Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni speaks during a visit to Juba, South Sudan, Oct. 15, 2018 (AP photo by Bullen Chol).
KAMPALA, Uganda—Fifty-one Afghan evacuees arrived at Uganda’s international airport in Entebbe on a chartered flight on Aug. 25. They were shunted across the hot tarmac into buses and brought to lakeside hotels previously emptied due to the coronavirus pandemic.  Their arrival was the result of a deal Uganda made with the United States, in which Kampala promised to provide temporary shelter to some 2,000 “at risk” Afghan evacuees. The agreement was celebrated by Ugandan and American politicians, but the details of exactly how it came about, and the fate of the asylees themselves, remain shrouded in secrecy. The deal also [...]
Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in a virtual meeting with leaders of the Collective Security Treaty Organization to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, in Moscow, Aug. 23, 2021 (Kremlin pool photo by Evgeniy Paulin via AP).
While the failure of the United States’ two-decade campaign to reshape Afghanistan was a source of no little schadenfreude in Moscow, the collapse of Ashraf Ghani’s U.S.-backed government has thrust Russia into a challenging position. Even as President Vladimir Putin confirmed that Russia has no intention of deploying troops to Afghanistan itself, the potential for radicalization and violence around Russia’s borders is foisting greater responsibility for regional security on Moscow at a time of mounting domestic difficulties.  The Ghani government’s collapse and the departure of U.S. forces from central Eurasia, seemingly for good, also offers Russia a window of opportunity to [...]
Moroccan U.N. peacekeepers patrol Bangassou, Central African Republic, Feb. 14, 2021 (AP photo by Adrienne Surprenant).
Two weeks ago, in the aftermath of the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, I argued that a United Nations peacekeeping mission should be considered as part of, or complementary to, a strengthened mandate for the U.N.’s existing political mission in the country, UNAMA. Since then, a group of over 20 scholars has been working with the University of Massachusetts-Amherst’s Human Security Lab to game out scenarios, consolidate the supporting evidence and make some research-backed guesses about whether peacekeeping should be on the table in Afghanistan today. The emerging consensus in this group is that there are reasons to think it should, based on peacekeeping’s record of success [...]
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