Current Events and the Psychology of Politics

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Summary: Despite U.S. reports of progress on the battlefield, American troops were killed at the same pace in the first half of 2011 as in the first six months of 2010 — an indication that the war’s toll on U.S. forces has not eased, even as the Obama administration moves to shift more of the burden of war to the Afghans. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on July 2, 2010, Aubrey Immelman reported that Taliban suicide attackers stormed a four-story house used by the U.S. Agency for International Development in Kunduz, north Afghanistan, killing four people before succumbing in a fierce, five-hour gunbattle with Afghan security forces.

Sep 6th, 2010

Summary: The number of foreign troops killed in Afghanistan this year has reached at least 500, compared with 521 in all of 2009, according to the independent monitoring site and a tally compiled by Reuters. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on September 6, 2009, Aubrey Immelman reported that opinion polls showed support for President Barack Obama and his policies dipping sharply, though he remained personally more popular than his policies. How will those dynamics impact the 2010 election and what do they tell us about President Obama’s personal qualities and leadership style?