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Research Report

FOCUSED ENGAGEMENT: A New Way Forward in Afghanistan

Christopher D. Kolenda
Copyright Date: Feb. 1, 2017
Pages: 42

Table of Contents

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  1. (pp. None)
  2. (pp. 1-1)
  3. (pp. 2-4)
  4. (pp. 5-13)

    The Obama administration’s strategy in Afghanistan has not worked as intended. Without a course correction, U.S. interests in Afghanistan and the region are at high risk of being undermined. This paper examines the reasons the current strategy is not working, presents a fresh analysis of the situation in Afghanistan and the region, evaluates alternative courses of action, and offers pragmatic recommendations to implement a new approach.

    This report has benefited from expert assessments obtained during three working group sessions, discussions with senior U.S. and Afghan military and civilian officials in Kabul, and substantial feedback during the research and drafting processes.⁶...

  5. (pp. 14-30)

    This section presents the current situation in Afghanistan and the wider region, including the interests of the United States, major terrorist groups, the Afghan government, and regional actors. It also outlines likely outcomes in the region.

    The United States has seven interests in Afghanistan and the region, ranging from vital to important.29 These interests are analyzed below by the probability of failure (i.e., that the specific interest will not be protected) and the likely level of risk (low–moderate–high) to the United States if failure does occur.30

    Prevent terror safe havens in Afghanistan capable of supporting large-scale strikes against...

  6. (pp. 31-38)
  7. (pp. 39-40)