Reinforcement troops from the Afghan army prepared to travel to Kandahar.
Eli Lake, Bloomberg: Trump Has to Decide: 50,000 Troops to Afghanistan?
A new classified intelligence brief says the Ghani government can survive if the U.S. recommits.
A new Afghanistan war strategy approved last month by President Donald Trump's top military and national security advisers would require at least 50,000 U.S. forces to stop the advance of the Taliban and save the government in Kabul, according to a classified U.S. intelligence community assessment.
U.S. intelligence and national security officials familiar with the assessment tell me that it was drafted in April, and that it provided estimates of necessary troop strengths for various strategic options. But it found that if an ambitious war plan approved by the National Security Council's principals committee got a green light from the president -- a big if -- more than 50,000 U.S. troops would be needed.
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Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- May 17, 2017
American military suffering from myopia in Asia? -- Grant Newsham, Asia Times
Erdoğan outgunned at Trump meeting in face of US-Russian united front -- Simon Tisdall, The Guardian
What Iran’s high-stakes election means for voters and the world -- Amir Handjani, Reuters
Posting political opinions: how Iran's social media is shaping its presidential election -- Shabnam von Hein, DW
Putin, North Korea and what Russia really wants in the region -- ALexander Titov, The Conversation
Take a lesson from the Cold War to work with North Korea -- Robert Haffa, Defense News
China Is Building Its Way to an Empire -- Noah Feldman, Bloomberg
Can China Afford Its Belt and Road? -- Christopher Balding, Bloomberg
China's Stake in the Kashmir Dispute -- Fahad Shah, The Diplomat
In Vietnam, the Curious Fall of a Communist Leader -- Murray & Pham, The Diplomat
Japan risks isolation in the Asia-Pacific -- Jean-Pierre Lehmann, Straits Times
Why Ukraine Said 'Nyet' to Russian Social Networks -- Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg
Germany Will Lose if Macron Fails -- Hans-Helmut Kotz, Project Syndicate
“Buy American” Threatens Our NATO Alliances -- Geoff Davis. RCD
The Future of the Venezuelan Crisis -- Allison Fedirka, RCW
What Happens When Intelligence Agencies Lose Faith in the President? -- David Frum, The Atlantic
The Risks of Sharing Intelligence -- Priscilla Alvarez, The Atlantic