The Taliban Use Violence Against Women as a Bargaining Chip

After the collapse of the Afghan government last August, the only significant challenge to the Taliban’s primitive totalitarianism was mounted by women in big cities — the capital Kabul, Mazar-e Sharif in the north, and Herat in the west, among others. The Taliban’s approach to women’s rights brought fears of violence that engulfed the country in the 1990s when the Taliban first won power. But Afghan society has undergone considerable...

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What the Taliban’s Constitution Means for Afghanistan

In a recent webinar titled, “Recognition of the Taliban as a Legitimate Government of Afghanistan,” a participant asked me which constitution is currently in place and the status of the Afghan Constitution from 2004? I couldn’t answer because the status of the constitution was still unclear. In August 2021, the Taliban came to power in Afghanistan through unconstitutional means. They initially did not establish a new government or issue a...

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The Pashtun-led Taliban Could Break Apart Both Afghanistan and Pakistan

More than a century ago, the Russians and the British played the Great Game for the control of Afghanistan. Immortalized in Rudyard Kipling’s “Kim,” this game defined three generations of soldiers, spies and diplomats. As the remarkable Rory Stewart records, the Great Game never ended. The Soviets and the Americans carried on where the Russians and the British left. Now, a new great game is about to begin. Is Afghanistan Going to Break Apart? READ...

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Is Afghanistan Going to Break Apart?

After the shambolic US withdrawal, Afghanistan faces an existential problem: Its very existence as a state is now in question. Most people forget that Afghanistan is a patchwork of disparate ethnic groups and remote villages. Unlike Germany or Japan, it is not and has never been a nation-state. Since the 1880s, Afghanistan has been a state based on a loose coalition of poorly governed provinces, forgotten villages and marginalized ethnic...

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Afghans Turn to Crypto Amid Crisis

Images from Afghanistan have flooded the news media this year as the US completed its chaotic withdrawal. Crowds of Afghans desperate to escape the Taliban takeover flocked to Kabul airport despite the risk of terrorist attacks. Just a fraction made it onto evacuation flights, and those who remain behind face increasing hardships, including food insecurity, growing violence and social restrictions, with women and minorities particularly affected. The Financial Sector Needs...

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After Afghanistan’s Fall to the Taliban, Will Kashmir Be Next?

In my first article of this three-part series, I made the case that the victory of the Taliban would radicalize Pakistan and increase its global nuclear threat. Notably, the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan is not only changing its eastern neighbor, but also fundamentally altering the geopolitics and balance of power in Central Asia. Most importantly, the most immediate consequences of the Taliban triumph will be felt by India in general...

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Afghanistan Is On the Verge of Disaster

The upheaval in Afghanistan was undoubtedly one of the most shocking events of the year. It will likely have fatal consequences for the Afghan people, neighboring countries and the international community. The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan is so devastating that it is impossible to predict the plight of civilians. What lies ahead for them is mass poverty, violent conflict and greater suffering. Reports indicate that the problems facing Afghanistan, particularly...

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