Afghanistan Today: The Legacy and Future of a Seemingly Endless War

Event Date: 
Friday, March 24, 2017
Event Time: 
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Location: 
012 Bentheim Hall

The Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination, in partnership with the Student Veterans Organization at Princeton University, will host a day-long seminar, "Afghanistan Today: The Legacy and Future of a Seemingly Endless War," beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, March 24, 2017, in 012 Bendheim Hall, with Michael Barry, Associate Research Scholar at LISD. Barry returns from a visit to Kabul this month, where he held conversations with key Afghan stakeholders. The seminar is open to Princeton University faculty and students, and active-duty military and veterans. To attend, RSVP to Angella Matheney. Space is limited.

Topics to be covered in the seminar will include the fundamental sociology and traditional politics of Afghanistan; the geopolitical logic and strategic constants of the successive Imperial British, Soviet and American wars in the country; the present role of such powers in the region as Iran, Pakistan and China; the rise of radical Islam; the weapon of terror; the refugee hemorrhage; and the threats to the nation's sheer social cohesion - with international consequences - after nearly four decades of seemingly unending conflict.

Dr. Michael Barry is currently an associate research scholar with the Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination. He is internationally recognized as a leading expert on Afghanistan and its languages where his work over more than four decades has ranged from archaeological and anthropological research to defense of human rights on the ground in the most dangerous conditions of war: as leader of clandestine French medical teams into the interior during the 1979-1989 Soviet occupation, as humanitarian officer in the field for the United Nations during the 1989-1996 post-Soviet civil conflict, and until this day as educational adviser for Afghan programs sponsored by the United States and France. His publications in English and French on Iranian and Afghan history, literature, arts and politics have won twelve literary prizes from the United States, France and Iran, and his course at Princeton University on "Afghanistan and the Great Powers,” was taught from 2004 to 2016. 

Schedule: 

Continental Breakfast served at 08:00-08:30

Introduction: 08:30-08:45

Session 1: 08:45-10:15 - “Afghan Culture, Politics, & Society”

Break: 10:15-10:30

Session 2: 10:30-12:00 – “British Experience”

Break: 12:00-12:15

Skype Lunch w/ MAJ Pete Erickson: 12:15-13:00

Session 3: 13:00-14:30 – “Soviet Experience”

Break: 14:30-14:45

Session 4: 14:45-16:15 – “American Experience”

Closing Comments: 16:15-16:30