Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Month: October 2018

Not Everybody’s Hero: The assassinated communist-turned-post-2001-parliamentary candidate Jabbar Qahraman

Michael Semple

The assassination of Kandahar’s police chief and strongman of southern Afghanistan Abdul Razeq in Kandahar on 18 October, along with the province’s NDS chief, and more members of the provincial leadership wounded soon overshadowed the killing of parliamentary candidate Abdul Jabbar Qahraman in neighbouring Helmand by a bomb one day earlier. Qahraman means “hero”, a […]

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داعش شاخه خراسان چیست؟


Hasht-e Sobh, 9 Aqrab 1397 (31 October 2018) In this portrait of ISKP by former Afghan deputy defence minister Tamim Asey, research by Kate Clark and Borhan Osman at AAN is used as sourcing, among others: نابع من در تشریح این پدید منابع باز بوده و از نوشته نویسنده‌گانی چون انتونیو گوستوزی، عثمان برهان، کیت […]

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Taliban Floggings Hint At New Crackdown On Smartphones


RFE/RL, 30 October 2018 AAN’s Obaid Ali is quoted here about the Taleban’s policy on smart phones: Obaid Ali, an expert on the Afghan insurgency at the Afghanistan Analysts Network, an independent think tank in Kabul, says the Taliban’s cultural commission banned all fighters from using smartphones in 2016 for security and religious reasons. Since […]

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The 2018 Election Observed (1) in Zurmat, Paktia: Real voting only in the district centre

Pakteen Khan Thomas Ruttig

Zurmat district in Paktia province is almost completely under Taleban control. The parliamentary elections were held there only on a tiny island of government control. Turnout was very low on the first election day and limited to the district centre – another example of Afghanistan’s emerging rural-urban voting divide. On day two, attempts of ballot stuffing […]

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The Release of Mullah Baradar: A contribution to the peace effort?

Kate Clark

The Taleban have confirmed to various media that Pakistan has released the most senior member of their movement in detention, Mullah Abdul Ghani, better known as Mullah Baradar (brother). He was arrested in 2010 and held ever since, apparently incommunicado and without charge or trial. Baradar was a founding member of the Taleban and a […]

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Donald Trump’s Desire to ‘Get the Hell Out’ of Afghanistan Amid Taliban Gains Could Lead to Catastrophe


Newsweek, 26 October 2018 A helpful analysis of public and not so public bleak US assessments of the situation in Afghanistan, although a bit US-centric, as usual (“After U.S. Special Forces and CIA teams ran the Taliban out of Kabul 17 years ago…”).

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Before Election Day Three: Looking at Kandahar’s upcoming vote

Martine van Bijlert

Tomorrow, on 27 October 2018, Kandahar will vote in the country’s parliamentary election – a week later than the rest of the country. The delay comes after the assassination of, among others, the province’s police chief and strongman Abdul Razeq on 18 October 2018. The IEC has tried to remedy the problems that plagued the […]

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Afghan Taliban founder Mullah Baradar ‘released’ by Pakistan

Thomas Ruttig

al-Jazeera, 25 October 2018 AAN’s Kate Clark is quoted here from earlier AAN analysis on the release of the former Taleban deputy leader: “Baradar is a highly experienced military commander and keen political strategist and played a major role in organising the insurgency in its formative years,” Kate Clark, member of the Afghanistan Analysts Network, wrote.

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Ballots and bullets in Afghanistan


Brookings, 23 October 2018 AAN’s Ali Adili’s piece about the use of biometrics in the Afghan elections is indirectly quoted and linked to in this analysis by Vanda Felbab-Brown: So, there was no way to guarantee that the process was free of fraud, allowing losers to denounce the results as the outcome of systemic fraud […]

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Women voters standing in the queue outside the polling stations to vote during the second day of the Afghan parliamentary elections on 21 October 2018. Photo Photo: Ali Yawar Adili

Election Day Two: A first hand account of the trials and chaos of second-day voting

Ali Yawar Adili

The parliamentary election that was finally held after a three and half year delay, was meant to end the extra-constitutionality of the legislature and boost the legitimacy of the state. New anti-fraud measures were put in place to ensure transparent elections, but they were poorly prepared and implemented. Now, after two days of voting, the […]

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