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Despite major international conferences and milestones fast approaching, the peace process in Afghanistan is unlikely to end soon. Referring to the many interdependent and intractable issues to negotiate, the lead U.S. negotiator conceded that “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.” Even if ongoing diplomatic efforts yield agreements, such deals – like the February 2020 U.S.-Taliban agreement – will likely be difficult to implement, verify, and enforce. Underlying core concerns, like the presence of transnational terrorist networks and Kabul’s weak institutional capacity, will persist regardless of the diplomatic process. This event will explore the status and prospects of the current peace process and its implications for U.S. policy. It will consider the long-term political competition between the Taliban and the Kabul government, the role of U.S. forces, and the constructive and disruptive roles that regional actors may play.
Dr. Asfandyar Mir
is a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University. His research is on the international security of South Asia, US counterterrorism policy, and al-Qaeda, with a regional focus on Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India. Some of his research has appeared in peer-reviewed journals, such as International Security
, International Studies Quarterly
, and Security Studies
, and his commentary has appeared in Foreign Affairs
, Foreign Policy
, and the Washington Post
Monkey Cage. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Chicago and a BA and MA from Stanford University.
Dr. Dipali Mukhopadhyay
is an associate professor at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. Her research focuses on the relationships between political violence, state building, and governance during and after war. She is currently serving as senior expert on the Afghanistan peace process for the U.S. Institute of Peace. She is the author of Good Rebel Governance: Revolutionary Politics and Western Intervention in Syria
(Cambridge University Press, forthcoming) with Kimberly Howe, and Warlords, Strongman Governors and State Building in Afghanistan
(Cambridge University Press, 2014). Prior to joining the Humphrey School, Mukhopadhyay was on the faculty at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs from 2012 to 2020. She holds a PhD from Tufts University and a BA from Yale University.
Dr. Arzan Tarapore
is the South Asia research scholar at the Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center at Stanford University, where he leads the newly-restarted South Asia research initiative. He is also a senior nonresident fellow at the National Bureau of Asian Research. His research focuses on Indian military strategy and contemporary Indo-Pacific security issues. He previously held research positions at the RAND Corporation, the Observer Research Foundation, and the East-West Center in Washington. Prior to his scholarly career, he served as an analyst in the Australian Defence Department, which included an operational deployments to Afghanistan. Arzan holds a PhD in war studies from King’s College London.
This event is co-sponsored by: The Center for South Asia