Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Month: July 2011

Death of an Uruzgan Journalist

Susanne Schmeidl

Last Thursday, 28 July, the capital of the southern province of Uruzgan saw the most devastating Taleban attack so far this year. Although it did not achieve its declared aim, to kill local strongmen Matiullah, and the far less influential governor Omar Sherzad and his deputy Khodai Rahim, a lot of civilians were killed. Susanne […]

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Malalai’s wayward sisters


Being a woman criminal in Afghanistan may not lead to wide public recognition as it does in neighbouring India, but Afghan ladies actually have a very respectable tradition of being ‘bandit queens’. In the event of a newly reported instance of this type, AAN’s archival team looks at a couple of memorable past characters. A […]

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Guest Blog: Why a Breakthrough is Unlikely at Bonn 2

Abbas Daiyar

On 5 December, on the tenth anniversary of the Bonn Agreement, Germany will host the Bonn II conference. There are exaggerated views in the Afghan public about what the conference is trying to achieve, that – with the ‘talks about talks’ continuing – it might even embark on setting up a new composition of power […]

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Women and Reconciliation: What are the Concerns?

Sari Kouvo

Peace is not made with friends, it is made with enemies. Peace deals are then about finding a minimum common ground and making compromises: It comes at a cost, but the price is not necessarily equal for everybody. Sari Kouvo, AAN Senior Analyst, discusses some of the key themes that came up in her meetings […]

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Civilian Casualties 2: Taleban claims to protect civilians laid bare

Kate Clark

Accusations against the Taleban are becoming more pointed: their indiscriminate use of IEDs is a war crime, said UNAMA in its most recent mid-year report on civilian casualties, as well as violating a ban on land-mines made by Mulla Omar in 1998. The Taleban continues to insist its hands are clean, but, as AAN Senior […]

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Reading newspapers on an airplane (2)

Thomas Ruttig

After another longer stay in Kabul, reading newspapers on an airplane brings one back into the news mainstream – because, while in Afghanistan, you simply are overwhelmed by events there and develop some kind of tunnel vision. This time, it was particularly dreadful: with the series of political assassinations, both in northern and southern Afghanistan, […]

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Parliament Odyssey: A special appeal court to replace the Special Court?

Gran Hewad

The Wolesi Jirga should have gone into its summer recess and, by now, come back again. But it delayed the recess, so that MPs could stand against the decision on 26 June by the Special Court to exclude 62 MPs whose legitimacy it questioned. Two of the 62 have appealed to the Special Court’s appeal […]

Political Landscape Read more

The Enteqal Seven (6): What is left to transition in Kabul

Fabrizio Foschini

Against the blazing red background of increasingly brazen attacks carried out inside the capital, Kabul province moves towards the imminent transition of security. How this is going to affect the situation in the province, as the city and most of the districts have already been transitioned de facto in 2008-09, is not clear. However, it […]

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Civilian Casualties 1: Progress in the war or a ‘perpetually escalating stalemate’?

Kate Clark

General Petraeus has handed over command of ISAF and US forces in Afghanistan, with talk of progress – albeit fragile and with ‘tough times’ ahead. His confidence was belied by reports or statements on the human cost of the war from three respected international institutions working in Afghanistan over the past week: ICRC said, ‘insecurity […]

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At Kabul airport, exodus of U.S. aid goes on


Washington Post, 20 July 2011 ‘More than a year after The Washington Post first disclosed American concerns about the airport, a report released Wednesday by the U.S. special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction concludes that attempts to choke off the exodus of cash have been plagued by a hard-to-fathom set of obstacles.The installation of currency-counting […]

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Better late than never: 14 more ex-Taleban delisted

Thomas Ruttig

The UNSC sanctions committee has taken 14 more former Taleban off the black list. Among them are three dead men, four Higher Peace Council (HPC) members, seven former deputy ministers and a former ambassador (categories overlap), the president of the Taleban Academy of Sciences and four low-ranking, former Taleban diplomats. AAN’s Senior Analyst Thomas Ruttig […]

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Ghorband – A Valley Once Friendly

Thomas Ruttig

In May, we have been reporting about the deteriorating security situation in Eastern Afghanistan. There, it appears, an ‘insurgency corridor’ has been emerging, through which insurgents ‘will be able to move unhindered from the Pakistani border to Laghman, and from there into Kapisa and Kabul provinces’*. The killing of the Bamian Provincial Council (PC) chairman […]

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