War in Afghanistan

The Afghan war between US-lead Nato forces and Taliban insurgent groups was triggered by the attack on the World Trade Centre in New York and Pentagon on September 11, 2001. It has cost more than 3,000 lives on the Nato side and some 13,000 civilian lives. On May 2, 2011, Osama bin Laden, a major target of the war, was killed by US special forces.   

Afghan security forces patrol following an operation against Islamic State militants in Pachir Wa Agam district of Nangarhar province. As in Syria, Russia is casting its increased involvement in Afghanistan in the context of the growing Islamic State presence there. Photo: AFP

Is Putin hoping for ‘another Syria’ in Afghanistan?

A Russia-led initiative involving China and Pakistan that seeks a political settlement to Afghanistan’s civil war has the makings of a diplomatic alliance that could supplant the United States as the leading power in Central Asia.