Writers

Marsha Reid

The escalation of AFRICOM

AFRICOM

While there has been much ado over the intensification of U.S. operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan, developments in South Asia have overshadowed another equally important development: President Barack Obama's escalation of military operations on the African continent.

Pakistan Tensions Jeopardize Afghan Strategy

PakistanFlag, cc Flickr Nicolas Raymond, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The latest political tensions in Pakistan, which could see key members of government ousted, threaten to unravel President Obama's Afghan strategy before it even has the chance to take root.

Pakistan’s New Spy Chief

MQ-9_Reaper_UAV, public domain, U.S. Air Force Photo / Lt. Col. Leslie Pratt

Far from being a routine reshuffling exercise, Pakistan’s appointment of a new chief for the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) comes amid growing US pressure for reform and concern about the premier spy agency’s loyalty in the “war on terror”. 

The Bush Administration and the Global Arms Trade

Armssales, cc Flickr U.S. Army, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

With the “war on terror” entering its seventh year, the Bush administration is brokering dozens of foreign weapons deals in order to combat terrorism by re-arming Iraq and Afghanistan, containing North Korea and Iran, and cementing ties with onetime Russian allies. 

US in Hot Pursuit of Pakistan Taliban across the Afghan Border

A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter prepares to land as U.S. soldiers provide security from a building window at the Khyber Border Coordination Center near Torkham Gate at the Afghanistan-Pakistan border in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province, Jan. 4, 2015.

A pre-dawn raid conducted in Pakistan by US commandos from Afghanistan has been condemned by Pakistani officials as a breach of sovereignty, reflecting concerns that the US’ unilateral operations in the “war on terror” could foment social unrest in Pakistan, undermine the civilian government, and imperil US-Pakistani relations.

Pakistan’s Murky Future

Mushareff, cc Flickr OpenDemocracy, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf’s decision to resign rather than face impeachment by parliament will have both domestic and international implications: a political power vacuum for a fractious Pakistan, and the loss of a once indispensible ally in the “war on terror” for the US.

Russia: “United States is Inciting Georgia”

Georgia, cc Flickr miss_rubov, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Contrary to being a detached observer of the conflict in Georgia, Russian officials claim the US has incited the Georgian offensive in South Ossetia via years of military assistance and training. 

Cuba, Missile Defense, and Cold War Redux

IRBM and MRBM routes

In a move aimed at spiting Washington for its planned missile defense system in Central Europe, Russia has announced it will boost bilateral cooperation with Cuba.

Nicaragua Bolsters FARC

Daniel Ortega, cc Flickr Eden, Janine and Jim, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

In contrast to previous bellicose posturing, Nicaragua’s leftist president offered on Wednesday to mediate talks on behalf of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in an effort to end Colombia’s 44-year civil conflict. 

European Missile Defense

Political map of eastern hemisphere

In a move harkening back to the Cold War, Russia has threatened to respond militarily and technologically to U.S plans for a missile defense system in Central Europe, plans that could re-trigger an arms race.

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