The Political Landscape of Afghanistan and the Presidential Election of 2014

Afghanistan’s upheavals have been a result of many factors. Abject poverty, being landlocked, a hostile region, clash of modernists and traditionalists, weak states, interventions by superpowers, presence of foreign non-state actors and an illicit narco-economy are but a few to mention. The country continues to reel from the effects of colonial constructs of the British…

The Pakistan Taliban Movement: An Appraisal

In October 2014 the spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban (TTP) announced his movement’s backing for the “Islamic State” (IS) and its efforts to re-establish the Caliphate. The spokesman pledged that the Taliban would align their efforts with the Islamic State by sending fighters and military experts to the Middle East. In the wake of the statement, the TTP had to issue a clarification that their admiration for the actions of the Islamic State did not imply any intention to formally affiliate with it. This clarification was necessary to maintain the convenient fiction that the TTP are under the authority of the Afghan Taliban leader, Mullah Omar. Eventually the leadership had to go further and sack the spokesman.

The Future of the Taliban

This paper aims to explore the direction that the Afghan Taliban Movement is most likely to take in the wake of the death of Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour and the revelation of Mullah Omar’s death before the death of the former. It examines these phenomena through looking at a set of organizational and contextual variables, and assesses whether the Taliban is likely to join the peace process initiated by the Afghan government, in the near future.