August 2011: A meeting on "High Politics Solutions to the Afghanistan Crisis"

Can the U.S. assume leadership in crafting a political solution to the Afghanistan crisis that satisfies the core interests of the major regional actors – Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Iran, and the Afghan Taliban?  

In August, Stephen Van Evera chaired a small meeting of expert scholars and policymakers that explored this question by examining a range of policy options and frameworks. Options discussed included: a guarantee of Afghan neutrality respected by regional powers, a U.S.-Pakistan agreement on Afghanistan, a U.S.-brokered peace between India and Pakistan that enhances Pakistan’s perception of its security, the political integration of the Afghan Taliban into Afghanistan’s governance, and greater economic cooperation in South Asia that enmeshes Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India. Participating scholars included Ambassador James Dobbins (Director, RAND International Security and Defense Policy, RAND Corporation), Stephen Cohen (Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution), Audrey Kurth Cronin (George Mason University, Public Policy), and Shuja Nawaz (Director of the South Asia Center, Atlantic Council of the United States). Two officials from the State Department – Peter Mandaville (Member of the Policy Planning Staff) and Vikram Singh (Deputy Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan) – participated in the discussion.  

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