The Taliban: Afghanistan and Pakistan A Conflict of Emergency and You
Who are the Taliban? Why are they fighting the United States and our regional allies?
February 16, 2009 Pakistani government desperate to restore peace along its border with Afghanistan Agrees to allow Taliban to enforce strict Sharia, or Islamic law, in the Swat valley Religious leaders in return, asked fighters to lay down their arms Deals with Islamic groups and Pakistan have a long history of failure Today, peace still has not been reached and Pakistan is growing every unstable as the Pakistani army and the Taliban are entering full conflict
Today in Afghanistan • Political Crisis • U.N. inspectors announced that the presidential election needs a run off vote after inspecting fraud • Current President Hamid Karzai refuses to allow run off election • States the U.N. findings were “politically motivated”
Operation Enduring Freedom Area of Operations: Afghanistan with unmanned drones operating along Pakistani border Began October 7, 2001 A Joint Special Operation Command mission leads the way to remove the Taliban from Afghanistan U.S. led coalition forces succeed in removing the Taliban from open power with in about a year In 2003, Taliban insurgents begin resisting U.N. forces of occupation Over the past year several special operation missions have been discovered pursuing Taliban into Pakistan
Coalition Losses in Afghanistan by 2009 Source: http://www.icasualties.org/OEF/
Current Event Unit: The Taliban Introduction Regional Geography Ethnic Groups Terms Historical Overview Warlords Narco-State Human Rights Taliban Law Kite Running 30 Human Rights Kite Runner Frontline: State of Emergency Frontline: Children of the Taliban
Afghanistan Ethnic Group Work • Become familiar with your newfound ethnicity • Prepare to tell the rest of the class: • Who you are • What you are known for • Where you reside in Afghanistan • Share information about your ethnicity with the class
Afghanistan Pakistan India China Russia The Arabian Sea Iran Kyrgyzstan Turkmenistan Uzbekistan Azerbaijan Kazakhstan Tajikistan Map Handout Countries to LabelComplete Vocabulary on Other Side
Opening Questions • 1. What was the Cold War? • 2. How many of the 30 International Human Rights do you remember? • 3. Why is the U.S. in Afghanistan today? • 4. Which group was responsible for the attack on the 9/11/01? • 5. What group is the U.S. at war with in Afghanistan? • 6. What is the difference between the Taliban and al Qaeda?
Historical Overview of Afghanistan Rise of the Taliban
1919 • Afghanistan regains independence after third war against British forces. • Great Britain was trying to bring the country under their sphere of influence.
1926-1929 • 1926: Amanullah proclaims himself king and attempts to introduce social reforms leading to opposition from conservative forces. • 1929: Amanullah flees after civil unrest over his reforms.
1933 • Zahir Shah becomes king and Afghanistan remains a monarchy for next four decades.
1953 • General Mohammed Daud becomes prime minister. • Turns to Soviet Union for economic and military assistance. • Introduces a number of social reforms, such as abolition of purdah (practice of secluding women from public view).
1963-1964 • 1963: Mohammed Daud forced to resign as prime minister. • 1964: Constitutional monarchy introduced - but leads to political polarization and power struggles.
1973 • Mohammed Daud seizes power in a coup and declares a republic. • Tries to play off USSR against Western powers. • His style alienates left-wing factions who join forces against him.
1978 • Daud is overthrown and killed in a coup by leftist People’s Democratic Party. • Khalq and Parcham factions fall out, leading to purging or exile of most Parcham leaders. • Conservative Islamic and ethnic leaders who objected to social changes begin armed revolt in countryside.
1979 • Power struggle between leftist leaders Hafizullah Amin and Nur Mohammed Taraki in Kabul won by Amin. • Revolts in countryside continue and Afghan army faces collapse. • Soviet Union finally sends in troops to help remove Amin, who is executed. • Soviet intervention begins.
1979-1989 • Soviet Intervention and Invasion of Afghanistan • President Reagan called it the next part of the “Great Game” -controlling Central Asia by European Powers
1980 • BabrakKarmal, leader of the People’s Democratic Party Parcham faction, is installed as ruler, backed by Soviet troops. • Anti-regime resistance intensifies with various mujahedin groups fighting Soviet forces. • U.S., Pakistan, China, Iran and Saudi Arabia supply money and arms to the mujahedin.
1985 • Mujahedin come together in Pakistan to form alliance against Soviet forces. • Half of Afghan population now estimated to be displaced by war, with many fleeing to neighboring Iran or Pakistan. • New Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev says he will withdraw troops from Afghanistan.
1986 • U.S. begins supplying mujahedin with Stinger missiles, enabling them to shoot down Soviet helicopter gunships. • Babrak Karmal replaced by Najibullah as head of Soviet-backed regime.
1988-1991 • 1988: Afghanistan, USR, the US and Pakistan sign peace accords and Soviet Union begins pulling out troops. • 1989: Last Soviet troops leave, but civil war continues as mujahedin push to overthrow Najibullah(Soviet-backed) • 1991: U.S. and USSR agree to end military aid to both sides. Mujahedin triumph.
Mujahedin • Also: Mujahideen, Mujahedeen, etc. • Muslim Resistance Fighters • “Holy Warriors” • Engaged in Jihad (“Holy War”) • Found throughout the Muslim world
Mujahedin in Afghanistan • Most were resistance fighters from local tribes • Some groups were Islamic extremists • Muslims came from all over the Arab world to take up the Jihad against the Soviets • Funded by the U.S. CIA under presidents Carter and Reagan
U.S. Rationale for Supporting Mujahedin • Containing Communism was the priority • "The U.S. ignored the threat of Islamism and used it as a bulwark against communism and revolution.” – Frank Hartman
End of the Afghan Struggle • U.S. ended military aid to the Mujahedin and would not approve economic aid for rebuilding Afghanistan • "These things happened. They were glorious and they changed the world...and then we (expletive deleted) up the end game.” • Congressman Charlie Wilson
Afghanistan: Birthplace of al-Qaeda • Around 35,000 non-Afghan Muslims took up the struggle against the U.S.S.R. • Many were Islamic fundamentalists • Osama bin Laden, an Islamic fundamentalist from Saudi Arabia organized training camps for these Mujahedin • After the Soviets retreated many wanted to expand their operations to help other Islamic struggles around the world
“The Base” Begins • August 11, 1988 • Osama bin Laden hosts his first meeting for Mujahedin fighters from Afghanistan interested in taking up the Jihad globally • al-Qaeda, “The Base,” became “an organized Islamic faction, its goal is to lift the word of God, to make His religion victorious.”
Afghanistan: 1991-1994 • 1991: Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Sunni and Shia powers try to influence the fate of Afghanistan • 1992: Resistance closes in on Kabul and Najibullah falls from power. Rival militias vie for influence. • 1993:Mujahedin factions agree on formation of a government with ethnic Tajik, BurhanuddinRabbani, proclaimed president. • 1994: Factional contests continue and the Pashtun dominated Taliban emerge as major challenge to the Rabbani government.
Afghanistan: Birthplace of the Taliban • 1991: Afghanistan is in chaos following retreat of the Soviet Union • Some Mujahedin groups disperse, some organize • Taliban (“Students”) originated from a movement at religious schools (madrasahs) along the Afghanistan & Pakistan border • Opposed tyranny of local governments • 1994: Taliban capture Kandahar in their first major action
September 27, 1996 • Taliban seize control of Kabul and introduce hard line version of Islam, banning women from work. • Introduce Islamic punishments, which include stoning to death and amputations. • Rabbani flees to join anti-Taliban northern alliance.
1997 • Taliban recognized as legitimate rulers by Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. • Most other countries continue to regard Rabbani as head of state. • Taliban now control about two-thirds of country.
1998-1999 • 1998: Earthquakes kill thousands of people. • US launches missile strikes at suspected bases of militant Osama bin Laden, accused of bombing U.S. embassies in Africa. • 1999: U.N. imposes an air embargo and financial sanctions to force Afghanistan to hand over Osama bin Laden for trial.
2001 • January: UN imposes further sanctions on Taliban to force them to hand over Osama bin Laden. • March: Taliban blow up giant Buddha statues in defiance of international efforts to save them. • April: Mullah Mohammad Rabbani, the second most powerful Taliban leader after the supreme commander Mullah Mohammad Omar, dies of liver cancer. • May: Taliban order religious minorities to wear tags identifying themselves as non-Muslims, and Hindu women to veil themselves like other Afghan women. • September: Eight foreign aid workers on trial in the Supreme Court for promoting Christianity. This follows months of tension between Taliban and aid agencies.
2001 • September 9: Ahmad Shah Masood, legendary guerrilla and leader of the main opposition to the Taliban. • He is killed, apparently by assassins posing as journalists.
2001 • October: US, Britain launch air strikes against Afghanistan after Taliban refuse to hand over Osama bin Laden, held responsible for the September 11 attacks on America. • November: Opposition forces seize Mazar-e Sharif and within days march into Kabul and other key cities. The Taliban falls. • December 5: Afghan groups agree deal in Bonn for interim government. • December 7: Taliban finally give up last stronghold of Kandahar, but Mullah Omar remains at large.
2001 • December 22:Pashtun royalist Hamid Karzai is sworn in as head of a 30-member interim power-sharing government.
2002 • January: First contingent of foreign peacekeepers in place. • April: Former king Zahir Shah returns, but says he makes no claim to the throne. • May: UN Security Council extends mandate of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) until December 2002. Allied forces continue their military campaign to find remnants of al-Qaeda and Taliban forces in the south-east. • June:Loya Jirga, or grand council, elects Hamid Karzai as interim head of state. Karzai picks members of his administration which is to serve until 2004. • July: Vice-President Haji Abdul Qadir is assassinated by gunmen in Kabul.
2002 • September: Karzai narrowly escapes an assassination attempt in Kandahar, his home town. • December: President Karzai and Pakistani, Turkmen leaders sign deal to build gas pipeline through Afghanistan, carrying Turkmen gas to Pakistan.
2003 • NATO takes control of security in Kabul, its first-ever operational commitment outside Europe. • New constitution goes into effect. • U.S. shifts major focus to Iraq.
2004 • January: Grand assembly (Loya Jirga) adopts new constitution which provides for strong presidency. • March: Afghanistan secures $8.2bn (£4.5bn) in aid over three years. • September: Rocket fired at helicopter carrying President Karzai misses its target; it is the most serious attempt on his life since September 2002. • October-November: Presidential elections. Hamid Karzai is declared the winner, with 55% of the vote. • December: Karzai sworn in, amid tight security.
2005 • February: Several hundred people are killed in the harshest winter weather in a decade. • May: Details emerge of alleged prisoner abuse by U.S. forces at detention centers. New parliament established. • September: First parliamentary and provincial elections in more than 30 years. • December: New parliament holds its inaugural session.