Authors Posts by Salman Rafi Sheikh

Salman Rafi Sheikh

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With Afghan elections in April, Ghani regime caught in a bind...

Notwithstanding the importance of the on-going talks between the Afghan Taliban and the US and the participation of the former in the recently-held Moscow...

Trump’s melodrama vis-à-vis Pakistan meets ground realities

The Trump administration's renewed push to seek Pakistan's help in bringing the Afghan Taliban to the negotiating table comes as a striking contrast to...

India’s dead-end Afghan policy

While India has been investing in Afghanistan for several years, the changing dynamics of the Afghan war indicate that this economic, political and diplomatic...

US-Pakistan relations enter new phase of deterioration over Afghanistan and Taliban

US President Donald Trump’s blatant ‘game of accusations’ vis-à-vis Pakistan regarding the latter’s alleged role in hiding Osama bin Laden and “doing nothing” to...

How the Moscow factor will play in Afghanistan

While the Russian authorities were right in calling the recently held Afghan peace talks in Moscow ‘unique’ because of their ability to bring together...

Taliban-US talks: There is more to it than meets the eye

After meeting US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, the Afghan Taliban are said to have agreed to hold a second round of talks on paving the...

India’s limited life-line in Afghanistan

While India continues to plan to expand its foothold in Afghanistan, using its alliance with the United States as its main source of support,...

Afghanistan: The big story of massive aid waste

There are ghost soldiers; ghost police officers; ghost clinics and even ghost patients in Afghanistan. There are billions of dollars spent on papers, but...

China’s discreet headway into Afghanistan

While China continues officially to deny playing a leading role in managing conflict in Afghanistan, there is also no gainsaying that China continues to...

Taliban are talking from a position of strength

While the US-Taliban talks are of paramount importance in terms of bringing the 17 years old war to an end, there remains little to...

As Taliban influence grows, dialogue without regional consensus won’t do much...

The importance of the US-Taliban direct dialogue notwithstanding, it remains unclear as to what substantial outcome this will produce without a political and geo-political...

What the Afghan war looks like after 17 years?

Afghanistan’s geopolitics has changed; the ‘war on terror’ narrative is absolutely dead given that the US is now talking to the Taliban (the erstwhile...

Pompeo claims to “reset” ties with Pakistan but makes India “strategic...

Just few days before the arrival of the US Secretary of the State, Mike Pompeo, in Pakistan, the US officially cancelled US$300 million aid...

Why Zalmay Khalilzad might be a bad choice for Taliban negotiations

The appointment of Zalmay Khalilzad as special adviser on Afghanistan has caused consternation in the region for obvious reasons: he is among several veterans...

Taliban seeks legitimacy by reforming itself as prospects of returning to...

While the war in Afghanistan has changed many things over the past 17 years, the most noticeable transformation has been the return of the...

Saudi investment in CPEC will deepen Pak ties with Riyadh and...

Pakistan has officially invited Saudi Arabia to not only invest in the geo-economically celebrated China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) but also be a strategic partner,...

Divergence with the US brings Pakistan & Iran closer, but not...

Notwithstanding the not-so-warm past, the fact that Iran’s foreign minister is the first foreign dignitary to visit the newly established government of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf...

New regional configurations taking lead in Afghanistan war

About two weeks ago Pakistan reportedly hosted spy-chiefs of Russia, China and Iran to formulate a joint policy and a platform for extended co-operation...

The learned and not learned lessons from Afghanistan

While the most regular and most reported feature of life in Afghanistan remains the US ‘war on terror’ and the way this war continues...

To forge their peace, Afghan Taliban wage their war

While the latest Taliban attack on the city of Ghazni in Afghanistan has led many in the West, especially the mainstream media, to conclude...

India faces tough choices as the US sanctions Iran

For the Indian policy makers, one of the crucial questions today is of how to walk a balancing act between the US, their prime...