Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

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The Diplomat: A Decentralized Government Is Not the Answer to Afghanistan’s Problems

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The Diplomat, 29 February 2020

An interesting reply by an Afghan(?) Ph.D. candidate at the University of Toronto to another of many opinion pieces arguing that Afghanistan’s (indeed) centralised political system “hampers the development of an inclusive and legitimate government that is representative of local interests” – thereby equating regional warlords’ with ‘local’ interests. The author argues, for example, that

… for a state that is rising from the ashes of civil war to make concessions to the same individuals and groups who were responsible for starting the fire in the first place is nonsensical


… the present political instability is not an outcome produced by the mere existence of a nominal centralized government in Kabul; instead, it is the result of de facto decentralized governance practices

and – most importantly that “jihadism”, as espoused by the the former mujahedin leaders (or ‘local interests’) “is incongruent with democratization.”