Magazine December 19, 2011, Issue

Retreat — but Whose?

A U.S. military vehicle drives past an Afghan soldier at a road opening ceremony in Maidan Shahr, Afghanistan, December 16, 2003. (Ahmad Masood/Reuters)
Now is no time for more force reductions in Afghanistan

Amidst spiraling deficits and scandals such as those involving Solyndra and Fast and Furious, it is sometimes easy to forget what the United States is capable of achieving. This is something that repeatedly struck me during a recent week-long trip to Afghanistan with other national-security experts at the invitation of International Security Assistance Force commander Gen. John Allen.

In late October, as we witnessed a medal-pinning ceremony under a clear blue sky in a desolate corner of Kandahar Province, just miles from Taliban leader Mullah Omar’s hometown, it was impossible not to be amazed at what America’s men and women in

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Jamie M. Fly — Mr. Fly is executive director of the Foreign Policy Initiative. He served in the office of the secretary of defense and on the National Security Council staff from 2005 to 2009.

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners


The Gonzo Files

A review of Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone: The Essential Writing of Hunter S. Thompson, edited by Jann S. Wenner.


The Week

The Week

The case for Newt is that he’s nothing like that guy who used to be governor of Massachusetts. The case for Romney is very similar.


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