chapter  2
Neither war nor peace
ByPaula R. Newberg
Pages 13

Afghanistan is in some ways a different place from what it was in - healthier, more literate, in some places more secure even as fighting has worn down the fabric of resilience among Afghan communities. With NATO's departure, a broader conversation inevitably arises about what counts as security within as human security, the security of borders, the security of the state and the security of Afghan citizens. Domestic governance issues translate into questions of raw power and foreign policy prerogative. Concerns about governance in Afghanistan and Pakistan whether with regard to the rule of law, corruption, insurgency and extremism, or economic vulnerabilities have anchored the ways in which Afghanistan's neighbours and occasional patrons respond to the state. The simple fact of sharing political power and authority rarely ends wars or creates peace on its own. Instead, politics is at once an artefact of its environment and, when successful, an engine for political change.