Tag Archives: Central Asia

US Policy in Iraq: Countering ISIS, Formal Policy Brief

While Nouri al-Maliki (a Shia) reels from being over-run by ISIS, its worth noting how he and The White House can formulate a coherent policy to bring Iraq back from the brink. Absent renewed ‘boots on the ground’, the only … Continue reading

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The New Russian Imperial Presidency

Why have the very best minds in American foreign policy chosen Russia as their primary study?  It has to do with finding a specific culture that was forced to accommodate modernity.  Given its vast geography, its multiple languages and its … Continue reading

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Pakistan: Incompetent & Duplicitous Ally

With the death of Osama bin Laden the U.S. can now begin to assess its partner in the ‘Long War’.  Any brief cogent view of Pakistan will reveal a deeply troubling political arena fit for only the most competent statesman. … Continue reading

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General David Petraeus Ph.D., Icon Of Counterinsurgency & The Ideals Of Mao Tse-tung & Sun Tzu

About fifteen years ago Nien Cheng (author of ‘Life & Death In Shanghai’) gave the commencement address at Marist College in New York.  I was unaware of her life and her relation to Mao Tse-tung, she was best friends with … Continue reading

Posted in Central Asia, China, Sun Tzu, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

The Soft Underbelly Of The Afghan War

Everyone remembers Eisenhower’s admonition to Kennedy that ‘he ought to be careful of the industrial military complex.’  Most misunderstood this reply indicative of ideological bias, but a good reading of how an industrial command economy works gives credence to much … Continue reading

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What Informes Obama’s Foreign Policy Strategy? A Look At The Dangers Of Idealist Rulers

Its not difficult to understand what informs the current Obama administration as it seeks to discover the ‘field of intelligibility’ in foreign affairs.  Obama see’s statecraft as a zero sum game.  He’s viewing the craft of power relations in a … Continue reading

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Pakistani Intelligence Services, Osama bin Ladin & The Nemesis Of History

The recent release of the AfPak papers (summer 2010) reveals what many already knew:  ISI (Pakistani Directorate of Inter-Services Intelligence) is giving tactical and material support to the Taliban.  First, some definitions:  ISI is the CIA for Pakistan, the Taliban … Continue reading

Posted in Frontier, International Relations, Islam, Politics, Terrorism, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The New Wiseman: Informed Critics Of Afpak Strategy

Decades ago Washington insiders always spoke reverently about the need for any President to have a ‘wise man’ continuously informing and constraining the President’s policy options:  Roosevelt had Hopkins, Truman had Acheson, Kennedy had Macmillian.  Today’s President either arrives into … Continue reading

Posted in International Relations, Islam, Near East, Politics, Reagan, Terrorism, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Arnold Toynbee: Tribal, Communal, Ethnic Conflicts; Their Origin and Future Trajectory

Arnold Toynbee’s 12 volume study of the genesis, growth and breakdown of dozens of Civilizations is back in vogue with the demise of Marxism and the robust acclaim given to market based solutions in political economies across the world. He … Continue reading

Posted in Arnold Toynbee, Benny Avni, China, Conservatism, International Relations, Islam, Israel, Middle East Peace, Near East, Perils Of Specialization, Politics, Terrorism | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment