Weekly Links

By Taylor Marvin

Watanabe Nobukazu,"Illustration of Russian and Japanese Army and Navy Officers", 1904. Via MIT’s Visualizing Cultures.
Watanabe Nobukazu,”Illustration of Russian and Japanese Army and Navy Officers”, 1904. Via MIT’s Visualizing Cultures.

Musings on Iraq has a very interesting interview with Michael Spagat on the issues associated with accurately estimating the death toll of the Iraq War and child mortality during the sanctions period.

Syria will miss next week’s deadline for sending its chemical weapons abroad and has given up less than 5 percent of its CW stocks, with little chance of punishment for the Assad regime’s “sort of stalling” tactics. On Twitter, Dan Trombly reminds that “proposed US military strikes would have been extremely lucky to have safely eliminated 5% of Syrian CW arsenal.”

The story of a 26 year old Syrian opposition activist attending the ongoing talks in Geneva, Switzerland.

After a prominent mention in President Obama’s State of the Union address — including a reference to “if the Afghan government signs a security agreement that we have negotiated” — foreign troops’ uncertain post-2014 status in Afghanistan forces military planners to plan for two different versions of the future. Steve Saideman examines Hamid Karzai’s interests and political strategy.

Evan Munsing on watching counterinsurgency fail in Afghanistan (via Dan Murphy). “These individuals’ only familiarity with the central government comes from being taxed and subjected to its military force,” Munsing writes of the Afghan insurgency.

From the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, leaked official document records 330 drone strikes in Pakistan (via Sarah Knuckey).

500 EU troops are headed to the Central African Republic; is a greater UN presence on the way?

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