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It describes the formation of the U. Central Command, their force structure and the network of U. The role of pro-Western countries in the wider region, in particular Pakistan, Egypt, Jordan, and Israel, in the formulation of strategy is discussed in detail, along with a more general assessment of the achievements and failures of U. In light of the persistent struggle for peace within the Middle East, this is a timely reissue, which will be of great interest to students researching U. The Return of Marco Polo's World.

The Soviet—Afghan War — The Ultimate Weapon is No Weapon. The Russian Military and the Georgia War: Nuclear Weapons and Coercive Diplomacy. Allied Participation in Operation Iraqi Freedom: A History of Innovation: How the West Lost Its Way. Rogue States and Nuclear Outlaws. Nasser and the Missile Age in the Middle East.

Military Industry and Regional Defense Policy. The United States Army in Afghanistan: Stopping Mass Killings in Africa: Fighting for Peace in Somalia. Libya's Operation Odyssey Dawn: Building Security in the Persian Gulf. Retreat and its Consequences. Peacekeeping in South Sudan. The Tuaregs and the Rebellion in Mali. America's Black Air Pioneers, Routledge Handbook of Naval Strategy and Security. An Interview with Generals Curtis E.

Burchinal, and Jack J. Plays, Novels, Articles, Letters and Essays: Coalition Challenges in Afghanistan. We Have Not Been Moved. A Concise History of the U. Russia's Security and the War on Terror. Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding. How to Resolve Conflict.

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Policies and Practices of the U. The New Hollywood Historical Film. Ethics and Global Security. Military Integration after Civil Wars. Victory Has a Thousand Fathers. In Pursuit of Peace in Israel and Palestine. National, International, and Human Security. Religion and Post-Conflict Statebuilding. They are sometimes alleged to have been part of the radical communist faction, Settam-e-Melli lit. The government refused categorically to negotiate with the militants, in spite of the U. Dubs was held in Room of the Kabul Hotel, where the United States sent its embassy and diplomatic staff to negotiate with the communist faction.

When negotiations stalled, there was an intense exchange of fire after Russian advisers ordered an assault. Ambassador Adolph Dubs was caught in the crossfire, leading to his death. In the mids, Pakistani intelligence officials began privately lobbying the U. At a March 30 meeting, U. Department of Defense representative Walter B. Slocombe "asked if there was value in keeping the Afghan insurgency going, 'sucking the Soviets into a Vietnamese quagmire?

The risk was that a substantial U. In May , U. A former Pakistani military official claimed that he personally introduced a CIA official to Gulbuddin Hekmatyar that month Freedom of Information Act requests for records describing these meetings have been denied. The full significance of the U. Some assert that it directly, and even deliberately, provoked the Soviets to send in troops. Given this evidence and the enormous political and security costs that the invasion imposed on the Carter administration, any claim that Brzezinski lured the Soviets into Afghanistan warrants deep skepticism.

Only after the Soviet invasion did some advocate making the Soviets 'bleed' in their own Vietnam. Harrison that the U. The Afghan government, having secured a treaty in December that allowed them to call on Soviet forces, repeatedly requested the introduction of troops in Afghanistan in the spring and summer of They requested Soviet troops to provide security and to assist in the fight against the mujaheddin rebels.

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After the killing of Soviet technicians in Herat by rioting mobs, the Soviet government sold several Mi helicopters to the Afghan military, and increased the number of military advisers in country to 3, In response to this request, an airborne battalion, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel A.

Lomakin, arrived at the Bagram Air Base on July 7. They arrived without their combat gear, disguised as technical specialists. They were the personal bodyguards for President Taraki. The paratroopers were directly subordinate to the senior Soviet military advisor and did not interfere in Afghan politics. Several leading politicians at the time such as Alexei Kosygin and Andrei Gromyko were against intervention. After a month, the Afghan requests were no longer for individual crews and subunits, but for regiments and larger units.

In July, the Afghan government requested that two motorized rifle divisions be sent to Afghanistan. The following day, they requested an airborne division in addition to the earlier requests. They repeated these requests and variants to these requests over the following months right up to December However, the Soviet government was in no hurry to grant them. Following his initial coup against and killing of President Taraki , the KGB station in Kabul warned Moscow that Amin's leadership would lead to "harsh repressions, and as a result, the activation and consolidation of the opposition.

In late April , the committee reported that Amin was purging his opponents, including Soviet loyalists, that his loyalty to Moscow was in question and that he was seeking diplomatic links with Pakistan and possibly the People's Republic of China which at the time had poor relations with the Soviet Union. Of specific concern were Amin's secret meetings with the U. Bruce Amstutz, which, while never amounting to any agreement between Amin and the United States, sowed suspicion in the Kremlin. Information obtained by the KGB from its agents in Kabul provided the last arguments to eliminate Amin. The latter, however, is still disputed with Amin repeatedly demonstrating friendliness toward the various delegates of the Soviet Union who would arrive in Afghanistan.

Soviet General Vasily Zaplatin , a political advisor of Premier Brezhnev at the time, claimed that four of President Taraki's ministers were responsible for the destabilization. However, Zaplatin failed to emphasize this in discussions and was not heard. Conservatives believe that this process was reflective of growing Soviet political influence in the world and that Soviet intervention in Afghanistan in December was an attempt to preserve, stabilize and militarily intervene on behalf of the communist regime there and thus, their own political standing.

During meetings between President Taraki and Soviet leaders in March , the Soviets promised political support and to send military equipment and technical specialists, but upon repeated requests by Taraki for direct Soviet intervention, the leadership adamantly opposed him; reasons included that they would be met with "bitter resentment" from the Afghan people, that intervening in another country's civil war would hand a propaganda victory to their opponents, and Afghanistan's overall inconsequential weight in international affairs, in essence realizing they had little to gain by taking over a country with a poor economy, unstable government, and population hostile to outsiders.

However, as the situation continued to deteriorate from May—December , Moscow changed its mind on dispatching Soviet troops. On October 31, Soviet informants to the Afghan Armed Forces who were under orders from the inner circle of advisors under Soviet president Brezhnev, relayed information for them to undergo maintenance cycles for their tanks and other crucial equipment. Meanwhile, telecommunications links to areas outside of Kabul were severed, isolating the capital.

With a deteriorating security situation, large numbers of Soviet Airborne Forces joined stationed ground troops and began to land in Kabul on December Simultaneously, Amin moved the offices of the president to the Tajbeg Palace , believing this location to be more secure from possible threats. According to Colonel General Tukharinov and Merimsky, Amin was fully informed of the military movements, having requested Soviet military assistance to northern Afghanistan on December That operation began at Simultaneously, other objectives were occupied e.

The operation was fully complete by the morning of December 28, According to the Soviet Politburo they were complying with the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Good Neighborliness and Amin had been "executed by a tribunal for his crimes" by the Afghan Revolutionary Central Committee.

That committee then elected as head of government former Deputy Prime Minister Babrak Karmal , who had been demoted to the relatively insignificant post of ambassador to Czechoslovakia following the Khalq takeover, and announced that it had requested Soviet military assistance. Soviet ground forces, under the command of Marshal Sergei Sokolov , entered Afghanistan from the north on December In the morning, the rd Guards 'Vitebsk' Airborne Division landed at the airport at Bagram and the deployment of Soviet troops in Afghanistan was underway.

Later on the st and 68th Motor Rifle Divisions also entered the country, along with other smaller units. In the second week alone, Soviet aircraft had made a total of 4, flights into Kabul. Foreign ministers from 34 Islamic nations adopted a resolution which condemned the Soviet intervention and demanded "the immediate, urgent and unconditional withdrawal of Soviet troops" from the Muslim nation of Afghanistan.

Weapons supplies were made available through numerous countries; the United States purchased all of Israel's captured Soviet weapons clandestinely, and then funnelled the weapons to the Mujahideen, while Egypt upgraded their own army's weapons, and sent the older weapons to the militants, Turkey sold their World War II stockpiles to the warlords, and the British and Swiss provided Blowpipe missiles and Oerlikon anti-aircraft guns respectively, after they were found to be poor models for their own forces. The first phase began with the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan and their first battles with various opposition groups.

However, the presence of Soviet troops did not have the desired effect of pacifying the country. On the contrary, it exacerbated a nationalistic feeling, causing the rebellion to spread further. These forces mostly fought in the open, and Soviet airpower and artillery made short work of them. The war now developed into a new pattern: Almost 80 percent of the country escaped government control. In the west, a strong Soviet presence was maintained to counter Iranian influence.


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  • Afghanistan: the Soviet War (Routledge Revivals)?

Incidentally, special Soviet units would have [ clarification needed ] also performed secret attacks on Iranian territory to destroy suspected mujahideen bases, and their helicopters then got engaged in shootings with Iranian jets. Periodically the Soviet Army undertook multi- divisional offensives into mujahideen-controlled areas. Between and , nine offensives were launched into the strategically important Panjshir Valley , but government control of the area did not improve. Massive Soviet operations would regularly break these sieges, but the mujahideen would return as soon as the Soviets left.

The Soviets did not, at first, foresee taking on such an active role in fighting the rebels and attempted to play down their role there as giving light assistance to the Afghan army. However, the arrival of the Soviets had the opposite effect as it incensed instead of pacified the people, causing the mujahideen to gain in strength and numbers.

The main reason though that the Afghan soldiers were so ineffective was their lack of morale as many of them were not truly loyal to the communist government but simply collecting a paycheck. Once it became apparent that the Soviets would have to get their hands dirty, they followed three main strategies aimed at quelling the uprising.

The Soviets would bomb villages that were near sites of guerrilla attacks on Soviet convoys or known to support resistance groups. Local peoples were forced to either flee their homes or die as daily Soviet attacks made it impossible to live in these areas. By forcing the people of Afghanistan to flee their homes, the Soviets hoped to deprive the guerrillas of resources and safe havens.

The second strategy consisted of subversion which entailed sending spies to join resistance groups and report information as well as bribing local tribes or guerrilla leaders into ceasing operations. Finally, the Soviets used military forays into contested territories in an effort to root out the guerrillas and limit their options.

Classic search and destroy operations were implemented using Mil Mi helicopter gunships that would provide cover for ground forces in armored vehicles. Once the villages were occupied by Soviet forces, inhabitants who remained were frequently interrogated and tortured for information or killed. To complement their brute force approach to weeding out the insurgency , the Soviets used KHAD Afghan secret police to gather intelligence, infiltrate the mujahideen, spread false information, bribe tribal militias into fighting and organize a government militia.

While it is impossible to know exactly how successful the KHAD was in infiltrating mujahideen groups, it is thought that they succeeded in penetrating a good many resistance groups based in Afghanistan , Pakistan and Iran. Often KHAD secured neutrality agreements rather than committed political alignment.

Large salaries and proper weapons attracted a good number of recruits to the cause, even if they were not necessarily "pro-communist". The problem was that many of the recruits they attracted were in fact mujahideen who would join up to procure arms, ammunition and money while also gathering information about forthcoming military operations. In , the size of the LCOSF Limited Contingent of Soviet Forces was increased to , and fighting increased throughout the country, making the bloodiest year of the war. However, despite suffering heavily, the mujahideen were able to remain in the field, mostly because they received thousands of new volunteers daily, and continue resisting the Soviets.

The rebels began cross-border raids into the Soviet Union in Spring In the mids, the Afghan resistance movement , assisted by the United States, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, Egypt, [10] the People's Republic of China and others, contributed to Moscow's high military costs and strained international relations. Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province became a base for the Afghan resistance fighters and the Deobandi ulama of that province played a significant role in the Afghan 'jihad', with Madrasa Haqqaniyya becoming a prominent organisational and networking base for the anti-Soviet Afghan fighters.

Notable among them was a young Saudi named Osama bin Laden , whose Arab group eventually evolved into al-Qaeda. Instead of being the beginning of the collapse of the Afghan Communist government forces after their abandonment by the Soviets, the Afghan communists rallied to break the siege of Jalalabad and to win the first major government victory in years, provoked by the sight of a truck filled with dismembered bodies of Communists chopped to pieces after surrendering by radical non-Afghan salafists eager to show the enemy the fate awaiting the infidels.

Maoist guerilla groups were also active, to a lesser extend compared to the religious mujahideen. Perhaps the most notable of these groups was the Liberation Organization of the People of Afghanistan SAMA , which launched skilled guerilla attacks and controlled some territory north of Kabul in the early years of the war.

The Maoist resistance eventually lost its pace and was severely weakened following the deaths of leaders Faiz Ahmad and Mulavi Dawood in , both committed by the Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin mujahideen faction. In the course of the guerrilla war, leadership came to be distinctively associated with the title of "commander".

It applied to independent leaders, eschewing identification with elaborate military bureaucracy associated with such ranks as general. As the war produced leaders of reputation, "commander" was conferred on leaders of fighting units of all sizes, signifying pride in independence, self-sufficiency, and distinct ties to local communities.

The title epitomized Afghan pride in their struggle against a powerful foe. Segmentation of power and religious leadership were the two values evoked by nomenclature generated in the war. Neither had been favored in the ideology of the former Afghan state. Afghanistan's resistance movement was born in chaos, spread and triumphed chaotically, and did not find a way to govern differently. Virtually all of its war was waged locally by regional warlords.

As warfare became more sophisticated, outside support and regional coordination grew. Even so, the basic units of mujahideen organization and action continued to reflect the highly segmented nature of Afghan society. Olivier Roy estimates that after four years of war, there were at least 4, bases from which mujahideen units operated. Most of these were affiliated with the seven expatriate parties headquartered in Pakistan, which served as sources of supply and varying degrees of supervision. Significant commanders typically led or more men, controlled several bases and dominated a district or a sub-division of a province.

Hierarchies of organization above the bases were attempted. Their operations varied greatly in scope, the most ambitious being achieved by Ahmad Shah Massoud of the Panjshir valley north of Kabul. He led at least 10, trained troopers at the end of the Soviet war and had expanded his political control of Tajik -dominated areas to Afghanistan's northeastern provinces under the Supervisory Council of the North.

Roy also describes regional, ethnic and sectarian variations in mujahideen organization. In the Pashtun areas of the east, south and southwest, tribal structure, with its many rival sub-divisions, provided the basis for military organization and leadership. Mobilization could be readily linked to traditional fighting allegiances of the tribal lashkar fighting force.

In favorable circumstances such formations could quickly reach more than 10,, as happened when large Soviet assaults were launched in the eastern provinces, or when the mujahideen besieged towns, such as Khost in Paktia province in July Lashkar durability was notoriously short; few sieges succeeded. Mujahideen mobilization in non-Pashtun regions faced very different obstacles. Prior to the intervention, few non-Pashtuns possessed firearms.

Early in the war they were most readily available from army troops or gendarmerie who defected or were ambushed. The international arms market and foreign military support tended to reach the minority areas last. In the northern regions, little military tradition had survived upon which to build an armed resistance. Mobilization mostly came from political leadership closely tied to Islam.

Roy contrasts the social leadership of religious figures in the Persian - and Turkic -speaking regions of Afghanistan with that of the Pashtuns. Lacking a strong political representation in a state dominated by Pashtuns, minority communities commonly looked to pious learned or charismatically revered pirs saints for leadership. Extensive Sufi and maraboutic networks were spread through the minority communities, readily available as foundations for leadership, organization, communication and indoctrination. These networks also provided for political mobilization, which led to some of the most effective of the resistance operations during the war.

The mujahideen favoured sabotage operations. The more common types of sabotage included damaging power lines , knocking out pipelines and radio stations, blowing up government office buildings , air terminals , hotels, cinemas, and so on. In the border region with Pakistan, the mujahideen would often launch rockets per day.

Between April and January , they carried out over 23, shelling attacks on government targets. The mujahideen surveyed firing positions that they normally located near villages within the range of Soviet artillery posts, putting the villagers in danger of death from Soviet retaliation. The mujahideen used land mines heavily. Often, they would enlist the services of the local inhabitants, even children. They concentrated on both civilian and military targets, knocking out bridges, closing major roads, attacking convoys , disrupting the electric power system and industrial production, and attacking police stations and Soviet military installations and air bases.

They assassinated government officials and PDPA members, and laid siege to small rural outposts. In March , a bomb exploded at the Ministry of Education, damaging several buildings. In the same month, a widespread power failure darkened Kabul when a pylon on the transmission line from the Naghlu power station was blown up.

On September 4, , insurgents shot down a domestic Bakhtar Airlines plane as it took off from Kandahar airport, killing all 52 people aboard. Mujahideen groups used for assassination had three to five men in each. After they received their mission to kill certain government officials, they busied themselves with studying his pattern of life and its details and then selecting the method of fulfilling their established mission. They practiced shooting at automobiles, shooting out of automobiles , laying mines in government accommodation or houses, using poison, and rigging explosive charges in transport.

In May , the seven principal rebel organizations formed the Seven Party Mujahideen Alliance to coordinate their military operations against the Soviet army. Late in , the groups were active in and around Kabul, unleashing rocket attacks and conducting operations against the communist government. International journalistic perception of the war varied. Major American television journalists were sympathetic to the mujahideen. Reader's Digest took a highly positive view of the mujahideen, a reversal of their usual view of Islamic fighters.

The publication praised their martyrdom and their role in entrapping the Soviets in a Vietnam War-style disaster. At least some, such as leftist journalist Alexander Cockburn , were unsympathetic, criticizing Afghanistan as "an unspeakable country filled with unspeakable people, sheepshaggers and smugglers, who have furnished in their leisure hours some of the worst arts and crafts ever to penetrate the occidental world.

I yield to none in my sympathy to those prostrate beneath the Russian jackboot, but if ever a country deserved rape it's Afghanistan. Kaplan on the other hand, thought any perception of mujahideen as "barbaric" was unfair: Their cruelty toward civilians was unheard of during the war, while Soviet cruelty toward civilians was common. Kaplan note that "none of the American TV networks had a bureau for a war", [] and television cameramen venturing to follow the mujahideen "trekked for weeks on little food, only to return ill and half starved".

And our units in Afghanistan will help the Afghan forces to do it. Whether the introduction of the personal, portable, infrared-homing surface-to-air " Stinger " missile in September was a turning point in the war is disputed. However, these statistics are based on Mujahedin self-reporting, which is of unknown reliability. Selig Harrison rejects such figures, quoting a Russian general who claims the United States "greatly exaggerated" Soviet and Afghan aircraft losses during the war.

According to Soviet figures, in , only 35 aircraft and 63 helicopters were destroyed by all causes. Many Russian military analysts tend to be dismissive of the impact to the Stinger. According to Alan J. Kuperman , Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev decided to withdraw from Afghanistan a year before the mujahideen fired their first Stinger missiles, motivated by U.

The stingers did make an impact at first but within a few months flares, beacons, and exhaust baffles were installed to disorient the missiles, along with night operation and terrain-hugging tactics to prevent the rebels from getting a clear shot. By , Kuperman states, the mujahideen had all but stopped firing them.

Despite an active support for insurgent groups , Pakistanis remained sympathetic to the challenges faced by the Russians in restoring the peace, eventually exploring the idea towards the possibility of setting-up the interim system of government under former monarch Zahir Shah but this was not authorized by President Zia-ul-Haq due to his stance on issue of Durand line.

The first step of the Soviet Union's exit strategy was to transfer the burden of fighting the mujahideen to the Afghan armed forces, with the aim of preparing them to operate without Soviet help. During this phase, the Soviet contingent was restricted to supporting the DRA forces by providing artillery , air support and technical assistance, though some large-scale operations were still carried out by Soviet troops.

Under Soviet guidance, the DRA armed forces were built up to an official strength of , in The ministry of defence forces numbered ,, the ministry of interior 70, and the ministry of state security KHAD 80, However, these were theoretical figures: The decision to engage primarily Afghan forces was taken by the Soviets, but was resented by the PDPA, who viewed the departure of their protectors without enthusiasm.

In May a DRA force attacked well-entrenched mujahideen positions in the Arghandab District , but the mujahideen held their ground, and the attackers suffered heavy casualties. Phillips, both of whom championed Massoud as the Afghan resistance leader most worthy of US support under the Reagan Doctrine. The arrival of Mikhail Gorbachev on the scene in and his 'new thinking' on foreign and domestic policy was likely an important factor in the Soviets' decision to withdraw.

Gorbachev had been attempting to remove the Soviet Union from the economic stagnation that had set in, under the leadership of Premier Brezhnev, and reform the Soviet Union's economy and image across the board with Glasnost and Perestroika. Gorbachev had also been attempting to ease cold war tensions by signing the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty in with the U. Gorbachev regarded confrontation with China and resulting military build ups on that border as one of Brezhnev's biggest mistakes. In the last phase, Soviet troops prepared and executed their withdrawal from Afghanistan, whilst limiting the launching of offensive operations by those who hadn't withdrawn yet.

By mid the Soviet Union announced that it would start withdrawing its forces. Sibghatullah Mojaddedi was selected as the head of the Interim Islamic State of Afghanistan, in an attempt to reassert its legitimacy against the Moscow-sponsored Kabul regime. Bush , achieving a critical diplomatic victory for the Afghan resistance.

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Defeat of the Kabul government was their solution for peace. This confidence, sharpened by their distrust of the United Nations, virtually guaranteed their refusal to accept a political compromise. Operation Magistral , has been one of the final offensive operations undertaken by the Soviets; a successful sweep operation that cleared the road between Gardez and Khost.

This operation did not have any lasting effect on the outcome of the conflict nor the soiled political and military status of the Soviets in the eyes of the West, but was a symbolic gesture that marked the end of their widely condemned presence in the country with a victory. The first half of the Soviet contingent was withdrawn from May 15 to August 16, and the second from November 15 to February 15, In order to ensure a safe passage the Soviets had negotiated ceasefires with local mujahideen commanders, so the withdrawal was generally executed peacefully, [] except for the operation "Typhoon".

Afghanistan: The Soviet War - Ed Girardet - Google Книги

General Yazov, the Defense Minister of Soviet Union , ordered the 40th Army to violate the agreement with Ahmed Shah Masood , who commanded a large force in the Panjshir Valley, and attack his relaxed and exposed forces. The Soviet attack was initiated to protect Najibullah, who did not have a cease fire in effect with Masood, and who rightly feared an offensive by Masood's forces after the Soviet withdrawal. To minimize their own losses the Soviets abstained from close-range fight, instead they used long-range artillery, surface-to-surface and air-to-surface missiles.

Numerous civilian casualties were reported. Masood had not threatened the withdrawal to this point, and did not attack Soviet forces after they breached the agreement. After the withdrawal of the Soviets the DRA forces were left fighting alone and had to abandon some provincial capitals, and it was widely believed that they would not be able to resist the mujahideen for long.

However, in the spring of DRA forces inflicted a sharp defeat on the mujahideen at Jalalabad. The government of President Karmal, a puppet regime , was largely ineffective. It was weakened by divisions within the PDPA and the Parcham faction, and the regime's efforts to expand its base of support proved futile. Moscow came to regard Karmal as a failure and blamed him for the problems.

Years later, when Karmal's inability to consolidate his government had become obvious, Mikhail Gorbachev, then General Secretary of the Soviet Communist Party , said:. The main reason that there has been no national consolidation so far is that Comrade Karmal is hoping to continue sitting in Kabul with our help. Informal negotiations for a Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan had been underway since The United Nations set up a special Mission to oversee the process. In this way, Najibullah had stabilized his political position enough to begin matching Moscow's moves toward withdrawal.

On July 20, , the withdrawal of Soviet troops from the country was announced. The withdrawal of Soviet forces was planned out by Lt. Boris Gromov , who, at the time, was the commander of the 40th Army. Among other things the Geneva accords identified the US and Soviet non-intervention in the internal affairs of Pakistan and Afghanistan and a timetable for full Soviet withdrawal.

The agreement on withdrawal held, and on February 15, , the last Soviet troops departed on schedule from Afghanistan. Bartrop , [] scholars from Yale Law School such as W. Michael Reisman [] and Charles Norchi, [] as well as scholar Mohammed Kakar, believe that the Afghans were victims of genocide by the Soviet Union. Up to 2 million Afghans lost their lives during the Soviet occupation. In one notable incident the Soviet Army committed mass killing of civilians in the summer of They used booby traps, mines, and chemical substances throughout the country. The Soviet forces abducted Afghan women in helicopters while flying in the country in search of mujahideen.


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  5. In November a number of such incidents had taken place in various parts of the country, including Laghman and Kama. Soviet soldiers as well as KhAD agents kidnapped young women from the city of Kabul and the areas of Darul Aman and Khair Khana, near the Soviet garrisons, to rape them. President Jimmy Carter placed a trade embargo against the Soviet Union on shipments of commodities such as grain. This resulted in newly increased tensions between the two nations. The international diplomatic response was severe, ranging from stern warnings from the UN to a US-led boycott of the Summer Olympics in Moscow.

    The intervention, along with other events, such as the Iranian revolution and the US hostage stand-off that accompanied it, the Iran—Iraq War , the Lebanon War and the escalating tensions between Pakistan and India, contributed to the volatility of the Middle East and South Asian regions in the s. The Non-Aligned Movement was sharply divided between those who believed the Soviet deployment to be a legitimate police action and others who considered the deployment an illegal invasion. Among the Warsaw Pact countries, the intervention was condemned only by Romania.

    The Afghan Mujahideen were supported by several other countries, with the U. The Soviet air base outside of Kandahar was "30 minutes flying time by strike aircraft or naval bomber" to the Persian Gulf according to Robert Kaplan. It "became the heart of the southernmost concentration of Soviet soldier" in the year history of Russian expansion in central Asia. National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski , known for his hardline policies on the Soviet Union, initiated in a campaign supporting mujahideen in Pakistan and Afghanistan , which was run by Pakistani security services with financial support from the Central Intelligence Agency and Britain's MI6.

    We immediately launched a twofold process when we heard that the Soviets had entered Afghanistan. The first involved direct reactions and sanctions focused on the Soviet Union, and both the State Department and the National Security Council prepared long lists of sanctions to be adopted, of steps to be taken to increase the international costs to the Soviet Union of their actions.

    And the second course of action led to my going to Pakistan a month or so after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, for the purpose of coordinating with the Pakistanis a joint response, the purpose of which would be to make the Soviets bleed for as much and as long as is possible; and we engaged in that effort in a collaborative sense with the Saudis , the Egyptians, the British, the Chinese, and we started providing weapons to the Mujaheddin, from various sources again — for example, some Soviet arms from the Egyptians and the Chinese.

    We even got Soviet arms from the Czechoslovak communist government, since it was obviously susceptible to material incentives; and at some point we started buying arms for the Mujaheddin from the Soviet army in Afghanistan, because that army was increasingly corrupt. The supplying of billions of dollars in arms to the Afghan mujahideen militants was one of the CIA's longest and most expensive covert operations.

    At least 3 billion in U. Pakistan's secret service, Inter-Services Intelligence ISI , was used as an intermediary for most of these activities to disguise the sources of support for the resistance. Although some sources have claimed that no Americans had direct contact with the mujahideen, [] [] there was recurrent contact between the CIA and Afghan commanders, especially by agent Howard Hart , [] and Director of Central Intelligence William Casey personally visited training camps on several occasions.

    Shortly after the intervention, Pakistan's military ruler General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq called for a meeting of senior military members and technocrats of his military government. After the Soviet deployment, Pakistan's military ruler General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq started accepting financial aid from the Western powers to aid the mujahideen.

    The SSG are widely suspected of participating in Operation Hill , near the Pakistani border where nearly suspected SSG personnel were killed in a futile attempt to assault the Soviet held hill. The theft of large sums of aid spurred Pakistan's economic growth, but along with the war in general had devastating side effects for that country.

    The siphoning off of aid weapons, in which the weapons logistics and coordination were put under the Pakistan Navy in the port city of Karachi , contributed to disorder and violence there, while heroin entering from Afghanistan to pay for arms contributed to addiction problems. In retaliation for Pakistan's assistance to the insurgents, the KHAD Afghan security service, under leader Mohammad Najibullah , carried out according to the Mitrokhin Archives and other sources a large number of operations against Pakistan. In , incidents resulted in deaths in Pakistan.

    In April , an ammunition depot outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad was blown up killing and injuring more than people. These attacks are known to have caused at least civilian deaths and extensive damage. Sometimes they got involved in shootings with the Pakistani jets defending the airspace. Pakistan took in millions of Afghan refugees mostly Pashtun fleeing the Soviet occupation. Although the refugees were controlled within Pakistan's largest province, Balochistan under then- martial law ruler General Rahimuddin Khan , the influx of so many refugees — believed to be the largest refugee population in the world [] — spread into several other regions.

    All of this had a heavy impact on Pakistan and its effects continue to this day. Pakistan, through its support for the mujahideen, played a significant role in the eventual withdrawal of Soviet military personnel from Afghanistan. During the Sino-Soviet split , strained relations between China and the USSR resulted in bloody border clashes and mutual backing for the opponent's enemies. China and Afghanistan had neutral relations with each other during the King's rule. When the pro-Soviet Afghan Communists seized power in Afghanistan in , relations between China and the Afghan communists quickly turned hostile.

    The Afghan pro-Soviet communists supported China's then-enemy Vietnam and blamed China for supporting Afghan anticommunist militants. China responded to the Soviet war in Afghanistan by supporting the Afghan mujahideen and ramping up their military presence near Afghanistan in Xinjiang. China acquired military equipment from America to defend itself from Soviet attack. The training camps were moved from Pakistan into China itself. Anti-aircraft missiles, rocket launchers and machine guns, valued at hundreds of millions, were given to the mujahideen by the Chinese. Chinese military advisors and army troops were present with the Mujahidin during training.

    Between December 25, , and February 15, , a total of , [ citation needed ] soldiers served with the forces in Afghanistan though there were only 80,—, serving at one time: A further 21, personnel were with the Soviet troop contingent over the same period doing various white collar and blue collar jobs. The total irrecoverable personnel losses of the Soviet Armed Forces, frontier, and internal security troops came to 14, During this period servicemen were missing in action or taken prisoner; were later freed, of whom 97 returned to the USSR and 22 went to other countries.

    Of the troops deployed, 53, were wounded, injured, or sustained concussion and , fell sick. A high proportion of casualties were those who fell ill. This was because of local climatic and sanitary conditions, which were such that acute infections spread rapidly among the troops. There were , cases of infectious hepatitis , 31, of typhoid fever, and , of other diseases. Of the 11, who were discharged from the army after being wounded, maimed, or contracting serious diseases, 10, men, were left disabled.

    Material losses were as follows: There have also been numerous reports of chemical weapons being used by Soviet forces in Afghanistan, often indiscriminately against civilians. Some of the causes of the Soviet Union's withdrawal from Afghanistan leading to the Afghanistan regime's eventual defeat include []. Civilian death and destruction from the war was considerable. Estimates of Afghan civilian deaths vary from , [32] to 2,, In the s, half of all refugees in the world were Afghan.

    Felix Ermacora , the UN Special Rapporteur to Afghanistan, said that heavy fighting in combat areas cost the lives of more than 35, civilians in , 15, in , and around 14, in Rummel , an analyst of political killings, estimated that Soviet forces were responsible for , democidal killings during the war and that the government of Afghanistan was responsible for , democidal killings. Rocket attacks on Kabul's residential areas caused more than civilian deaths in according to the UN's Ermacora.

    Along with fatalities were 1. Irrigation systems, crucial to agriculture in Afghanistan's arid climate , were destroyed by aerial bombing and strafing by Soviet or government forces. In the worst year of the war, , well over half of all the farmers who remained in Afghanistan had their fields bombed, and over one quarter had their irrigation systems destroyed and their livestock shot by Soviet or government troops, according to a survey conducted by Swedish relief experts []. The population of Afghanistan's second largest city, Kandahar, was reduced from , before the war to no more than 25, inhabitants, following a months-long campaign of carpet bombing and bulldozing by the Soviets and Afghan communist soldiers in A great deal of damage was done to the civilian children population by land mines.

    Critics of Soviet and Afghan government forces describe their effect on Afghan culture as working in three stages: The Geneva Accords of , which ultimately led to the withdrawal of the Soviet forces in early , left the Afghan government in ruins. The accords had failed to address adequately the issue of the post-occupation period and the future governance of Afghanistan. The assumption among most Western diplomats was that the Soviet-backed government in Kabul would soon collapse; however, this was not to happen for another three years. The exclusion of key groups such as refugees and Shias , combined with major disagreements between the different mujahideen factions, meant that the IIGA never succeeded in acting as a functional government.

    Before the war, Afghanistan was already one of the world's poorest nations. The prolonged conflict left Afghanistan ranked out of in the UNDP's Human Development Index , making Afghanistan one of the least developed countries in the world. The US decided not to help with reconstruction of the country, instead handing the interests of the country over to US allies Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. Pakistan quickly took advantage of this opportunity and forged relations with warlords and later the Taliban , to secure trade interests and routes.

    Captain Tarlan Eyvazov, a soldier in the Soviet forces during the war, stated that the Afghan children's future is destined for war. Eyvazov said, "Children born in Afghanistan at the start of the war The swift rise to power, from the young Taliban in , was the result of the disorder and civil war that had warlords running wild because of the complete breakdown of law and order in Afghanistan after the departure of the Soviets. A total of 3. Of this total, about , were based in the city of Peshawar , while more than 2 million were located in other parts of the northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa then known as the North-West Frontier Province.

    Over the years Pakistan and Iran have imposed tighter controls on refugees which have resulted in numerous returnees. According to scholars Rafael Reuveny and Aseem Prakash, the war contributed to the fall of the Soviet Union by undermining the image of the Red Army as invincible, undermining Soviet legitimacy, and by creating new forms of political participation. The war created a cleavage between the party and the military in the Soviet Union where the efficacy of using the Soviet military to maintain the USSR's overseas interests was now put in doubt.

    In the non-Russian republics, those interested in independence were emboldened by the army's defeat. In Russia the war created cleavage between the party and the military, changing the perceptions of leaders about the ability to put down anti-Soviet resistance militarily as it had in Czechoslovakia in , Hungary in , and East Germany in As the war was viewed as "a Russian war fought by non Russians against Afghans", outside of Russia it undermined the legitimacy of the Soviet Union as a trans-national political union. The war created new forms of political participation, in the form of new civil organizations of war veterans Afghansti which weakened the political hegemony of the communist party.

    The war did not end with the withdrawal of the Soviet Army. The Soviet Union left Afghanistan deep in winter, with intimations of panic among Kabul officials. The Afghan mujahideen were poised to attack provincial towns and cities and eventually Kabul, if necessary.

    Najibullah's government, though failing to win popular support, territory, or international recognition, was able to remain in power until Civil war between the Afghan army and mujahideen continued and about , Afghan civilians had lost their lives in the chaos and civil war of the s. Kabul had achieved a stalemate that exposed the mujahideen's weaknesses, political and military. But for nearly three years, while Najibullah's government successfully defended itself against mujahideen attacks, factions within the government had also developed connections with its opponents.

    According to Russian publicist Andrey Karaulov , the main trigger for Najibullah losing power was Russia's refusal to sell oil products to Afghanistan in for political reasons the new Yeltsin government did not want to support the former communists , which effectively triggered an embargo. Grain production declined an average of 3. During the withdrawal of Soviet troops, Afghanistan's natural gas fields were capped to prevent sabotage. Following the Soviet withdrawal, some of the foreign volunteers including Osama bin Laden 's al-Qaeda [] [] and young Afghan refugees, went on to continue violent jihad in Afghanistan, Pakistan and abroad.

    Some of the thousands of Afghan Arabs who left Afghanistan went on to become "capable leaders, religious ideologues and military commanders," who played "vital roles" as insurgents or terrorists in places such as Algeria , Egypt, Bosnia and Chechnya. As many as 35, non-Afghan Muslim fighters went to Afghanistan between and After the Soviets left, training continued and "tens of thousands" from "some 40 nations" came to prepare for armed insurrections "to bring the struggle back home". The man instrumental not only in generating international support but also in inspiring these volunteers to travel to Afghanistan for the jihad was a Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood cleric, Abdullah Azzam.

    Touring the Muslim world and the United States, he inspired young Muslims with stories of miraculous deeds, such as mujahideen who defeated vast columns of Soviet troops virtually single-handedly, angels riding into battle on horseback, and falling bombs intercepted by birds.

    When back in the volunteer camps and training centers that he helped set up around Peshawar, Pakistan, Azzam exercised a "strong influence. The volunteers also influenced each other. Many "unexpected" religious-political ideas resulted from the "cross-pollination" during the "great gathering" of Islamists from dozens of countries in the camps and training centers. When the Soviet Union fell shortly after their withdrawal from Afghanistan, the volunteers were "exultant", [] believing that—in the words of Osama bin Laden —the credit for "the dissolution of the Soviet Union They eagerly sought to duplicate their jihad in other countries.

    Three such countries were Bosnia , Algeria and Egypt. In Algeria and Egypt thousand of volunteers returned and fought but were even less successful. Among the approximately three million Afghan refugees in Pakistan, thousands of children were educated in madrasa boarding schools financed by aid from the US and Gulf monarchies.

    Since that aid was distributed according to the conservative Islamist ideological criteria of Pakistan's President Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq and Saudi Arabia and ignoring native Afghan traditions , the schools were part of networks of the favored Hizb-e-Islami party and the Pakistan Deobandi. Cut off from families and local traditions, the madrassa students were "educated to put Deobandi doctrines into action through obedience to the fatwas produced in the madrasses in a spirit of conservatism and religious rigor.

    But unlike the traditionally non-violent Deobandi, this "hybrid movement" embraced the violence of jihad, and unlike the Islamists of Hizb-e-Islami they were uninterested in "islamizing modernity" of western knowledge or in western knowledge at all. Blowback , or unintended consequences of funding the mujahideen, was said to have come to the United States in the World Trade Center bombing and the September 11 attacks.

    His group al-Qaeda, returned to Afghanistan to take refuge with the Taliban after being expelled from Sudan. Commemorating the intervention of December 25, , in December , veterans of the Soviet war in Afghanistan were honoured by the Duma or Parliament of the Russian Federation. On December 25, the lower house of the parliament defended the Soviet war in Afghanistan on the 30th anniversary of its start, and praised the veterans of the conflict. Differing assessments of the war "mustn't erode the Russian people's respect for the soldiers who honestly fulfilled their duty in implementing tasks to combat international terrorism and religious extremists".

    Duma member Semyon Bagdasarov Just Russia advocated that Russia had to reject Western calls for stronger assistance to the US-led ISAF -coalition in Afghanistan and also had to establish contacts with the "anti-Western forces"; the Taliban , in case they regain power.