Afghanistan: A Study in Internal Conflict and National Cohesion

Ghulam Mustafa, Adil Khan


Conflicts are caused by various reasons. When competing groups’ goals, objectives, needs or values clash the aggression and violence is a result. Afghanistan as multi ethnic state enjoyed internal flexibility till socialist revolution (1978) that changed its social fabric due to ideological clash. In bipolar world this conflict invited the involvement of external actors (USSR & USA). Even after the withdrawal of Soviet troops this conflict sustained till 1992. The Mujahidin who had become new masters of the war torn country added fuel to the fire by converting an ideological clash into an ethnic one. Taliban replaced the Mujahidin but their religious orthodoxy also failed to bring national cohesion.
The long sustained conflict has direct bearings on national and individual life of people of Afghanistan who have lost their ability to work together. All attempts made on national cohesion and integration so far have failed. People do not rely and trust each other and they have lost their motivation to work together and to rebuild their institutions and economy. It is the legacy of the long war that is still going on. A closer look at the last 35 years traumatic history of the country clearly illustrates the complexity of the problem due to clash of divergent aims and objectives of several parties.


Internal Conflict; National Cohesion; Marxist Ideas; Mujahidin; Taliban; Ethnicity; Afghanistan

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