World update: March 10-11 2018

ASIA AFGHANISTAN At least 24 Afghan soldiers were killed on Saturday in Farah province when, while assembling for an operation, they were attacked by the Taliban. In related news, the Taliban have apparently been telling religious scholars not to attend a conference later this month in Indonesia that is supposed to build momentum for negotiations… Continue reading World update: March 10-11 2018

Asia/Africa update: December 20 2017

ASIA KYRGYZSTAN The Kyrgyz government shut down an opposition-owned TV network on Tuesday, just a few hours after ordering two independent journalists and a human rights activist to pay around $430,000 in a previously awarded libel settlement in one lump sum rather than over time. So if you had 2017 in your office pool as… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: December 20 2017

Asia/Africa update: October 30 2017

ASIA AFGHANISTAN At least 15 Afghan police officers were killed on Monday in two separate Taliban attacks, one Ghazni province and the other in Zabul. Also on Monday, the Taliban said that Kevin King, an American professor it kidnapped from Kabul University in August 2016, is gravely ill with heart and kidney problems. Stimson’s Ali… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: October 30 2017

Conflict update: May 5 2017

FRANCE France’s runoff election is this Sunday, and active campaigning ended today, so there shouldn’t be any more major developme– With mere minutes to go before the end of active campaigning in France’s presidential election on Friday evening, front-runner Emmanuel Macron’s campaign released a statement saying it had been the victim of a “massive” computer… Continue reading Conflict update: May 5 2017

Conflict update: April 24 2017

SYRIA Bashar al-Assad’s next big target in Syria is retaking Idlib province, into which he and Moscow have cleverly funneled most of the northern rebel forces and a disturbing number of displaced civilians. The Century Foundation’s Sam Heller makes a reasonable suggestion as to what role the West should play when the Idlib fight begins… Continue reading Conflict update: April 24 2017

Conflict update: January 30 2017

Iraq Purely by coincidence, my absence from regular blogging coincided with the planned lull in the Mosul operation. With eastern Mosul having been liberated just before I checked out, the Iraqis have been laying the groundwork for the eventual assault on the western half of the city. Iraq forces have been actively liberating villages north… Continue reading Conflict update: January 30 2017

The most predictable government shutdown ever

Via Jim White at emptywheel, the exciting new national unity government in Afghanistan has already broken down over picking a cabinet: The 45-day period President Ashraf Ghani hoped it would take to form the new cabinet ended on Thursday without an announcement of appointments. The spokesman for Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah said that while… Continue reading The most predictable government shutdown ever