War & Peace

Security Forces Spread Thin: An update from contested Faryab province

On the day after the Afghan vote, nearly unnoticed in the election frenzy, Faryab province experienced yet another complex Taleban attack. Taleban fighters stormed large parts of Qaisar district, and ruled the area for almost three weeks. The Afghan National Police (ANP) and Afghan Local Police (ALP) retreated immediately, outnumbered and faced with more and […]

Death in Aleppo: A group of Afghan fighters located in Syria

Are Afghans fighting in the war in Syria? There have been a few reports to that effect in the international news media over the past months, detailing recruitment efforts mainly by the Iranian government among Hazaras in order to bolster the Assad regime’s manpower. However, there has never been evidence of Afghan fighters actually present in […]

Elections and Foreigners: An analysis of recent Taleban violence

The Taleban have again warned Afghans not to take part in Saturday’s elections, saying they would be attacking election centres and targeting “all parts of the country”. Earlier they warned they would be using “all force” at their disposal to disrupt the “upcoming sham elections”. Kabul has seen two ‘spectacular’ attacks against election-related targets in the […]

A Sad Nawruz: Violence risks tainting an important Afghan holiday

AAN had wanted to wake up on a Friday, post its piece about Nawruz special food traditions, and enjoy the quiet of one of the last weekends before elections and more hectic days of work. That this was a delusion became clear as details about yesterday’s attack at Kabul’s Serena hotel started to emerge. On […]

Flying after 2014: Which aircraft for the Afghan Air Force?

The Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) have been mentored and trained by a largely United States force that is used to relying heavily on air support, a habit they have transferred to the Afghans. Until now, international air support has given Afghan forces an edge over the insurgency, but this year that support will be […]

The Future of Peace Talks: What would make a breakthrough possible?

Attempts last year to reconcile the Taleban ended where they had started a year before – stuck in stalemate. Two major developments this year, however, could affect the peace process. The departure of President Hamid Karzai and accession of a new leader in the spring provides an opportunity for rebooting the peace process. At best, […]

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