afghan war

Photographers, including Jawad Jalali, take shelter as a new explosion is heard while photographing an attack in Kabul in this archival photo.

‘This is the Darkest Moment’: Afghans Flee a Crumbling Country

The educated middle classes that were meant to be the foundation of a new Afghanistan are tired of terror, insecurity, and the return of the Taliban.

A convoy crosses a bridge in Termez, now part of Uzbekistan, during the withdrawal of the Soviet Red Army from Afghanistan, on May 21, 1988.

America Is Going the Same Way as the Soviets in Afghanistan

The Soviet withdrawal was a disaster. The U.S. version looks eerily similar.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani arrives with the government delegation during a visit in Herat province, Afghanistan, on Jan. 21.

To Leave Afghanistan, Biden Must Solve His Ghani Problem

Even as the United States checks the Taliban, it must stop the Afghan president from playing the spoiler.

A plume of smoke rises over Khost city moments after a car bomb detonated at the gates of an Afghan National Security Forces base on Oct. 27, 2020, leading to an eight-hour battle between Afghan forces and unknown attackers part of a spate of violence in the region near Camp Chapman.

Another Base Attack in Afghanistan Hushed Up to Hurry U.S. Exit

Camp Chapman, once the scene of the CIA’s second-deadliest day, was hit again in December—but never reported.

An Afghan man cries beside the coffins of victims in a Taliban militant attack

Afghans Caught in the Crossfire While U.S. Prepares to Clear Out

Despite ongoing peace talks, intensifying Taliban attacks on Afghans across the country are out of control—and threaten the country’s future.

Abdul Akbari, who was shot in his left leg during the Kabul University attack, recovers at Ali Abed hospital in Kabul on Nov. 2.

Terrorist Attack in Kabul Shatters Lives—and Illusions

“We had hopes, but we are not allowed to hope,” said one survivor of the fatal assault on Afghanistan’s biggest university.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the troops during a surprise Thanksgiving visit at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan on Nov. 28, 2019.

Whatever Happens on Tuesday, Afghans Just Want an End to Their Own National Nightmare

Both Biden and Trump have pledged to pull U.S. troops out of Afghanistan. But the Taliban have a vote, too.

Members of the Solidarity Party of Afghanistan protest against the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan ahead of its 16th anniversary in Kabul on Oct. 6, 2017.

Afghans See No Good Choices in the U.S. Election

Regardless of who wins next week, Afghans feel neither Trump nor Biden will do anything for Afghanistan—they just hope the next president completes the U.S. withdrawal.

An Afghan woman holds a weapon as she stands among orphaned children at their home in the Kot district of Nangarhar province in Afghanistan on April 22, 2019.

Empire of Graveyards

Nineteen years ago, the United States began its war in Afghanistan. What is it leaving behind?

Pakistani army soldiers gather near a vehicle at a border terminal in Ghulam Khan, a town in North Waziristan, on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, on January 27, 2019.

Everyone Wants a Piece of Afghanistan

A U.S. withdrawal has opened the door to a possible political settlement, but success will depend on regional powers and the country’s neighbors.

Afghan border policemen walk past a bunker destroyed during clashes with Pakistani troops in Nangarhar province on May 8, 2013. (Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images)

Afghans Are Cheering for an Indian Win

For Kabul, India is a vital counterbalance to an aggressive neighbor.

Ismail Khan, 14, at the juvenile rehabilitation center in Kabul on Aug. 11. He was caught during an operation to carry ammunition for Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, which he joined after his parent and sister were killed by rocket fire in 2014.

Afghanistan Is Trying to Save Its Child Bombers

In a Kabul clinic, staff struggle to help teenagers drafted by the Taliban.

Sikh community leader Rawail Singh lights the Diwali lamps with his daughter Komal on Oct. 18, 2017, in Kabul. (Ruchi Kumar for Foreign Policy)

‘We Belong to Afghanistan’

Rawail Singh believed in a peaceful future for Sikhs like him in his homeland — and died for it.

Various members of the Afghan armed forces unload a casualty from an ambulance at the Tirinkot airbase in Uruzgan province on May 4.

The Walking Dead

As U.S. troops draw down, the Afghan military struggles to provide care for its countless wounded soldiers — on the battlefield and at home.

Afghan girls at school in Herat province on Oct. 17. (Hoshang Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images)

Afghanistan Ranks Among the Worst Places for Girls to Get an Education

The United States poured millions into education in Afghanistan. Did it do anything?

Lashkar Gah, AFGHANISTAN:  (FILES) In this file photograph dated 17 May 2006, British soldiers from 21 Air Assault Battery Royal Artillery, who are providing the Helmand Task Force Provincial Reconstruction Team, are silhouetted against the sky as they provide security for a meeting with the Afghan National Police at the fortress Qala-e-Bost in Lashkar Gah, Helmand province.  Two British soldiers serving in the NATO force in southern Afghanistan were killed 01 August 2006 while another was seriously wounded and a fourth reported missing, presumed killed, the ministry of defense in Britain said.   AFP PHOTO/ JOHN D MCHUGH  (Photo credit should read JOHN D MCHUGH/AFP/Getty Images)

Can There Be Peace With Honor in Afghanistan?

In an era when wars never end, America’s definition of peace needs to be defined down.

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