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1996 - Taliban Take Kabul

1996_Taliban take Kabul_min.JPG

Title: 1996 - Taliban Take Kabul 

About: Militant Islamic fighters seized the Afghan capital and executed the former president Najibullah, marking the start of five years of strict Islamic rule.


The Taliban were basically a group of politically inexperienced young students who aimed to end the political mess that had been ongoing in Afghanistan since the Soviet withdrawal in 1989 and to impose a strict interpretation of Islam.

In southern Afghanistan, there was a law and order crisis. There was rampant warlordism, and the Taliban came in as a cleansing force to establish law and order and wipe out the warlords and impose Islam. They decreed amputations and executions for criminals, imposed severe restrictions on women, and banned television, considered a symbol of Western decadence. The Taliban's efforts were initially embraced by the war-ravaged Afghans.


Their rapid spread was enabled due to the training and financial support they got from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf states, as well as the USA, who initially perceived the Taliban as a stabilizing force, one that could ensure the flow of Middle Eastern oil to the West.

In the chaotic, war-ravaged provinces of Afghanistan, the Taliban were increasingly successful. In late September 1996 they were strong enough to launch an attack on Kabul, and stormed the presidential palace.  President Najibullah and his brother Ahmadzai were killed and their bodies strung up on a traffic post in a busy Kabul road, while other resistors were beaten or publicly executed by Taliban fighters.


In its efforts to control the country and impose a strict version of Islam, the Taliban became as brutal as its predecessors, killing civilians, burning houses, and destroying crops in the villages and towns it had conquered. As a result, the Afghan people became far less supportive of the new ruling government.

Decade: 1990s

Year: 1996

Region: Asia

Country: Afghanistan

Politics: Revolution

Conflict: Civil War

Society: Religion

Type: Historical Event

Impact: 5

Artist: Bryan Willian


Group: Genesis

Number: 96/100

Price: 0.5 ETH


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