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Brookings Mountain West


The United States and its allies have spent more than a decade of great effort and sacrifice to fight the Taliban and stabilize the government in Afghanistan. Yet the insurgents have not been defeated, and many Afghans believe that a civil war is coming after 2014 when the United States winds down its military presence in the country. Dr. Felbab-Brown will analyze the U.S. and international counterinsurgency and stabilization efforts in Afghanistan. She will outline scenarios of Afghanistan’s future after 2014 and discuss U.S. policy options for maximizing its important interests in Afghanistan and South Asia. She will analyze how the Western tendency to ally with bullies, warlords, and smugglers in pursuit of short-term military advantage actually empowers the forces working against good governance and long-term political stability. The lecture will be interspersed with vivid personal accounts of Dr. Felbab-Brown’s time spent in the war-torn nation, where she has been traveling and doing research during the past decade. Dr. Felbab-Brown will also draw implications for the international intervention to depose the terrorists in Mali.


Afghanistan; Armed Forces; Civil war; Military policy; Political stability; Smugglers; Taliban; Taliban members; Terrorism; Warlordism; Warlordism and international relations


International Relations | Military and Veterans Studies | Military, War, and Peace | Political Science