Afghanistan Modern History

Afghanistan Modern History

From the fall of Sahir Shah to the seizure of power by the communists

The overthrow of Sahir Shah by a military coup by his cousin M. Daud Khan on July 17, 1973 ushered in a new phase. Daud Khan proclaimed the republic and appointed himself head of state (1973-78). His policy was directed against the traditional and Islamist elites, which were covered with waves of arrests and persecution. When he took action against communist forces that had initially supported him and tried to evade Soviet influence, the communist-oriented Democratic People’s Party (DVPA, founded in 1965) staged a coup on April 27, 1978 without the knowledge of the Soviet Union (assassination of Daud Khan) and proclaimed the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan. According to allcitycodes, Afghanistan is a country in southern Asia.

Under the chairman of the Revolutionary Council and Prime Minister N. M. Taraki, the new leadership, which included B. Karmal and H. Amin as Deputy Prime Ministers, established a communist system. The radically implemented domestic political program to eliminate the existing economic and social structures (above all land reform, literacy campaigns, in addition the abolition of the bride price, etc.) as well as harsh repression against any opposition triggered nationwide resistance; Internal disputes in the DVPA (rivalries between the »Khalq« and the »Parcham« groups) weakened the regime further. In September 1979, Amin arrested, who had taken over the office of prime minister six months earlier and also commanded the security forces, took power and had Taraki murdered in October 1979. Amin established a reign of terror that increased resistance and brought the regime to the brink of collapse in late 1979.

The mujahideen civil war

In February 1989 Najibullah declared a state of emergency in the country (until May 1990) and constituted a military council. On February 23, 1989, the seven Sunni Mujahideen groups formed a counter-government in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, with Sibghatullah Mojaddedi (* 1922 or 1925) as president. On March 6, 1990, a coup attempt by Defense Minister Shahnawaz Tanai against Najibullah failed. Through an amendment to the constitution in May 1990, Afghanistan finally broke away from the socialist path of development (anchoring Islamic principles). The DVPA, which was transformed into the Hizb-i Watan (Fatherland Party) in 1987, gave up its monopoly of power. After Russia and the USA stopped delivering arms to the civil war parties on January 1, 1992, and the unsuccessful peace offers by the government in Kabul, the government came under increasing military pressure from the Mujahideen, who until spring 1992 militarily controlled most of Afghanistan brought. Finally, since the Najibullah regime was no longer able to pay its own government troops, the Uzbek general Abdul Raschid Dostum (Dostam), who was close to the government, allied himself with the Mujahedin commander in March 1992 A. Shah Massoud .

On April 16, 1992, Najibullah was overthrown by generals of the government army; he found asylum in the UN agency. On April 25, 1992, Mujahideen troops occupied the capital Kabul. The assumption of power by a council of the Mujahideen chaired by Mojaddedi on April 28, 1992 and the proclamation of an Islamic Republic of Afghanistan was followed in May 1992 by the introduction of Islamic laws. On June 28, 1992, Mojaddedi gave power to the leadership council (body of chairmen of the most powerful mujahideen groups), which appointed B. Rabbani as transitional president for the next three months; on December 30, 1992, the Islamic State of Afghanistan was proclaimed and Rabbani elected president for two years at a large shura against the protests of various mujahideen groups.

These political events were overshadowed by the fact that the Mujahideen parties had fought for control of the city and completely destroyed it since the capture of Kabul. In particular, the Pashtun G. Hekmatyar, who had long been supported by the USA and Pakistan, fought heavy fighting with Ahmed Shah Massud, the most important commander of the Mujahideen government. A peace agreement between the rival Mujahedin, the Hekmatyar, concluded on March 7, 1993 through the mediation of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia in Islamabad made prime minister could not end the fighting. The civil war between the rival mujahideen groups, in the course of which the military-political alliances changed several times, led to the breakup of the country into several war principalities, in which regional, ethnic and tribal affiliations played a decisive role. While the Tajiks Rabbani and Massud controlled the northeast and Kabul, the Uzbek Dostum established its own sphere of power in northern Afghanistan (center Mazar-e Sharif). Ismail Khan (* 1946), an ally of Rabbani, controlled western Afghanistan, while in central Afghanistan various Hazara factions that had officially merged to form the Hizb-i Wahdat (Islamic Unity Party) vied for power. In the south and east of the country, the Pashtun areas, the tribes regained importance and the power constellations changed from valley to valley.

The Afghanistan and Tajikistan conflicts also dovetailed in the mid-1990s. Afghan mujahideen, especially Massoud, supported the Islamic opposition in the Tajik civil war that broke out in 1992; the Tajik rebels used northern Afghanistan as a retreat and base of operations. Thousands of people temporarily fled to Afghanistan before the civil war in Tajikistan. In addition, since the early 1990s, Islamic militants who had fought in the Afghan war turned to other trouble spots such as Algeria, Bosnia, Kashmir and Chechnya.

Afghanistan Modern History