Sunday, 27 June 2010

Afghanistan behind the Headlines

I don't normally venture into foreign affairs. The story of how General Stanley McChrystal was sacked by President Barack Obama has been one of the main foreign news stories this week. I want to recommend full reading of Michael Hasting's outstanding (award winning?) journalism for Rolling Stone. Yes there's the story of McChrystal bad mouthing people but there are several other insights too.

The casual homophobia, dinner with a male French minister is so expletive deleted "gay".

The gentle derision of Britain whatever we think of the special relationship....

"The job instead went to British Ambassador Mark Sedwill – a move that effectively increased McChrystal's influence over diplomacy by shutting out a powerful rival. "In reality, that position needs to be filled by an American for it to have weight," says a U.S. official familiar with the negotiations."

Generally it is enlightening to have an account of the war in Afghanistan from a non-British perspective, which examines whether counter-insurgency (COIN) is working. So I thoroughly recommend a read here, and wish such detailed reporting was more frequent in the British media.


  1. It is time that the UK played a less prominent role in the affairs of the world in line with our respective size and limited resources.
    We should step back and give some thought to some of our relationships.
    One point on UK politics though. We finally finished paying back the monies we borrowed of the USA as a result of WW2 in 2006. I`m led to believe its less than what we currently owe. I would like Labour to calm down on the goverment bashing over cuts. I believe we are in serious trouble and we need to get the message across. I listened to someone on benefit claiming they wouldn`t be able afford to pay for their tv & phone if their money was reduced. How did we get our priorities so wrong?

  2. See my Facebook Mark. There is a William Dalrymple group on FB. He was very interesting on Jeremy Vine show the other day re Afghanistan.