January 20, 2022
Afghanistan (Pashtun/Dari: افغانستان, Afghanistan), officially the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, is a country located in South and Central Asia. The country is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south, Iran to the west, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan to the north, Tajikistan and China to the northeast. Its area covers 652,000 km² (252,000 sq mi), making it the 41st largest country in the world. Afghanistan has a population of around 31.4 million as of 2020, belonging to the Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, and Uzbek ethnic groups. Kabul is the capital and largest city of Afghanistan. Humans have been living in Afghanistan since the Middle Old Stone Age (Paleolithic). Its proximity to the Silk Road has connected the country with Europe and other parts of Asia. Throughout the centuries, Afghanistan has been the home of many people and has been the destination of military campaigns, notably those of Alexander the Great, Maury, Muslim Arabs, the Mongol Empire, Britain, the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union and the United States of America. Afghanistan is also a place where the Kushan dynasties, White Huns, Samanids, Safarids, Ghaznavids, Gurids, Khilji, Mughals, Hotaki, Durranis and others have arisen and formed great empires. The political history of the modern state of Afghanistan begins with the rule of the Hotaki and Durrani Empires in the 18th Century. In the late 19th century, Afghanistan became a buffer state between the Russian Empire and the British Empire. After the Third Afghan War in 1919, King Amannullah tried to modernize Afghanistan, but failed to do so. Afghanistan became a peaceful country during the forty years of Zahir Shah's reign. In the 1970s, a series of coups followed by a series of civil wars destroyed much of Afghanistan. These events began when the country was made a socialist state under the influence of the Soviet Union during the Soviet-Afghan War. After the Soviet troops left Afghanistan, the country became an Islamic state with the Peshawar Accords, but most of its territory has been controlled by the Taliban fighters who ruled the country for almost five years by enforcing Islamic Sharia completely. Since the September 11, 2001 attacks on America, when the Taliban were forced out of Afghanistan by the NATO-led coalition for hiding the whereabouts of the great fighter Osama bin Laden (Founder of Al Qaeda). Afghan politics was replaced by a pro-Western government that was elected through a democratic process. In 2021, after 20 years of war, US President Joe Biden decided to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan. This decision gives room for the Taliban to immediately attack and seize areas of Afghanistan from the control of the central government. After taking control of other provinces, the Taliban managed to enter Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, on August 15, 2021. Afghanistan later became an Islamic state that established Islam as the official religion and law.