Monday, October 15, 2018
The military offensive to uproot ISIS from the northern Iraqi city of Hawija, entering a new phase this week, is aimed at clearing out an estimated 1,000-2,000 insurgents from what is one of the extremist group’s last Iraqi strongholds. The next battle will be the layers of ethnic, religious and sectarian tension that will complicate any recovery.
Iraqi political leaders in Baghdad and Erbil, the Kurdistan regional capital, have escalated their rhetoric this week, as Kurdish officials reported 92 percent approval of the Sept. 25 nonbinding vote on independence for the region. The verbal volleys and intensifying actions risk triggering another outbreak of violent conflict.
A year ago today, hundreds of joyous Colombians and world leaders gathered in the humid coastal city of Cartagena as the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) signed a comprehensive settlement that once had seemed unattainable. But while implementation of the accord continues generally in the right direction, it is often traveling a bumpy road.
The eviction of ISIS from the northern Iraqi town of Hawija in a military operation that began today will signify more than the extremist group losing its last major stronghold in the country. Its recapture, delayed first for other military campaigns...
China’s “Belt and Road” infrastructure and investment plan is sending Chinese state-owned enterprises to build roads, ports, railways, and other projects in areas that more risk-averse companies traditionally avoid. From Asia to Africa, this massive initiative increasingly will engage China in areas afflicted by violent conflict.
Iraqi forces backed by the U.S.-led coalition recaptured the last areas of Nineveh Province still held by ISIS this week, after retaking the provincial capital Mosul in July. A few smaller but important areas of Iraq remain to be liberated...
An East African initiative to revive the stalled peace agreement in South Sudan, where the civil war’s death toll continues to rise, must urgently develop criteria for which groups should be represented, to ensure a more durable outcome. Several steps could help define those criteria.
The new U.S. plan for Afghanistan--adding troops, trying to coax the Taliban into a peace process, and supporting government reforms--is being met with skepticism and outright hostility by some who believe the situation there has always been hopeless. But the idea that nothing has worked in Afghanistan, let alone that nothing would have ever worked, is a profound misreading of the past 16 years.
As President Trump’s senior advisor, Jared Kushner, was leading delegation meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Palestinian President Abbas last week, the U.S. State Department spokesperson demurred on whether the administration supports a two-state solution, noting a preference...
Afghanistan’s leaders are mostly breathing a sigh of relief at the release of the new U.S. strategy after such a long delay. President Trump’s speech featured important reassurances to Afghanistan and some useful warnings all around. But it also leaves questions about the difficulty of reaching the goals that both the Afghan and U.S. governments have set out.