The path to peace is still long and tedious, but today Afghans have more reason to be hopeful than ever before.
Ahmed Rashid is the author of five books on Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia. His latest book is ''Pakistan on the Brink.'' He is the author of ... the best-seller ''Taliban''.
The crisis in Afghanistan is deepening and President Ashraf Ghani needs to engage the Taliban.
Or, how Russia got a warm-water port without firing a shot.
The danger is that further fragmentation could be formalised by minority groups calling for a referendum worldwide.
Neighbouring states are questioning China’s ability to treat its Uighur population fairly and halt terrorism.
If the Afghan civil war worsens, Pakistan’s allies China and the US will lose faith in Islamabad’s intentions.
There are deep tribal, religious and traditional impediments for ISIL to make headway in Afghanistan.
Battle against extremism can’t be won without a transparent strategy that involves civil society.
Every country in the world believes that a military victory against the Taliban is now impossible.
Can Pakistan’s future be decided by more military-civilian wrestling or is joint action against extremism possible?