Afghanistan’s Islamic Emirate Returns: Life Under a Resurgent Taliban

Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016 (AP photo by Allauddin Khan).
Taliban fighters react to a speech by their senior leader in the Shindand district of Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27, 2016 (AP photo by Allauddin Khan).
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The Afghan Taliban are experiencing a revival. Today, they find themselves in control of much of the territory they claimed before 9/11, a new version of the Islamic Emirate that the U.S. intended to eliminate. Instead of focusing on public statements, policymakers trying to assess the Taliban’s motives must closely examine what life in Taliban-controlled territory looks like. In 1992, after groups of guerrilla fighters known as mujahideen succeeded in toppling Afghanistan’s communist government, which had been backed by the Soviet Union, they quickly turned on each other, kicking off a civil war. In response, a group of young clerics […]

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