How America Won the War in Afghanistan

September 15, 2021

The Second World War ruined our concept of conflict. It led us to believe that conflicts are wars, and wars consist of two sides fighting, with a singular monolithic outcome that one side wins. Everyone comes home. There is a parade. A sailor kisses a woman. Boom. War won. This is a myth of...

General Petraeus and the Question of Torture

September 15, 2021

The end of the US engagement in Afghanistan has produced a moment of reckoning for the nation. Everything to do with that war will inevitably be reviewed by commentators. Its origins in the 9/11 attacks of 2001 are already the focus of everyone’s attention. So is its crucial role as the intended...

Biden’s Misjudgments in Afghanistan

September 15, 2021

The Wall Street Journal reports that an Afghan translator, who helped rescue a stranded group of US senators when their helicopter was forced down in a remote part of Afghanistan in early 2008, is himself now stranded. The senatorial group consisted of Joe Biden (then-chairman of the Senate...

An Afghan Thaw in the Turkey-US Relationship?

September 14, 2021

Relations between Ankara and Washington have reached a historical nadir. Geopolitical decoupling, accumulating frustrations and proliferating crises define the context. For some time now, Turkey has been looking for useful geopolitical crises to remind the United States of its importance:...

The 9/11 Boomerang Comes Back to America

September 13, 2021

The violent attack on the US Capitol that defiled the very foundations of “the beacon of democracy” not only violently jolted the American psyche but astonished the world. While many scratched their heads and asked why this was happening, many others pointed to Donald Trump as being culpable...

Explosive Reporting From The New York Times

September 13, 2021

No serious reader of the news reflecting on how the knowledge we acquire of today’s world is disseminated through the media could deny that The New York Times is not just one of the world’s great newspapers, but also a cultural institution in its own right. That means it is skilled at playing...

The War on Terror Drove Iraq Into Iran’s Orbit

September 13, 2021

After al-Qaeda targeted the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, then-US President George W. Bush declared his (in)famous doctrine of the global war on terror, which will continue to have a great effect on the Middle East and the world for the coming decades, if not...

9/11 and the American Collective Unconscious

September 10, 2021

A little more than a month ago, the most newsworthy controversy surrounding the imminent and highly symbolic 20th anniversary of 9/11 concerned the message by families of the victims that Joe Biden would not be welcome at the planned commemoration. They reproached the US president for failing to...

Will the US Wake Up From Its Post-9/11 Nightmare?

September 10, 2021

Looking back on it now, the 1990s were an age of innocence for America. The Cold War was over and our leaders promised us a “peace dividend.” There was no TSA — the Transportation Security Administration — to make us take off our shoes at airports (how many bombs have they found in those...

Did 9/11 Change Everything?

September 10, 2021

Twenty years ago, the United States sustained the first substantial attacks on the mainland since the War of 1812. It was a collective shock to all Americans who believed their country to be impregnable. The Cold War had produced the existential dread of a nuclear attack, but that always lurked in...

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