Although few in the United States dare say it, the U.
Bush—was a wartime president. With the situation in Iraq continuing to improve and the target date for ending U. But the Soviet presence touched off a nationwide rebellion by Islamist fighters, who won extensive covert backing from PakistanSaudi Arabiaand the United States and who were joined in their fight by foreign volunteers.
The guerrilla war against the Soviet forces led to their departure a decade later see Afghan War. In the void, civil war reigned, with the Islamist fighters—known as the mujahideen —battling first to oust the Soviet-backed government and then turning their guns on each other.
A Soviet armoured vehicle rolling past a group of civilians during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, December On September 9 of that year, al-Qaeda hit men carried out the assassination of famed mujahideen leader Ahmad Shah Masoudwho at the time was leading the Northern Alliance a loose coalition of mujahideen militias that maintained control of a small section of northern Afghanistan as it battled the Taliban and who had unsuccessfully sought greater U.
The September 11 attacks and the U. The plot had been hatched by al-Qaeda, and some of the 19 hijackers had trained in Afghanistan. In the aftermath of the attacks, the administration of U.
Bush coalesced around a strategy of first ousting the Taliban from Afghanistan and dismantling al-Qaeda, though others contemplated actions in Iraq, including long-standing plans for toppling Pres. Pentagon officials were especially concerned that the United States not be drawn into a protracted occupation of Afghanistan, as had occurred with the Soviets more than two decades prior.
The Americans also teamed with anti-Taliban Pashtuns in southern Afghanistan, including a little-known tribal leader named Hamid Karzai. The CIA team was soon joined by U. They also helped coordinate targeting for the air campaign, which began on October 7,with U.
In late October, Northern Alliance forces began to overtake a series of towns formerly held by the Taliban. The forces worked with U. It had been besieged by a force led by Karzai that moved in from the north and one commanded by Gul Agha Sherzai that advanced from the south; both operated with heavy assistance from the United States.
With behind-the-scenes maneuvering by the United States, Karzai was selected to lead the country on an interim basis.
An intensive manhunt for Omar, bin Ladenand al-Qaeda deputy chief Ayman al-Zawahiri was undertaken. Prior to the killing of bin Laden by U. But bin Laden was thought to have managed to have slipped into Pakistan with the help of Afghan and Pakistani forces that were supposedly helping the Americans.
Critics later questioned why the U. Indeed, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry made this criticism repeatedly during the general election campaign. One of the final major battles of the first phase of the war came in March with Operation Anaconda in the eastern province of Paktia, which involved U.
Iraq takes centre stage With the ouster of the Taliban and al-Qaeda, the international focus shifted to reconstruction and nation-building efforts in Afghanistan. But from the start, development efforts in Afghanistan were inadequately funded, as attention had turned among U.
More than half the money went to training and equipping Afghan security forces, and the remainder represented a fraction of the amount that experts said would be required to develop a country that had consistently ranked near the bottom of global human development indices.
The aid program was also bedeviled by waste and by confusion over whether civilian or military authorities had responsibility for leading education, health, agriculture, and other development projects. Despite military commitments from dozens of U. The United States consistently represented the largest foreign force in Afghanistan, and it bore the heaviest losses.
By spring more than 1, U. More than 20 other countries also lost troops during the war, though many—such as Germany and Italy—chose to focus their forces in the north and the west, where the insurgency was less potent. On May 1,U. The first democratic Afghan elections since the fall of the Taliban were held on October 9,with approximately 80 percent of registered voters turning out to give Karzai a full five-year term as president.
Parliamentary elections were staged a year later, with dozens of women claiming seats set aside for them to ensure gender diversity. Navy Despite vast powers under the constitution, Karzai was widely regarded as a weak leader who grew increasingly isolated as the war progressed.
He survived several assassination attempts—including a September rocket attack that nearly struck a helicopter he was riding in—and security concerns kept him largely confined to the presidential palace in Kabul.
Karzai, HamidHamid Karzai, The Rise of the Taliban and Islamic Fundamentalism Afghanistan is one of the poorest countries in the world.
In , the last year for which such statistics exist, the . after its intervention in Afghanistan. After the Taliban’s ‘defeat’ in , their resurgence was invited by the worst period in the Afghan history after the Soviet withdrawal.
The entire country was in the hold of numerous The Taliban War, Religion, and the New Order in Afghanistan,(Karachi: Oxford University press, ), p. The Taliban ideology calling for a radically austere, ascetic, vision of Islam began to spread in the s during the Soviet occupation, taking root in the Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan.
The Taliban’s ideological movement stood in contrast to what the group perceived as corruption and extravagance prevalent among the Mujahedeen fighters.
This article covers the Afghan history between the Taliban's conquest of Kabul and their establishing of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan on 27 September , and the U.S.
and U.K. invasion of Afghanistan on 7 October a period that was part of the Afghan civil war that had started in , and also part of the war (in wider sense) in Afghanistan that had started in For many Americans it came completely out of the blue, but in the context of the Soviet-Afghan War things begin to make a little more sense.
The plot was said to have been hatched out of the extremist camps in Afghanistan and Pakistan left behind after the Soviet war, with oversight from Osama Bin . In the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan to defend an unstable Stalinist client state.
As part of its Cold War against “communism” (in reality Stalinism), the US organized a counter-revolutionary war in Afghanistan to drive out the USSR.