Earlier this week the American Enterprise Institute hosted a panel discussion with Frederick and Kimberly Kagan, Jack Keane, and Andrew Exum about their recent “Defining Success in Afghanistan” report.
Two thousand ten was a pivotal year in determining the prospects for success in Afghanistan. In December, President Barack Obama and his administration favorably reviewed US strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan, reporting significant progress in weakening al Qaeda’s presence in the region, though acknowledging the short- and long-term challenges that the United States, its allies, and its Afghan partner face in securing a stable Afghanistan. A great deal of confusion, however, remains in the public debate about what success in Afghanistan would look like and why the current approach can succeed after ten years of efforts that did not. Resident scholar Frederick W. Kagan, who directs the Critical Threats Project at AEI, and Kimberly Kagan, founder and president of the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), spent 150 days in Afghanistan in 2010 and will lay out the key details of their latest report, “Defining Success in Afghanistan,” copublished by AEI and ISW. General Jack Keane, former vice chief of staff for the US Army, and Center for a New American Security fellow Andrew M. Exum, who served both on active duty and as a civilian adviser to General Stanley A. McChrystal in Afghanistan, will comment. AEI’s Danielle Pletka will moderate.
The video of the event is available online. This is a good opportunity for debaters to hear the pro-COIN, pro-war side of the Afghanistan debate presented by some of its leading advocates.