Afghanistan Analysts Network – Dari Pashto

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AAN Thematic Dossiers

The Takhar attack: Targeted killings and the parallel worlds of US intelligence and Afghanistan

Guests Kate Clark

The targeted killing of Osama Bin Laden has given a boost to those in the US who believe this is also an effective strategy to defeat – or at least degrade – the Taleban in Afghanistan. This new AAN thematic report, by senior analyst Kate Clark, warns against this strategy, stressing that the legality of […]

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The Insurgents of the Afghan North

Antonio Giustozzi Christoph Reuter Guests

In this report Antonio Giustozzi and Christoph Reuter describe the rise of the Taleban in northern Afghanistan. They discuss their recruitment and shadow administration, the conduct of the Afghan government, the effects of ISAF’s ‘capture-and-kill campaign’ and how all of this together contributes to a very unstable status quo. Until recently, the belief was widespread […]

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Afghanistan’s Drug Career: from War to Drug Economy

citha-d-maas Guests Priye Ranjan Keolyar

This new AAN thematic report (with SWP Berlin) by German scholar Citha D. Maass looks into the beginnings and the evolution of drug production in Afghanistan during its three decades-long war. Starting with the Western-supported anti-Soviet jihad in 1979, drug production became a major base for the country’s war economy. After the fall of the […]

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Pashtunwali – tribal life and behaviour among the Pashtuns

Guests Lutz Rzehak

‘Doing Pashto: Pashtunwali as the ideal of honourable behaviour and tribal life among the Pashtuns’ – this new thematic report by Lutz Rzehak provides an overview about the way of life of the Pashtuns, often called Pashtunwali. The term features prominently when civilian and military actors in Afghanistan discuss ways of engaging the civilian population […]

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Who Controls the Vote? Afghanistan’s Evolving Elections

Martine van Bijlert

AAN’s latest report, by Martine van Bijlert, provides the first in-depth analysis of the 2009 provincial council elections and presents important clues on what the parliamentary vote on 18 September will look like. It argues that, contrary to what some internationals hope, the upcoming vote will again be messy, fiercely contested and manipulated at all […]

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How Tribal Are the Taleban? Afghanistan’s Largest Insurgent Movement between its Tribal Roots and Islamist Ideology

Thomas Ruttig

The Taleban in Afghanistan should be treated as a primarily political movement with political aims, and not as a tribal one, concludes Thomas Ruttig, author of the new report ‘How Tribal Are the Taleban? Afghanistan’s Largest Insurgent Movement between Tribal Roots and Islamist Ideology,’ published today by AAN. Today’s Taleban movement has a double nature, […]

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Local Defence in Afghanistan: A Review of Government-backed Initiatives

Guests Mathieu Lefevre

In this latest AAN report, Mathieu Lefèvre unpacks the myths about local defense initiatives in Afghanistan. His analysis of three local defense initiatives shows the contradictions in the claimed successes and points at possible long-term security challenges posed by these initiatives. In this report, Mathieu Lefèvre analyses three local defense initiatives in Afghanistan: The Afghanistan […]

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Nation-Building Is Not for All; The Politics of Education

Antonio Giustozzi Guests

In this AAN report Afghanistan scholar Antonio Giustozzi explores the deeply political and contentious history of education in Afghanistan. The report discusses the development of state education over the last 90 years in the context of nation-building, and touches on a series of crucial issues, including the role of religion; the priority of government concerns […]

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Two Interventions: Comparing Soviet and US-led state-building in Afghanistan

Guests martin-kipping Priye Ranjan Keolyar

Although there is a broad consensus that building a capable and legitimate state is key to success in Afghanistan, there has been little systematic comparison between the current US-led intervention and the Soviet state-building intervention that took place between 1979 and 1989. This paper aims to remedy that by analysing the trajectories of both interventions. […]

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How to Win an Afghan Election; Perceptions and Practices

Martine van Bijlert

In its second report the Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) holds the magnifying glass to the Afghan elections, exploring the impact of high-level deals, local-level decision-making processes, and electoral manipulation. The author, Martine van Bijlert, used her extensive in-country experience, contacts and language skills to provide a detailed analysis of the deal-making and politicking that underlie […]

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The Other Side. Dimensions of the Afghan Insurgency: Causes, Actors – and Approaches to Talks

Thomas Ruttig

In this first Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) report “The Other Side: Dimensions of the Afghan Insurgency. Causes, Actors and Approaches to Talks”, author Thomas Ruttig – an Afghanistan expert working on and in the country since 25 years – seeks to unpack the complexities of the insurgency in Afghanistan and develop a sophisticated approach to […]

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