18 Apr 2007


Mission Impossible?

Peter Bergen / Julian Lindley-French / Hekmat Karzai / Ismail Khan / Andrei Zagorski

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ESF Working Paper No. 25 /43 pages

Some experts hold that 2007 will be a ‘make or break’ year for international efforts in Afghanistan. This collection of European Security Forum papers brings together the views of experts on what is needed to secure and consolidate peace in the country as well as the restive region.
In his essay, Julian Lindley-French (Centre for Applied Policy, Munich and Defence Academy of the UK) makes clear what he believes to be at stake: whether the West has the resolve and the capacity to act as a global provider of security. Peter Bergen (New America Foundation in Washington, D.C.) analyses the return of the Taliban and outlines a strategy to counter this development. Andrei Zagorski (MGIMO-University, Moscow) draws relevant lessons from the Soviet experience in Afghanistan for the current international intervention.
Additionally, there are contributions by two experts from the region. Hekmat Karzai (Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, Kabul) provides thoughtful insights into the nature of the Taliban insurgency and the rise suicide terrorism. Ismail Khan (The Dawn Group of Newspapers, Peshawar) focuses on the situation in the border region and the difficult role that Pakistan is playing in Afghan stability. François Heisbourg, Chairman of the European Security Forum, sums up.