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Sep 11, 2021
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From the April Revolution to the American Occupation of Afghanistan

Who made Afghanistan an Islamic state

Islamists did not come to rule Afghanistan today, with the withdrawal of US troops. And not even in 1996, when Kabul was seized by the Taliban for the first time.

The path from a traditional Muslim state to a secular state of Afghanistan has been going on since 1926, when Emir Amanullah, starting the modernization of the country, abolished the emirate and declared himself king and the country a kingdom. The supremacy of secular law over Islamic law was established in 1973, after the overthrow of royal power and the proclamation of a republic led by Mohammed Daoud. The People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), which was established in the mid-1960s, and declared Marxist-Leninist principles, grew stronger in the country. By April 1978, the PDPA was only slightly outnumbered by the Bolshevik party by early 1917, and it consisted of educated intellectuals and the military who controlled many army units.

Daoud could not cope with the crisis economic trends, and by the beginning of 1978, the decline in living standards was such that more than a million Afghans emigrated to Iran.

On April 17, 1978, one of the leaders of the Parcham faction of the PDPA, Akbar Khaybar, was shot dead. His funeral became an anti-government action which brought together tens of thousands of people. Daoud arrested the leaders of the PDPA – both Taraki, and Amin (the Khalq faction, more radical), and Karmal (the Parcham faction, more moderate). The party is under the threat of repression and prohibition – and then the leaders of the PDPA gave their supporters in the army the order to overthrow Daud. Saurian (April) revolution was natural decision in the context of the growing crisis and exacerbation of the political struggle.

Afghanistan is ripe for the overthrow of the previous government, but not ripe for the revolutionary transformations, implementing which Taraki wanted to go the path that took the USSR six decades. The more radical the transformations were, the more fierce the resistance became. The more assertively the opponents of the revolution, supported from outside, acted, the more severely the revolution reacted. Added to this was the struggle between the moderates (Parcham) and the radicals (Khalq) in the PDPA. Ultimately, the moderate wing was removed from the leadership of the party and the country.

By the end of 1979, after two dozen appeals to Moscow by Taraki and Amin, after the overthrow and murder of Taraki, Soviet troops entered Afghanistan. The Khalqists were removed from power, and the leader of Parcham, Babrak Karmal, became the head of Afghanistan.

Karmal built his policy as if he counted on the eternal preservation of the USSR military units in the country and the constant leadership of Soviet instructors. Soviet specialists built production and social facilities; The United States, Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and China supported the tribes who fought against the revolution and never had sympathy for the central government – neither the emir, nor the king, nor Daud, nor the PDPA.

And then “perestroika” began in the USSR. And an idea arose in the minds of the perestroika: since the tribes are fighting against the Afghan revolution under the banner of Islam, it is necessary to declare Afghanistan an Islamic state, take away the green banner from the Mujahideen, declare a policy of national reconciliation, pardon the leaders of the Mujahideen and invite them to the government.

And in order to support this turn by changing the face of the state leadership, the parchamist Karmal was also replaced with a parchamist – the more flexible Najibullah.

Najibullah announced a ceasefire, invited the Mujahideen to the government, inscribed Islam as a state religion in the constitution, and threw out references to socialism from the party program. The Democratic Republic of Afghanistan was renamed the Republic of Afghanistan, and the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan – the Vatan (Fatherland) Party. And he announced the pardon of Ahmad Shah Massoud, Haqqani and Ismail Khan – the most popular field commanders among the Mujahideen.

It is difficult to say whether it was his idea, but it was in line with the preaching of “perestroika” …

In fact, it was neither the Taliban nor the Mujahideen who made Afghanistan an Islamic state – it was Najibullah who made it that way in 1986-87. at the suggestion of the Soviet leadership, a coup d’etat, and those who prompted him to do so from Moscow.

Now that the Taliban have occupied Kabul and announced the formation of their government, many say that this is the order of things. That the Taliban are not al-Qaeda *. That you need to be friends with the Taliban, that they will not go beyond the borders of Afghanistan to the north. They say they were terrorists, but having taken power, they will settle down … At the turn of the 1920s-1930s. many in the West said about the same thing about the German National Socialists …

And in Afghanistan, in the absurd proclamation of a “policy of national reconciliation” there under Gorbachev, the Mujahideen rightly discerned the first steps of the retreat of Najibullah and the USSR. This surrender did not produce any results. The presence of the Soviet side partly held back the struggle between Khalq and Parcham, but when Soviet troops withdrew, a massive offensive of the Mujahideen began. The structures of the PDPA and the Afghan army responded with powerful blows, the Islamists rolled back. The Khalq was ready to fight, but in the spring of the following 1990, Najibullah, in agreement with the Kremlin, began arresting the Khalqi military who were ready to fight.

As a result, the Khalqists were defeated, but Najibullah lost the confidence of part of the party and the army, which began to go over to the side of Najibullah’s opponents. And the Gorbachev leadership, which was disappearing into oblivion, refused to supply Najibullah with weapons, ammunition and fuel and lubricants.

By the beginning of 1992, it was not just the Mujahideen who fought against the government – those units and generals who defeated the Mujahideen in 1989 were at war.

The Mujahideen took Kabul, overthrowing Najibullah with the forces of the Uzbek troops of General Dostum, who a year earlier massacred the Khalqists who remained loyal to the revolution. The conspiracy was organized by the ally of Najibullah, Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdul-l-Wakil.

The death of Najibullah himself was terrible: the “warriors of jihad” tied him with a rope to a jeep and dragged him all over Kabul … The Republic of Afghanistan ceased to exist. In its place, the Islamic State of Afghanistan appeared, which held out until after the explosion Twin Towers in New York, this country was not occupied by the Americans for two decades.

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