Weighing a quicker exit from Afghanistan

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To the Editor:

An abrupt withdrawal of all American troops from Afghanistan would be a recipe for disaster. A zero option would jeopardize the gains made in Afghanistan over the past decade and allow Al Qaeda and the Taliban to reconstitute in parts of the country, from where they could plot against the United States and its allies.

While it is true that President Hamid Karzai has not been a reliable ally, President Obama should decide on the pace of troop withdrawal based on national security needs in South Asia rather than the Afghan president’s erratic behavior. After all, President Karzai’s term expires next year, and most Afghans back an enduring partnership with the United States.

The West abandoned Afghanistan prematurely after the Soviet withdrawal from the country and paid a heavy price for it. Let us not make that mistake again.

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About the Author

 

Ahmad K.
Majidyar
  • Ahmad K. Majidyar studies political and security affairs in South Asia and the Middle East, with a special focus on Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran. He also travels frequently to military bases across the United States to instruct senior U.S. Army and Marine officers about culture, religion, and domestic politics in Afghanistan, and about terrorist groups operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Before joining AEI in 2008, Mr. Majidyar worked as a media analyst with BBC Monitoring in Kabul, and served as an aid worker with the United Nations agency for refugees in Peshawar, Pakistan. He is fluent in Dari (Persian), Pashto, and Urdu.


    Follow Ahmad Majidyar on Twitter.
  • Phone: 202-862-5845
    Email: ahmad.majidyar@aei.org

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Join a diverse group of panelists — including sociologists, education experts, and students — for a discussion of how public policy and culture can help families lay a firmer foundation for their children’s educational success, and of how the effects of paternal involvement vary by socioeconomic background.

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Obamacare’s rocky start and uncertain future

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