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A U.S. soldier holds the national flag ahead of a handover ceremony at CampLeatherneck in Lashkar Gah in the Afghan province of Helmand on April 29.
(WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP/Getty Images)
Reflections

The United States Sets Its Sights Beyond Afghanistan

Aug 22, 2017 | 03:43 GMT

Despite the U.S. confirmation of support to the region, major geopolitical factors will determine the success of any Western strategy in Afghanistan.

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French President Emmanuel Macron will soon focus on Central and Eastern Europe, meeting with the leaders of Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia in Salzburg on Aug. 23, and then visiting Romania on Aug. 24 and Bulgaria on Aug. 25. The official goal of these meetings is to discuss the situation of Eastern European nationals working in Western Europe. But France is also playing a more subtle political game.
A ceremony, complete with a Hindu priest, marks the commissioning of a new Indian fighter jet in Bangalore.

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    Reflections

    French President Emmanuel Macron will soon focus on Central and Eastern Europe, meeting with the leaders of Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia in Salzburg on Aug. 23, and then visiting Romania on Aug. 24 and Bulgaria on Aug. 25. The official goal of these meetings is to discuss the situation of Eastern European nationals working in Western Europe. But France is also playing a more subtle political game.
    The peaceful view of Doha's skyline belies the turmoil that Qatar has experienced since Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed diplomatic and economic ties with the country.
    Supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rally in Istanbul after last July's failed coup attempt. The would-be coup quickly turned into a political opportunity for Erdogan, who has consolidated his power in the year since.
    Kazan is the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan in Russia.
    From energy to defense, Warsaw sees in the U.S. president a way to keep relations as strong as possible.
    The national flags of China and Hong Kong hang above the street in anticipation of the 20-year anniversary of the handover of the city from the United Kingdom.

    Global Perspectives

    Muqtada al-Sadr has long been something of an enigma.
    On Aug. 21, millions of Americans will migrate to towns along the path of The Great American Eclipse.
    More than a billion people celebrate Aug. 15 as India's Independence Day.
    Economic relations within the Gulf Cooperation Council continue to suffer the effects of the current crisis surrounding Qatar.
    Globally, more than 75 million children are out of school due to conflict and natural disasters, approximately the same number of children who are in school across the European Union.
    After years of negotiation, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) recently awarded the right to host the 2024 and 2028 Summer Olympics to Paris and Los Angeles, respectively.
    Kazakhstan's economy, Central Asia's largest, witnessed growth of 4.2 percent year-on-year in the first half of 2017, according to the country's national statistics agency.
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