The Emergence and Motivity of the Taleban Movement. A Back-Ground to the Coming Bonn II Conference


  • Ann Wilkens

Publish date: 2011-09-15

Report number: FOI-R--3243--SE

Pages: 83

Written in: Swedish


  • Afghanistan
  • Pakistan
  • Pashtunistan
  • Taliban
  • jihad movements
  • negotiations
  • corruption
  • criminal networks


The aim to this study is to give an in depth description of those destructive forces, inside and outside of Afghanistan, that oppose the international intervention and contend its goals. Over the last few years, the Afghan Taliban have expanded their area of operations to include almost the whole country. Factors driving this development have been the increasing weakness of the Afghan government as much as the growing strength of the Taliban. As long as corruption permeates the country?s institutions, the Taliban will - in spite of the terror methods they often use - remain a political factor to be taken into account. Another prerequisite is support from Pakistan, mainly through elements within the security service. The insurgence in Afghanistan is fighting the government, as well as its international allies. It is composed by various branches. The Quetta shura led by Mullah Omar is the largest and most important. The Haqqani network recognizes Mullah Omar as its leader but has a distinct character, through its close collaboration with Pakistan?s security service, its more internationalist approach and its links to al-Qaeda. The Hezb-e Islami (Gulbuddin), HIG, on the other hand, operates independently, albeit often in cooperation with the Taliban on the local level. All these movements are based in safe havens in Pakistani areas bordering Afghanistan, in particular the semiautonomous FATA region. In FATA, a separate Pakistani Taliban movement has also come forward, which now - even if it collaborates with the Afghan organizations - primarily attacks symbols of the Pakistani state and has turned out to be more extremist than the original Taliban. Both the Afghan Taliban movements and their Pakistani counterpart collaborate with a number of Islamist jihad movements based mainly in Southern Punjab. Thus, the Taliban insurgence has become a transnational phenomenon which can no longer be treated as an Afghan internal affair.