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Little America: The War Within the War for Afghanistan

Events | Headline and Cultural Forums

Washington Post correspondent Rajiv Chandrasekaran (author of the award winning Imperial Life in the Emerald City) discusses how Obama's hope for a good war and the Pentagon's desire for a resounding victory in Afghanistan would end up as neither. Following the surge of troops and aid to Afghanistan, Chandrasekaran found efforts sabotaged not only by Afghan and Pakistani malfeasance but by infighting and incompetence within the American government: a war cabinet arrested by vicious bickering among top national security aides; diplomats and aid workers who failed to deliver on their grand promises; generals who dispatched troops to the wrong places; and headstrong military leaders who sought a far more expansive campaign than the White House wanted - ultimately countering the momentum and spirit of the surge. Through detailed on-the-ground reporting and decades of attitudes and values informed by Cold War posturing to woo the country from Soviet influence , Chandrasekaran explores whether the United States has ever understood Afghanistan or ever will.

 

Cosponsored with Powell's City of Books

 

Free admission; no registration required.



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