Following the attack on Afghan civilians by a U.S. Army sergeant, and the recent burning of Qurans by NATO soldiers, the United States' relationship with Afghanistan has come under sharp focus. Listen to CFR senior fellows Stephen Biddleand Max Bootdiscuss these events, the planned drawdown of U.S. troops by 2014, and the future of U.S. policy toward Afghanistan.
As the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan depends in part on building that country's capacity to provide for its own security, the Government Accountability Office evaluates the use of contractor personnel to fill skill and resource gaps in training and equipping the Afghan National Security Forces.
Targeted killings have become a central component of U.S. counterterrorism operations around the globe. Despite pointed criticism over transparency and accountability issues, analysts say the controversial practice seems likely to expand in the future.
The newly announced U.S. plan to end its combat mission in Afghanistan by mid-2013 could make it more difficult to realize the chief goal of helping Afghan national forces become self-sufficient, says CFR's Stephen Biddle.
The winner of the 2012 U.S. presidential race will have to make critical decisions on Afghanistan, including how to support and fund Afghan forces as well as possible concessions to the Taliban, says CFR's Stephen Biddle.
The United States continues to pursue peace talks with Afghanistan's Taliban as a means to secure stability. Bruce Riedel discusses the challenges faced by the administration, including its ongoing tensions with Pakistan.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.