For War on the Rocks, CIC associate director Barnett Rubin breaks down the history of Iran's relations with Afghanistan and the Taliban.
"Though Iran’s policy toward Afghanistan may lack a foolish consistency, it has placed Iran in what may be its best attainable position in Afghanistan: No one trusts it, but no one wants to antagonize it either," writes Rubin.
In this Reuters article, CIC associate director Barnett Rubin commented on Pakistan's influence on the Taliban talks with the Afghan government.
""Pakistan has a lot of leverage, short of military options, including allowing and restricting the Taliban's mobility," Barnett Rubin, a senior advisor on Afghanistan and Pakistan under the Obama administration told Reuters."
A new book by Barnett Rubin, senior fellow and director of the Afghanistan-Pakistan Regional Project at CIC, was recently published by Oxford University Press. Afghanistan: What Everyone Needs to Know is a concise introduction to the issues facing Afghanistan today.
CIC's Barnett Rubin was interviewed in this Gandhara article about the demands to release Hajji Bashar Noorzai, a Taliban leader who is incarcerated in a U.S. prison.
"'He is politically important to the Nurzais in Loya Kandahar,' Rubin said of Noorzai’s status as an important tribal figure among the Nurzai, a large Pashtun tribe in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar and adjoining regions collective referred to as Greater Kandahar by Afghans. 'That is a very important constituency for the Taliban,' he added."
CIC's Barnett Rubin was interviewed by TOLOnews about former National Security Advisor John Bolton's new book, and what it reveals about President Trump's policy on Afghanistan.
"The main thing it shows is that President Trump doesn’t know anything about Afghanistan, he doesn’t care about Afghanistan. He just wants to get out of Afghanistan, but he wants to get out of Afghanistan in a way that is good for his reelection and that he doesn’t care about anything else at all," Rubin is quoted saying.
CIC's Barnett Rubin was interviewed by Gandhara about Taliban sanctuaries in Pakistan, which have been flagged as the "number one impediment to defeating the insurgency inside Afghanistan that now controls one-third of the country’s rural areas."
“If and only if the political agreement between the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban provides for demobilization and repatriation of Taliban fighters, including those in Pakistan, Pakistan will help implement the agreement and move against any who resist it,” Rubin said.
CIC Research Associate Said Sabir Ibrahimi was quoted in The New Arab about the appointed of Mawlavi Mahdi as a Taliban district chief—the first Shia Hazara to be selected for the group's ranks.
“The Taliban has never been an inclusive force; their leadership in Quetta and Peshawar and their political office in Doha are run by Sunni Pashtuns. They have had token Tajik commanders in the field, particularly in the north, but now they are trying to include some token Shia Hazaras in the mix,” Ibrahimi said.
The absence of effective oversight and control of private security providers (PSPs) employed by the international community undermines the credibility and effectiveness of the Afghan government, the international military and diplomatic presence, and reconstruction organizations.
World Peace is a noble goal, but not one that can occur in one move. "Building States to Build Peace: A Project of the International Peace Institute" explains that World Peace starts at a national level. Like many things when they first begin, the early years of a state are vital for establishing it for stability and enduring peace. Covering topics such as law, economics, and finance, it also outlines examples ranging from Somalia to Afghanistan.
During 2007-2008, raw opium production in Afghanistan reached a record level of an estimated 8,200 tons. In the same period, the Taliban-led insurgency supported by al-Qaida spread to new areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Both countries experienced unprecedented levels of terrorism aswell. After six years of international assistance to the Afghan government, the expansion of both the illicit narcotics industry and the insurgency constitutes a powerful indictment of international policy and capacity.