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Afghanistan: Government Formation and Performance

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Publication Date: April 2009

Publisher(s): Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service

Series: RS21922

Topic: Politics (Political status)

Coverage: Afghanistan


Over the past year U.S. officials have been shifting away from reliance on building the central government and toward promoting local governing bodies and security
initiatives as a complement to efforts to build central government capabilities. That trend will continue, according to the Obama Administration’s review of U.S. strategy, the results of which were announced on March 27, 2009. The review also stated that the United States will increase economic development efforts, and develop benchmarks with which to judge the performance and legitimacy of the Afghan government, including its efforts to curb official corruption. The review did not emphasize building democracy in Afghanistan, although that goal appears implicit within its recommendations. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy, by Kenneth Katzman.