet states through the destruction of their human potential. On the eve of the withdrawal of NATO occupation forces from Afghanistan, they are encouraging drug production by every means possible, and helping the war move into its hot phase by using the drug mafia’s armed groups that are concentrated in the southern underbelly of the former USSR, that they have provided with arms, and that are hiding behind Islamist slogans...

Nikolai MALISHEVSKI | 24.01.2014


 

Afghanistan in the Strategic Plans of Iran

...The inevitability of an escalation of the situation in the country after the Americans leave frightens everyone, but it seems that Tehran considers it to be the lesser of two evils. For the Iranians it is more important not to allow the continued long-term American occupation of Afghanistan up to the year 2024, as provided for in the draft agreement which so far Karzai does not want to sign...

Nikolai BOBKIN | 12.12.2013


 

The Subtext of the Stalled Afghan-US Treaty: Will the US Trade Karzai for the Taliban?

2013 is almost over and the US has still not managed to get NATO-garrisoned Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai to sign the Pentagon’s bilateral security agreement. The agreement is vital strategic importance for the US and NATO in respect to having a position amidst the main players in Eurasia. The United States has set December 2014 as its so-called military withdrawal date from NATO-manned Central Asian country. Despite the claims of the US, the Pentagon wants to keep a figure of 20,000 or more military personnel in Afghanistan, retain at least nine bases, and to use Afghan airspace and territory for Pentagon operations in Central Asia and beyond...

Mahdi Darius NAZEMROAYA | 07.12.2013


 

US to Stay in Afghanistan after 2014

On November 24 Afghan elders at a grand assembly in Kabul called for a security deal with the US to be signed this year... The document outlines a broad, long term relationship with Afghanistan that commits the United States to sustaining the Afghan security forces for years to come, and likely deploying thousands of American troops in the country to carry out that training and the limited counter-terrorism role... The draft also allows unfettered overflight rights of US military aircraft... Speaking at the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) held late September in Sochi Russian President Putin said the planned 2014 ISAF withdrawal from Afghanistan could pose a major threat to its neighbors...

Andrei AKULOV | 26.11.2013


 

Afghanistan and its Future (III)

Washington does not exclude that the repetition of Syria scenario caused by NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan may result in strategic advantage to meet its interests. Controlled chaos is a tried and true method. A would-be war in Afghanistan will enable the Americans to control the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in China, maintain instability in the vicinity of Iranian borders and exacerbate the relations between India and Pakistan. Finally, the United States will maintain a springboard to exert pressure on Central Asia. Since 2014 Afghanistan is to become a major security problem for Russia...

Nikolai BOBKIN | 09.10.2013


 

Afghanistan and its Future (II)

The return of Taliban to Kabul is a matter of special concern for Russia and the neighboring CIS (the Community of Independent Nations) states. President Karzai believes Afghanistan is a sovereign country and has a right to determine its own fate, including the involvement of Taliban into the political process. He is self-assured and not concerned a bit about the fact that with ISAF gone the Taliban can come back to the political scene and share power. Those who took the reins after the Soviet forces withdrawal let the movement turn Afghanistan into the springboard of international terrorism. They were self-assured too... Actually the incumbent Afghan government is siding with the United States and NATO getting the country embroiled into the mess with consequences hard to predict...

Nikolai BOBKIN | 08.10.2013




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OUR COLUMNIST
    Nikolai BOBKIN

Iran: Coming out in the Open to Join First Line of Battle against Islamic State

...Iran realizes that Iraq turns into a springboard for launching an Islamic State aggression against Iran so it makes no secret of its involvement there anymore. The supreme leader of Iran Ali Khamenei says the activities of the US and its allies lead to split among Muslims instead of eradicating terrorism. Tehran believes that the only way to counter the threat is to make Iraqi Shiites join the fight against terrorists. The unparalleled in scale pilgrimage of Iraqi and Iranian believers to the Shia holy city of Kerbela is a telling example of Shiites’ unity...

21.12.2014
 
 
 
 
 
 
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