Transitional Justice and State Building in Afghanistan

Larry Sampler, Institute for Defense Analysis, and Alex Thier,
Senior Rule of Law Advisor, US Institute of Peace, discuss transitional
justice and state building in Afghanistan. Four years into the
international intervention, Afghanistan has passed a new constitution,
held national elections for President and Parliament, disarmed
thousands of former combatants, sent girls back to school, and seen
double digit economic growth for several years in a row. At the same
time, 2005 was the bloodiest year since the fall of the Taliban, and
the insurgency seems better funded, trained, and protected; 2006 is on
the verge of producing a record opium harvest despite substantial
investments in counter-narcotics; local warlords continue to hold sway
in much of the countryside – preventing competent and legitimate
government; and there are fundamental questions regarding freedom of
religion. Thier and Sampler will address the challenges of establishing
legitimate Afghan institutions that can overcome these problems, while
delivering services to an impoverished population and building popular
support.

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