Media Talk: Afghanistan – Turning the Tide?

Talk Friday 7th September, 2007

As Afghanistan overtakes Iraq as the Foreign Office’s number one priority in the war on terror, we ask whether the current British policy in this conflict-torn country is working.

Tony Blair described Helmand province in Afghanistan as the crucible in which the battle for the 21st century will be fought.

The new British foreign secretary has made Afghanistan a priority. Britain has also appointed Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, one of its most highly regarded diplomats, as ambassador to Afghanistan.

But are the international troops, diplomats and aid workers doing the right thing? Or is their presence making the situation worse?

Major General Patrick Cordingley commanded the 7th Armoured Brigade (the Desert Rats) in the Gulf war.

Dr Antonio Giustozzi – Research Officer, LSE. Giustozzi works on the security aspect of failed states and states in a critical situation. He also researches insurgency and warlordism. In recent years, he has mainly been working in and on Afghanistan.

Anthony Loyd – award-winning special correspondent for The Times. A former army officer, he served in Northern Ireland and the First Gulf War. He left the army in 1991.

Najibullah Razaq – journalist and Afghanistan analyst.

Moderated by Kirsty Lang presenter of Radio Four’s Front Row and BBC’s The World Tonight.

Previously announced Kylie Morris will not be able to moderate the event, as she is going to the Middle East.