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HomeGeopolitical CompassWest & Centeral AsiaIs Afghan Intelligence Building a Regime of Terror With the CIA’s Help?

Is Afghan Intelligence Building a Regime of Terror With the CIA’s Help?

Author: Emran Feroz

Affiliation: Freelance

Organization/Publisher: Foreign Policy

Date/Place: February 06, 2020, U.S.

Word Count: 1950

Type of Literature: Magazine Article


Keywords: Afghanistan, KhAD, Soviet Union, CIA, NDS, War, Torture


The brutal Soviet era is apparently returning to war-torn Afghanistan as brazen human rights violations by men in uniform are coming to fore. On Dec. 27, 1979 special forces of the Red (Soviet) Army disguised as Afghan soldiers and assassinated President Hafizullah Amin, thus occupying key government installations in Kabul. Forty years later, Afghanistan, known as a graveyard of foreign occupations, is witnessing a rebirth of the same Soviet-era brutal intelligence service KhAD in the shape and face of the incumbent National Directorate of Security (NDS). Since the US invasion in the early 2000s, the war-torn country is going through a regime of brutal secret services, including NDS which targets innocent people for dissent critical of the ruling regime in Kabul. Ironically, the “rebirth of KhAD,” which is notoriously famous for killing and torturing tens of thousands of Afghan people after the bloody communist coup in 1978, is being aided by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), which is crucial for the regime of Ashraf Ghani to survive in Afghanistan. Of late, many cases where innocent civilians, even those close to government, were killed in notoriously popular “hunt-and-kill” tactics by NDS have come to fore putting pressure on government to probe. Global watchdog Human Rights Watch reports that the Afghan government-backed forces who are trained and funded by the CIA have little concern for civilian life or accountability to international law. “These abusive [Afghan] forces, which are backed by the CIA, have routinely disregarded protections to which civilians and detainees are entitled,” Patricia Gossman, HRW’s associate Asia director and the report’s author, told Foreign Policy.


By: Riyaz Ul Khaliq, CIGA Non-Resident Research Associate



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