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  • Author: Ibrahim Karatas
  • Publication Date: 03-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Policy Quarterly (TPQ)
  • Institution: Turkish Policy Quarterly (TPQ)
  • Abstract: When the United States was hit by al-Qaida's terrorist attack on 11 September 2001 (hereafter 9/11 attacks), not only Americans but the whole world was shocked: The world’s only superpower was attacked at home and had lost more than three thousand people. To take revenge for the attack as well as to prevent new ones, the Bush administration decided to invade both Afghanistan and Iraq, which they claimed were sheltering and supporting al-Qaida. Afghanistan was invaded on 7 October 2001 because the US wanted (1) to eliminate Osama bin Laden (the mastermind of 9/11) and al-Qaida; (2) to remove the Taliban group from power and bring stability to Afghanistan by creating a democratic and peaceful state.[1] The US Army subsequently invaded Iraq in 2003, claiming that Saddam Hussain was supporting terrorism and producing chemical weapons. There were also allegations that the Hussain regime was behind the 9/11 attacks, but it was never proven. The US eventually removed both Taliban and Saddam Hussain from power and captured Hussain, who was later judged and executed by the new Iraqi government on 30 December 2006. US special forces killed Laden on 2 May 2011. As of today, the US has killed its two archenemies and changed regimes allegedly supporting terrorism in both Afghanistan and Iraq, yet could not bring stability. What is more, the remaining US troops are preparing to leave the two countries. Neither Afghanistan nor Iraq is in better condition than the pre-invasion era as both states have failed, lack a strong authority, and cannot !ght terrorism. In Afghanistan, the Taliban was the enemy to be removed, however the US’s recent agreement with the organization has paved the way for re-control of the country by the group. On the other hand, Iraq has become a land of widespread terrorism, and the country is more divided than before, not mentioning Iranian in"uence on Baghdad. Based on the current situation, my arguments are that (1) the US is about to make the same mistake it did in Vietnam, and (2) Afghanistan and Iraq might again become the hub of terrorist organizations as well as regional rivalries. Although I do not approve of the US invasions, as Afghanistan and Iraq saw the worse with its invasion, these countries will face the worst with the US’s withdrawal.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Military Strategy, War on Terror, Foreign Interference
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Middle East, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Alexander B. Downes
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: The rapid-fire overthrow of the theocratic Taliban regime in Afghanistan (2001) and Saddam Hussein’s Baathist dictatorship in Iraq (2003) by the United States—and the disastrous aftermaths of those and other recent interventions (such as the ouster of Libya’s Muammar el-Qaddafi in 2011)— has sparked popular and scholarly interest in the causes and consequences of foreign-imposed regime change (FIRC). One of the enduring puzzles about FIRCs is that, as highlighted in Melissa Willard-Foster’s terrific book Toppling Foreign Governments, three-quarters of them are carried out by great powers against minor powers in situations of extreme power asymmetry. “Though this asymmetry of power makes an imposed change feasible,” writes Willard-Foster, a political scientist at the University of Vermont, “it should also make that change unnecessary” because “militarily weak leaders who are bereft of allies should back down when confronted by stronger states” (pp. 2–3). The 133 regime changes in Willard-Foster’s study, however, testify that the weak regularly defy the strong—and pay the price for it.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Government, Regime Change, Political Science
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, United States of America
  • Author: Seth G. Jones, Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, Jason Warner, Ryan O'Farrell, Heni Nsaibia, Ryan Cummings
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: CTC Sentinel
  • Institution: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point
  • Abstract: In this month’s feature article, Seth Jones examines the evolving threat posed by the Taliban in Afghanistan. “The Taliban is in many ways a different organization from the one that governed Afghanistan in the 1990s. Yet most of their leaders are nevertheless committed to an extreme interpretation of Islam that is not shared by many Afghans, an autocratic political system that eschews democracy, and the persistence of relations with terrorist groups like al-Qa`ida. These realities cast serious doubt about the possibility of a lasting peace agreement with the Afghan government in the near future,” he writes, adding that “without a peace deal, the further withdrawal of U.S. forces—as highlighted in the November 17, 2020, announcement to cut U.S. forces from 4,500 to 2,500 troops—will likely shift the balance of power in favor of the Taliban. With continuing support from Pakistan, Russia, Iran, and terrorist groups like al-Qa`ida, it is the view of the author that the Taliban would eventually overthrow the Afghan government in Kabul.” In a feature commentary, Hamish de Bretton-Gordon outlines the urgent action needed on biosecurity in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. He writes: “For years, the United States and many other countries have neglected biosecurity because policymakers have underestimated both the potential impact and likelihood of biological threats. COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on the planet and could be followed by outbreaks of even more dangerous viral diseases. Meanwhile, advances in synthetic biology are transforming the potential threat posed by engineered pathogens, creating growing concern over biological attacks and bioterror. Given the scale of the threat, biosecurity needs to be a top priority moving forward. Not only do efforts need to be stepped up to try to prevent the next pandemic (natural or engineered), but resilience needs to be built by developing early warning systems, the capacity to track outbreaks, and medical countermeasures, including ‘next generation’ vaccines.” He stresses that “winning public acceptance for public health measures will be imperative to tackling biological emergencies in the future.” Jason Warner, Ryan O’Farrell, Héni Nsaibia, and Ryan Cummings assess the evolution of the Islamic State threat across Africa. They write that “the annus horribilis Islamic State Central suffered in 2019, during which the group lost the last stretch of its ‘territorial caliphate’ in Iraq and Syria and its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed, does not appear to have had a discernible impact on the overall operational trajectory of the Islamic State threat in Africa” underscoring “that while connections were built up between Islamic State Central and its African affiliates—with the former providing, at times, some degree of strategic direction, coordination, and material assistance—the latter have historically evolved under their own steam and acted with a significant degree of autonomy.”
  • Topic: Terrorism, Biosecurity, Taliban, Counter-terrorism, Islamic State, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Africa, Middle East
  • Author: Lukasz Jurenczyk, Jildiz Nicharapova
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: AUSTRAL: Brazilian Journal of Strategy International Relations
  • Institution: Postgraduate Program in International Strategic Studies, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
  • Abstract: The main research question of the article is what attitude present the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the Collective Security Treaty Organization towards Afghanistan after 2014? A number of detailed questions were also put to help to answer the main question. The article consists of eight chapters. The first chapter discusses the methodological assumptions of the article. Chapter two covers literature review and theoretical framework of the article. The following chapters include an analysis of the approach to Afghanistan of the three indicated international organizations. The article ends with conclusion that contain the main theses.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, NATO, Diplomacy, International Cooperation, Military Strategy
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Europe, North Atlantic, Middle East, North America
  • Author: Ghulam Mustafa, Aamir Junaid, Rana Basam Khan, Imran Wakil
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Political Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The disastrous event of 9/11 changed the Political and Security dynamics of the world. The event of 9/11 provided a chance for India to enter into Afghanistan. Afghanistan attracts the world powers due to its strategic importance. Afghanistan is a gateway to the energy rich Central Asian Republics. India’s involvement in Afghanistan is quite realistic. India had never established cordial relations with the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. The event of 9/11 gave India a chance to establish cordial relations with the Afghan political government. India participated in the Bonn Conference and announced its support for the people of Afghanistan in the reconstruction of the country. India enjoyed its best relations with the governments of Hamid Karzai and Ashraf Ghani in Kabul. India enhanced its ties with Iran to secure its interest in Afghanistan and to counter Pakistan. India and Iran have some common interests in Afghanistan. New Delhi has invested a big amount in various sectors in Afghanistan to enhance its influence in Afghan society. India has worked hard to facilitate Afghan Nationals to boost its soft power. India now influences the internal politics of Afghanistan. The world considers India a major market in South Asia. India’s presence in Afghanistan has always been a source of worry for Pakistan. Pakistan considers India’s presence in Afghanistan a threat to its National Security. Pakistan thinks India should work for the betterment of Afghan people but she should avoid using Afghan soil against Pakistan. Pakistan has already suffered a lot due to the disturbance in Afghanistan. Peaceful Afghanistan is in the favor of South Asia and for the Global Powers. This paper focuses on the Indian presence in Afghanistan and India’s role to bring peace in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Taliban, Negotiation, Peace
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia, India
  • Author: Shahid Ahmed Afridi, Marium Fatima
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Political Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: US military intervention in Afghanistan was decisive and forceful, however, the Taliban’s insurgency inevitably transformed U.S. military doctrine and strategy from conventional military intervention into Counterinsurgency’s kinetic and non-kinetic operations. U.S. strategic and operational methodology despite exhausting all possibilities; troops’ surge, air dominance/surveillance, non-kinetic peace building operations, failed to dislodge the threat of Taliban violence. An effort is made to identify the underlying factors contributory to the failure of the U.S. strategy, tactics and other challenges faced despite having unparalleled military superiority. This paper further probes the U.S. military strategic repositioning, social structure with the warlords and critically examines how the conflict drifted from intervention into Counterinsurgency irregular warfare.
  • Topic: Counterinsurgency, Humanitarian Intervention, Military Intervention, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, South Asia, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Muhammad Najam Ud din Farani
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Political Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: Afghan refugees in Pakistan are a classical example of refugee-war nexus. They have been historically conditioned by wars and internal conflicts inside Afghanistan. The conflict within Afghanistan which has historically conditioned Afghan refugees has spanned for more than four decades. This study is an attempt to contextualize history, demographics, institutes, national policy and different factors that have conditioned the identity of Pakistani Afghan refugee community. This study also attempt to explore different perspectives on the identity of Afghan refugee community inside Pakistan.
  • Topic: Refugees, Conflict, 9/11, Identity, Soviet Union
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia
  • Author: Dayyab Gillani
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Political Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: This paper analyzes the ongoing democratization process in Iraq and Afghanistan. It examines the political institutions established in both countries by using the comparative method of analysis. The paper shows that both Iraq and Afghanistan are primarily plural societies and are divided along sectarian and ethnic lines. Drawing from the academic literature, the paper proposes that consociational democracy is the best democratic alternative for plural/divided societies. The paper mainly argues that even though Iraq and Afghanistan share somewhat similar demographic characteristics, their newly installed democratic institutions reveal a sharp contrast. It investigates the reasons for this dissimilar choice of political institutions and proposes that the democratic institutions in both the countries must be formulated in line with the principles of consociational democracy.
  • Topic: Democratization, Democracy, Constitution, Pluralism
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Rahman Ullah
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Review of Human Rights
  • Institution: Society of Social Science Academics (SSSA)
  • Abstract: In this focus essay I discuss how the Taliban understand coronavirus in Afghanistan. I make the point that they see it as a political event of significance for establishing their legitimacy, as well as to press the US and the Afghan government to come to their terms in the War on Terrorism.
  • Topic: Prisons/Penal Systems, Taliban, War on Terror, Coronavirus, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, South Asia
  • Author: Aisha Ahmad
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Security
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: In recent years, jihadists across the world have transformed their gendered violence, shocking the world by breaking from prior taboos and even celebrating abuses that they had previously prohibited. This behavior is surprising because jihadists represent a class of insurgents that are deeply bound by rules and norms. For jihadists, deviating from established Islamist doctrines is no easy feat. What then explains these sudden transformations in the rules and norms governing jihadist violence? An inductive investigation of contemporary jihadist violence in Pakistan and Nigeria reveals a new theory of jihadist normative evolution. Data from these cases show that dramatic changes in jihadist violence occur when an external trigger creates an expanded political space for jihadist entrepreneurs to do away with normative constraints on socially prohibited types of violence. As these jihadist leaders capitalize on the triggers, they are able to encourage a re-socialization process within their ranks, resulting in the erosion of previously held taboos, the adoption of proscribed behaviors, and the emergence of toxic new norms.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Gender Issues, Islam, Terrorism, Women, Gender Based Violence
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Middle East, West Asia