SUNDAY, 03/07/2021 | 6:30PM EST

Leadership and Transformation In Times of Crisis

Global Prospects | Afghanistan's Status and Hope for Peace


Sunday, March 7th, 2021 at 6:30pm EST

Hosted on Zoom - the link will be emailed to you after registration


For almost four decades, Afghanistan has experienced ceaseless violence and political turmoil. Between 1979 and 1989, Afghan mujahideen fought against the Afghan central government and its Soviet backers. The 1990s saw the fall of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan and the rise of mujahideen-led governments including the Taliban. In 2001, US and coalition forces invaded Afghanistan and ousted the Taliban regime. Nearly two decades later, the US is still embroiled in the Afghan quagmire. The US and Taliban signed an agreement in late February of 2020 outlining provisions for an American withdrawal. In September, Taliban and Afghan government representatives met for peace negotiations that continue today. 

This event, Global Prospects | Afghanistan's Status and Hope for Peace, is part of the 2021 DPE Symposium and Global Prospects Virtual Series: Leadership and Transformation in Times of Crisis. The series addresses the challenges brought globally and regionally by violent actors and their political, economic, and cultural effects. Afghanistan has faced decades of violence that have shaped it in these domains. With the 2020 US-Taliban deal, and peace talks between the Afghan government and Taliban, Afghanistan is at a major crossroads. In this discussion, we will speak with Benjamin Hopkins, Director of the Sigur Center for Asian Studies, and Jonathan Schroden, Director of CNA's Center for Stability and Development, about the current situation on the ground in Afghanistan, how peace talks have progressed, and what an American withdrawal means for the country.

This event is co-sponsored by the Onero Institute, the Sigur Center for Asian Studies, and the Delta Phi Epsilon professional foreign service fraternity and sorority at GWU.



Amb Husain Haqqani served as Pakistan's ambassador to the United States from 2008-2011 and is widely credited with managing a difficult partnership during a critical phase in the global war on terrorism. Considered an expert on radical Islamist movements, he is currently Director for South and Central Asia at Hudson Institute in Washington DC. Haqqani also co-edits the journal Current Trends in Islamist ideology.

Haqqani has been a journalist, academic and diplomat in addition to serving as advisor to four Pakistani Prime Ministers, including the late Benazir Bhutto. He received Hilal-e-Imtiaz, one of Pakistan’s highest civilian honors for public service.

He has written for Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Financial Times, Washington Post, and The Telegraph, among others. His books include Pakistan Between Mosque and Military; Magnificent Delusions: US, Pakistan and an Epic History of Misunderstanding; India v Pakistan: Why can’t we just be friends? and Reimagining Pakistan: Transforming a Dysfunctional Nuclear State

Dr. Benjamin D. Hopkins is the Director at Sigur Center for Asian Studies and Associate Professor of History and International Affairs at the Elliott School of International Affairs. A historian of modern South Asia with a specialization in the history of Afghanistan and British imperialism on the Indian subcontinent, professor Hopkins has authored, co-authored, and co-edited numerous books on the region, including The Making of Modern AfghanistanFragments of the Afghan Frontier, and Beyond Swat: History, Society and Economy along the Afghanistan-Pakistan Frontier. His new book, Ruling the Savage Periphery: Frontier Governance and the Making of the Modern State, presents a global history of how the limits of today’s state-based political order were organized in the late nineteenth century, with lasting effects to the present day. He is currently working on A Concise History of Afghanistan for Cambridge University Press, as well as a manuscript about the continuing war in Afghanistan provisionally entitled, The War that Destroyed America.


Dr. Jonathan Schroden is the Director of CNA’s Center for Stability and
Development (CSD), whose mission is to support decision-makers charged with
planning, conducting, and assessing/evaluating prevention, stability, and
development operations with objective analysis grounded in an understanding
of operations. 
Dr. Schroden also directs CNA's Special Operations Program, which focuses on bringing CNA's "full spectrum" research and analysis capabilities to bear on the most complex and challenging issues facing special operations forces (SOF) today and in the future.

Since joining CNA in 2003, Dr. Schroden has deployed or traveled 13 times to Afghanistan (twice at the request of the Commander, ISAF, and once at the request of the Commander, CSTC-A) and twice to Al Anbar, Iraq; has traveled throughout the Middle East; has gotten under way with numerous Navy ships; and has supported Hurricane Katrina disaster relief operations. He served as a strategic advisor to the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force, Multi-National Force–West in Iraq, US Central Command, and the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. He also served as CNA's first interim field representative to Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command. Most recently, he directed CNA's assessment of the Trump Administration's South Asia Strategy and an independent review of the US Marine Corps' force design efforts. Dr. Schroden is also an adjunct professor at George Washington University where he lectures on military power and effectiveness.


Laurent Kleinheinz is a third-year student at the George Washington University, studying International Affairs with a minor in Arabic. He is from San Francisco and has an interest in counter-insurgency theory and Afghan tribal politics.

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