Tag Archives: Taliban

The Taliban Are Not Afghanistan

I cannot begin to count how many times, when talking to a policymaker, a journalist or an ordinary person in Britain, that they have tried to tell me that it’s pointless to oppose the Taliban in Afghanistan, because the Taliban are somehow ‘natural’ or ‘essential’ to the country. They believe that the Taliban are so innate to Afghanistan that they could never be beaten or marginalised. 

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The Taliban Created Space for ISIS Violence in Afghanistan

The Islamic State may have been driven out of its capitals in Iraq’s Mosul and Syria’s Raqqa but that doesn’t mean it has gone. In the Philippines, West Africa, and most obviously in Afghanistan, the terror group is thriving and growing.  

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ISIS Is Wreaking Afghan Terror

The bomb tore through an examination hall in Kabul on Friday, where students – mostly minority Hazara, mostly young women – were sitting a practice test in preparation for university. Thirty-five were killed, dozens more injured. An unspeakable human tragedy. 

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Is America Really Back?

When, on Tuesday, the American secretary of defence Lloyd Austin announced that 500 more American troops would be sent to Germany, a tacit intention of his speech was to convince observers that a terrible thing had been averted in the nick of time.

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Afghans Are Serious About Their Democracy. Why Aren’t We?

Free elections are not purely functional affairs, where people vote to choose their government. They are demonstrations of the faith states place in their citizens, faith which forms the basis of political power, and for the granting of influence – no matter how small – to the individual. Continue reading

Unceasing Fire

Last week saw Eid al-Adha, and ought to have brought the beginning of a ceasefire between the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban, which was announced by President Ashraf Ghani the Sunday before. Continue reading

Necessary History

Review – Salafi-Jihadism: The History of an Idea by Shiraz Maher

The advent of the Islamic State (IS) took much of the world by surprise.  The suddenness of that group’s appearance, coupled with the rapid growth of territory under its control, was a shocking development. In addition, the brutality of IS, and the extent to which it revelled in cruelty which was invariably described as ‘medieval’, meant that it was, in many ways, an organisation which defied easy description. Continue reading