Books

Newly Relevant: Ahmed Rashid's Descent into Chaos

President Obama, while apparently committed to troop withdrawals in Iraq, has decided to double down in Afghanistan, bolstering our forces there by 17,000 troops. Originally published in June of last year, Ahmed Rashid’s Descent into Chaos recounts both the Clinton and Bush administrations’ errors in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Clinton lacked a “coherent strategy for undermining the Taliban regime,” while the Bush team, and particularly Donald Rumsfeld, made things actively worse. And Rashid has some chilling advice for anyone hoping to get out of Afghanistan in the years to come: “Afghanistan is not going to be able to pay for its own army for many years to come—perhaps never.”