Afghanistan: The Politics of Escalation vs. the Politics of Withdrawal

If you’re having trouble keeping the Afghanistan war debate straight, I can’t recommend highly enough Tony Corn’s article in Small Wars Journal (.pdf), titled, “Toward a Kilcullen-Biden Plan? Bounding Counterinsurgency in Afghanistan.” Corn essentially argues that the problem with Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s strategic review is that it pays lip service to the importance of the political dimension of counterinsurgency without truly following it through to its logical conclusions, and that the troop increase he requested is presented as an open-ended commitment. Instead, according to Corn, the troop increase should be bounded in time, put in the context of Vice President […]

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