Afghanistan After 2014. Five Scenarios
Publish date: 2012-04-12
Report number: FOI-R--3424--SE
Written in: English
- United States
By the end of 2014 the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), will, if the timetable remains fixed, have withdrawn from Afghanistan. After a period of transition which already has begun the full responsibility for security will be transferred to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). But the signs of progress have so far been few. A number of uncertainties keep hanging as a dark cloud at the horizon. The Taliban insurgency is not broken, the ANSF are still not fully manned, and the national government suffers heavily from widespread corruption. The list of problems, that ideally should have been solved many years ago, is long. The important question is then: What will happen in Afghanistan after 2014 when the transition has been completed and ISAF has left the country? This report focuses on some of the key issues that will be of importance for Afghanistan after 2014 and develops a small set of possible scenarios. Among the main conclusions are that a peace settlement that allows the Taliban to join the government of Afghanistan is the best hope for a sustainable peace, that the Kabul regime is too weak to continue the war on its own, and that there is a risk for a new power vacuum in Afghanistan once the ISAF has left the country. There is a risk for a new geopolitical tug of war between the regional powers. A peace settlement that includes all major parties-the Kabul regime, the Taliban, the United States, Pakistan and India-is necessary to guarantee a lasting peace.