Afghanistan

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China’s foreign minister Wang Yi: “A political resolution is still the only way out.” Photograph: Reuters/Adrian Bradshaw

China’s foreign minister Wang Yi said yesterday that the United Nations Security Council should not be pushed into any military action on Syria before(...)

Prime minister Kevin Rudd, campaigning for elections on September 7th, said he would allow the investigation to run its course and that he had full confidence in the military. Photograph: Stefan Postles/Getty Images

Australia’s military is investigating a unit of special forces soldiers accused of cutting the hands from corpses of one or more insurgents killed dur(...)

A dangerous escalation

The rush to military action against Syria led by the United States, Britain and France following the use of chemical weapons on civilians there is ill(...)

By declaring last year that Dr Bashar al-Assad would cross a “red line” that could trigger a US response if he used chemical weapons, US president Barack  Obama ensured that foreign foes and allies - as well as his Republican political rivals - would view any failure to respond as a sign of presidential weakness. Photograph: Joshua Roberts/Reuters

Most Americans want no part of a US military intervention in Syria, but there is a growing sense in Washington that President Barack Obama would face (...)

A Free Syrian Army  fighter  provides cover while his comrade inspects  a body in Aleppo this week. Photograph: Reuters

We are in August, which rather than TS Eliot’s April, seems to be the cruellest month. This time next year will mark the centenary of the outbreak of (...)

Afghan president Hamid Karzai  attends a signing ceremony with Pakistan’s prime minister Nawaz Sharif at the prime minister’s residence in Islamabad on Monday. Photograph: Mian Khursheed/Reuters

Afghan president Hamid Karzai has stressed the need for Pakistan’s help in arranging peace talks with the Taliban in a meeting with Pakistani prime mi(...)

Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales at Fort Irwin  in Califorinia. Photograph: Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System/The New York Times

A US military jury sentenced an American soldier to life in prison without the possibility of parole today for killing 16 Afghan civilians on their fa(...)

A Syrian refugee girl looks from a tent at the Domiz refugee camp in the northern Iraqi province of Dohuk. The number of Syrian children forced to flee their homeland reached 1 million today. Photograph: Thaier al-Sudani/Reuters

US and allied intelligence agencies have made a preliminary assessment that chemical weapons were used by Syrian forces in an attack near Damascus thi(...)

Bradley Manning arrives at the courthouse during his court martial at Fort Meade in Maryland yesterday.

Bradley Manning, the soldier convicted of giving classified US files to WikiLeaks, will be told today how much of his life will be spent in a military(...)

Terror in Pakistan

Nature abhors a vacuum. And the failure of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s three-month-old government to articulate its long-promised terrorism strategy(...)

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