Monday night, President Donald Trump unveiled his long-awaited plan for Afghanistan. Trump admitted his instinct was to withdraw from the war-torn country, where U.S. forces have been fighting since 2001. But when push came to shove, fears that international terrorist groups might once again use Afghanistan as a safe haven to strike America tipped the scales. Trump is now pursuing the same goal as his predecessors: to prevent this from happening. He sold his plan to accomplish this as “a new strategy.” It isn’t.
First, strategies articulate a clear political objective and match means to ends. Trump defined victory as “attacking our enemies, obliterating ISIS, crushing al-Qaida, preventing the Taliban from taking over Afghanistan, and stopping mass terrorist attacks against America before they emerge.” He never said how America would achieve this. Read the full article in Fortune.
More from CNAS
CommentaryTrump was right to abandon the Taliban peace deal. Here’s what a good one would look like.
Two months after President Trump declared U.S.-Taliban peace talks “dead,” diplomacy with the Afghan insurgents is reviving. With the administration already having negotiated ...
By David H. Petraeus & Vance Serchuk
CommentaryThe U.S. Military is Not, and Can Never Be, Afghanistan’s Police
In 1829, the father of modern policing, Sir Robert Peel, established “Peel’s Principles” to describe the role of police at large. Almost 200 years later, policing has changed ...
By COL Sarah Albrycht
PodcastEnding the war in Afghanistan
Christopher D. Kolenda joins The World and Everything in It to discuss the latest developments in talks between the United States and the Taliban. Listen to the full conversa...
By Christopher D. Kolenda
PodcastThe Key Role Pakistan Is Playing In U.S.-Taliban Talks
A bomb parked under the preacher's pulpit in a mosque likely had a high-profile target: a brother of the Taliban leader. It was seen by the Taliban as a warning to stop their ...
By Stephen Tankel