By Ashton B. Carter, Former Co-Director, Preventive Defense Project, Harvard & Stanford Universities
Discussion Paper by Dr. Ashton B. Carter
April 11, 2013
Op-Ed, Boston Globe
By Nicholas Burns, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
Professor Burns shares his key takeaways from the "Future of Afghanistan" conference he co-hosted on April 4-5 at Harvard. Like most wars, this will not be won on the battlefield; rather, it will be brought to an end in a negotiated solution between the Afghan government and the Taliban. He reminds us that the U.S. government has a basic responsibility, moral as well as political, to stay involved as the majority of Afghans wish, but that we should seek greater political and financial support from Afghanistan’s powerful neighbors — Russia, China, India, and Iran.
Wartime rape is neither ubiquitous nor inevitable. The level of sexual violence differs significantly across countries, conflicts, and particularly armed groups. Some armed groups can and do prohibit sexual violence. Such variation suggests that policy interventions should also be focused on armed groups, and that commanders in effective control of their troops are legally liable for patterns of sexual violence they fail or refuse to prevent.
February 7, 2013
Op-Ed, Power & Policy Blog
By Scott Moore, Giorgio Ruffolo Doctoral Research Fellow, Sustainability Science Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group
"...[I]t is clear that the international community possessed neither the analytic tools nor the institutional capabilities to deal with a world order in which ethno-religious groups, and not nation-states, were the primary operative actors. Which brings us back to the question: what if organized state violence and warfare is the exception rather than the rule in international security?"
January 25, 2013
Op-Ed, New York Times
"Only Afghans can reconcile their differences. But the international community can play a critical role in creating the conditions in which this can happen. It should be rooted in ground realities and Afghan interests. It must ensure that international policies do not unwittingly intensify local or national power struggles or undermine stability."
December 6, 2012
Op-Ed, Boston Globe
By Juliette Kayyem, Lecturer in Public Policy
"Enter John Kerry, whose status as chair of the Foreign Relations Committee made him a possible broker of compromise. While promoters of the Magnitsky bill refused to backtrack on their principles, opponents argued that Russian and US relations are too consequential to be defined by the death of a single lawyer. With these dueling priorities, months passed. But the legislative process can be cunning and capable. The Magnitsky bill was linked to something that would make the Russians happy: normalized trade status."
November 9, 2012
By Calestous Juma, Professor of the Practice of International Development; Director, Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; Principal Investigator, Agricultural Innovation in Africa
"Africa's national diversity is becoming a burden for diplomatic interaction. It is more efficient for the United States to work with regional groups in Africa than with individual states. This means that efforts to foster regional integration by creating larger markets, simplifying trading rules, reducing corruption, and investing in regional infrastructure to promote movement of goods will go a long way toward strengthening US-Africa relations."
September 10, 2012
Op-Ed, The Guardian
By Matt Waldman, Research Fellow, International Security Program
"The Arab awakening has not gone unheeded. A Taliban think-piece leaked last year asked what kind of elections they should support and how the government should meet the people's needs. They yearn to be taken seriously as a credible, national political force."
April 3, 2012
Op-Ed, New York Times
By Stephen M. Walt, Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Affairs; Faculty Chair, International Security Program
"...Afghanistan is not a vital United States interest. President Obama had said that we must prevent Al Qaeda from establishing safe havens there, but Osama bin Laden is dead and Al Qaeda already has better safe havens elsewhere. Victory in Afghanistan will not eliminate Al Qaeda, and leaving won't make it more dangerous."
Newsletter Article, Belfer Center Newsletter
As a child, Aisha Ahmad remembers vividly the arms bazaars in Peshawar and the throngs of bearded mujahedeen commanders as they passed through her grandfather’s smoke laden offices in the Pakistani frontier province.Though she was born in the UK and grew up in Canada, her family retained strong ties with their native community and during her youth Ahmad regularly traveled to the unruly Pakistan-Afghanistan border region.