Taliban

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.

An Afghan policeman keeps watch over miners at a gold mine on a mountainside near the village of Qara Zaghan in Baghlan province on May 6, 2013.

Afghanistan Wanted Chinese Mining Investment. It Got a Chinese Spy Ring Instead.

Desperate to jump-start its economy, Kabul is sick of waiting for Beijing to tap the country’s mineral wealth.

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.

A doctor measures the blood pressure of a patient at the Kahdistan health clinic in Herat province, Afghanistan, on Oct. 7. The increasing presence of midwives across the country has started to play a role in improving a mother’s and baby’s chances of survival. Afghanistan’s maternal mortality rate has dropped from 1,300 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2002 to 638 deaths per 100,000 births in 2017.

Looming Aid Cuts Will Harm Afghan Women’s Health

With violence on the rise and the U.S. military drawing down, international donors are pulling back some assistance to Afghanistan. Women in refugee camps stand to suffer.

A beggar who said he lost his leg from a mine injury is seen in traffic on Sept. 21, 2019 in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Afghanistan Needs Truth Before It Can Have Reconciliation

Politicians and warlords have benefited from decades of violence. The victims of the country’s endless wars could provide the key to a lasting peace.

Police guard an entrance to Kabul University the day after an attack by a gunman at the university in Kabul on Nov. 3.

Crime Wave Further Rocks Confidence in Afghan Government

Afghan officials are trying to contain a spate of kidnappings and armed robberies that appear designed to bolster public thirst for Taliban-style justice—just ahead of a critical donor meeting.

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.

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.

Internally displaced people with their belongings flee from Nadali district to Lashkar Gah during the ongoing clashes between Taliban fighters and Afghan security forces in Helmand province on October 14, 2020.

The U.S. Once Surged into Helmand Province. Now the Taliban Is, Too.

As Afghanistan peace talks drag on, with Washington sending mixed signals on troop withdrawals, the Taliban make a violent bid for a key province.

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?

A protester carries a “Register to Vote” sign during a peaceful demonstration against police brutality in Los Angeles on June 6.

Our Top Weekend Reads

Media bubbles get a reality check, Sudan toys with Tel Aviv, and the ivory tower comes full circle.

Arman Omari, 25, sits in Nangarhar's Momand Dara district in Afghanistan on Sept. 19.

Feeling Abandoned by Kabul, Many Rural Afghans Flock to Join the Taliban

“My hope is with the Taliban,” said one new recruit who has known only war and broken promises.

A view of a mostly deserted lapis lazuli mining encampment in the Afghan province of Badakhshan on Oct. 16, 2016.

The Taliban, at Least, Are Striking Gold in Afghanistan

The militant group mines almost half a billion dollars a year from Afghan soil—and wants more.

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani and US President Donald Trump shake hands before a meeting at the Palace Hotel during the 72nd United Nations General Assembly on September 21, 2017 in New York City.

Public Support Surges for Trump-Backed Afghan Peace Plan

Nearly two-thirds of Trump and Biden supporters said they “strongly” or “somewhat” support the peace deal that would get U.S. forces out of Afghanistan next year.

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