Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Month: June 2016

Afghanistan's flag hangs among the other members' flags at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Photo: Ehsan Qaane (2016)

The ICC’s Planned Visit to Afghanistan: Crimes, capacities and the willingness to prosecute

Ehsan Qaane

A delegation from the International Criminal Court (ICC) is planning to visit Afghanistan in 2016, but the government has hesitated about receiving it. It has established an inter-ministerial committee to ensure the Rome Statute, the treaty establishing the ICC, is finally translated into local languages and published in the official gazette so that the public […]

Rights and Freedoms Read more

Does Fighting Terrorists Abroad Keep Americans Safe at Home?

Martine van Bijlert

The National Interest, 29 June 2016 Article questioning whether American military operations overseas reduces the threat of domestic terrorism quotes from a recent dispatch by AAN’s Borhan Osman: One of the most recent examples of fighting “over there” backfiring, was in the recent killing of Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour by a U.S. drone on Pakistan’s […]

AAN in the Media Read more
Resistance leader Imam Shamil, an ethnic Avar and hero to many Chechens, surrenders to Russian forces in August 1859, (finding pictures of Chechens in Afghanistan is difficult) painting by Alexei Kivshenko, 1880

Chechens in Afghanistan 1: A Battlefield Myth That Will Not Die

Christian Bleuer

 In 2001, as the United States and other allied military forces attacked Taleban and al-Qaeda forces in Afghanistan, numerous soldiers, journalists and Afghans allied to the Americans relayed stories of a fearless and deadly opponent, incomparably worse than any other enemy: the Chechen. Such reports have never gone away, despite no Chechen having ever been […]

Regional Relations Read more

Afghanistan’s Taliban, Not Terrorists, Are Now Main Target of Heavy U.S. Drone Strikes

Martine van Bijlert

27 June 2016, A repost of an earlier article by the Bureau for Investigative Journalism on US drones that extensively quotes AAN’s Kate Clark.

AAN in the Media Read more

Mullah Haibatullah …From Courts to Leadership

Martine van Bijlert

27 June 2016, Asharq Al-Awsat (English edition) Brief backgrounder on Mullah Haibatullah, the new Taleban leader, quotes two analysts, including AAN’s Thomas Ruttig: “The new leader remained a mysterious figure and stood far from battles. Thomas Ruttig, analyst in one of the Afghan research centers, said that Haibatullah was close to Mullah Omar, and that the […]

AAN in the Media Read more

Afghanistan: Who are the Hazaras?

Martine van Bijlert

27 June 2016, Al Jazeera online AAN’s Thomas Ruttig is briefly quoted in Al Jazeera’s generic backgrounder on Hazaras in Afghanistan: “Hazaras have been systematically discriminated against by Pashtuns and others during the Afghan pre-war periods,” says Thomas Ruttig, co-director of the Afghanistan Analysts Network.

AAN in the Media Read more

Rosenöl statt Heroin: Zarter Neustart in Afghanistan

Martine van Bijlert

26 June 2016, Kleine Zeitung Article quotes AAN’s Jelena Bjelica on this year’s rise in opium production in Afghanistan: Es ist kein Zufall, dass es mehr Opium gibt, seit im Jahr 2006 die radikalislamischen Taliban ihr Comeback begonnen haben. “Da ist ein gut dokumentierter Zusammenhang zwischen Unsicherheit und Mohnanbau”, sagt Jelena Bjelica vom Rechercheinstitut Afghanistan […]

AAN in the Media Read more
Taleban propaganda films (with scenes such as the above of a gathering of fighters in Kunduz province pledging allegiance to Akhtar Mansur in August 2015) can been seen as evidence of how much the Taleban's decision-making mechanism, its organisational structure and communication strategies have evolved over the past two decades of its existence. (Photo Source: Taleban Propaganda Website 2015)

Taleban in Transition 2: Who is in charge now?

Borhan Osman

The new Taleban leader, Mullah Haibatullah, is being closely scrutinised to see if he will try to shape the goals and methods of the insurgency. The question is not just whether he wants to, but if he can. Gone are the days when the amir of the Taleban, by mere virtue of his position, had […]

War and Peace Read more

Confusion, Fighting In Northern Afghanistan


Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 20 June 2016 AAN’s Obaid Ali has participated in a radio round table organised by RFE/RL’s Central Asia programme Qishloq Avasi about the security situation in northern Afghanistan. A summary transcript and a link to the full podcast can be found here.

AAN in the Media Read more

Border clashes stir Pak-Afghan public emotions

Martine van Bijlert

20 Juni 2016, The Nation (Pakistan) AAN’s Borhan Osman is quoted paraphrased by The Nation on the highly emotive Pak-Afghan border clashes: “An Afghan political expert Said Borhan Osman told The Nation that recent border clashes and Pakistani officials’ threat of expel Afghan refugees have triggered a fresh episode of aggressive behaviour of the Afghan […]

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Podium discussion: “Afghanistan – safe country of origin?”

Thomas Ruttig

AAN’s Thomas Ruttig and  Bernd Mesovic, CEO of Germany’s largest pro-refugee organisation Pro Asyl, are on a podium tonight in the German city of Göttingen, discussing whether Afghanistan – as suggested by parts of the German government – is a “safe country of origin.” The event is part of a series on causes of the latest […]

Events Read more

Analysts: Taliban worried Islamic State could become serious political competitor

Martine van Bijlert

19 June 2016, Stars and Stripes This article on the competition between the Taleban and Daesh quotes several experts and commentators, including AAN’s Borhan Osman, saying: “It is difficult to imagine enthusiasm for (Islamic State) emerging among common Afghans,” said Borhan Osman of the Afghan Analysts Network. “However, tribal grievances towards the Taliban in communities […]

AAN in the Media Read more