South Asia

5 Items

Spc. Justin Slagle returns to Forward Operating Base Lane in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter after an air assault mission in the Zabul province of Afghanistan, Oct. 15, 2009.

U.S. Army Photo

Journal Article - International Affairs

System Failure: The Underlying Causes of US Policy-making Errors in Afghanistan

| July 2013

This article finds that there were severe shortcomings in the acquisition and processing of information and a lack of institutional self-evaluation; civilian and military leaders made major strategic misjudgements in mistaking the strategy for the goal, overestimating the efficacy of military force or resources, and drawing false lessons from history or analogous cases such as Iraq; leaders were predisposed to overconfidence and oversimplification; and, at the highest level, policies were distorted by domestic politics. The article contends that the cumulative impact of these shortcomings was sufficient to seriously disrupt the functioning of the foreign policy-making system.

Magazine Article - Time

How It Went Down

| May 7, 2012

"While journalists have provided a number of histories of the events that led to bin Laden's death, the purpose of this analysis is to examine White House decisionmaking for lessons that can be applied to future foreign policy challenges."

In a TIME magazine cover story, Belfer Center Director Graham Allison writes about decisions behind the raid that led to the death of Osama bin Laden. Allison, whose analysis is the result of more than 100 hours of interviews, is author of the prize-winning analysis of the 1971 Cuban Missile Crisis, Essence of Decision.

UN climate chief Christiana Figueres places a building block in a miniature Mayan pyramid at the site of climate negotiations in Cancun, Mexico, Nov. 28, 2010. The "Pyramid of Hope" symbolizes the many building blocks needed for a new climate agreement.

AP Photo

Magazine Article - The National Journal

Will We Know Success When We See It?

| December 6, 2010

"It might be relatively easy, but actually quite unfortunate, for countries to achieve what some people might define as 'success' in Cancun:  a signed international agreement, followed by glowing press releases.  I say it would unfortunate, because such an agreement could only be the Kyoto Protocol on steroids: more stringent targets for the original list of industrialized countries (Annex I) and no meaningful commitments by the key rapidly-growing emerging economies, such as China, India, Brazil, Korea, Mexico, and South Africa."