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ALLISON CHANG The Soviet Takeover in Afghanistan December 1979-February 1989.

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Presentation on theme: "ALLISON CHANG The Soviet Takeover in Afghanistan December 1979-February 1989."— Presentation transcript:

1 ALLISON CHANG The Soviet Takeover in Afghanistan December 1979-February 1989

2 Buildup to the Soviet Invasion During 1973, General Mohammad Daud Khan, the president of Afghanistan’s centrist government came to power. He established dictatorial rule, and ruthlessly persecutes his opponents (Sehrish). He starts to depend less on the Soviet Union, and forms closer ties to Iran (“Afghanistan Profile”). General Daud

3 Buildup to the Soviet Invasion Daud was overthrown by Mohammad Taraki and his military officers. The new government was the PDPA (People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan), who worked closely with the Soviet Union to eliminate all domestic resistance. They abolished religious customs and killed anyone who obeyed traditional religious laws. Most of Afghanistan’s population at that time were devout Muslims against communism, and they were unhappy with the PDPA’s political and social reforms (“Afghanistan Profile”). The Mujahideen was the main rebel group opposing the PDPA and forcefully opposed them ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). PDPA’s Flag The PDPA

4 Buildup to the Soviet Invasion On March 1979, Hafizullah Amin, the second president of Afghanistan, took power during the communist Democratic Republic of Afghanistan after overthrowing Taraki (Wahid). It became obvious he was unable to control the rebel group, and the Soviets were forced to invade to try to keep the peace (“Soviets take over in Afghanistan”). Hafizullah Amin Soviet Propoganda

5 Reasons for Invasion The USSR was especially interested by the geopolitical foothold they could gain with a regime in Southwest Asia ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). Afghanistan was a tactical position between Asia and the Middle East that could be used to counter the U.S. alliance with Pakistan and additional Persian Gulf countries (Sehrish).

6 Reasons for Invasion If they created a stable communist government in Afghanistan, they could gain a warm-water port in the Indian Ocean. - This would offer access to central trade routes throughout the year, and it would also increase the size of USSR’s navy. They could also gain access to Afghanistan’s abundant natural resources, including natural gas, copper, uranium, and iron (“Why the Soviets Invaded Afghanistan”).

7 The Takeover On December 24, 1979, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan with 75,000 troops, which ended Amin’s presidency. Soviet air forces landed in Kabul on the 25 th, accompanied by ground troops. The USSR tried to steady the turbulent political condition by appointing Babrak Karmal as the new leader, acting as a puppet for the Soviet Union. Karmal was not popular with the Afghans, and the mujahideen rebellion continued to spread and worsen ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). Instead of the calming desired effect, the Soviet invasion infuriated the country and caused a nationalistic feeling to grow, which fueled the rebellion. Babrak Karmal A Soviet group prepares for a mission in Afghanistan, 1988

8 During the War “The Soviets imposed military and social reforms that began to make enemies within different sectors of the indigenous population” (Sehrish). Afghan tribal leaders were unhappy with these reforms that deteriorated conditions for the poor and used mass arrests, torture, and executions to stop revolts (Sehrish). Soviet forces after capturing a group of Mujahideen An Afghan is arrested

9 During the War “The Afghan War quickly settled down into a stalemate, with more than 100,000 Soviet troops controlling the cities, larger towns, and major garrisons and the mujahideen moving with relative freedom throughout the countryside” ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). The rebel guerillas were able to avoid most of the Soviet attacks, and the mujahideen gradually strengthened using war supplies donated by the United States, Pakistan, and other sympathetic Muslims in other countries. Many Afghan citizens fled to neighboring countries, mostly to Pakistan.

10 Soviet Tactics The USSR struggled to eliminate the civilian backing and attempted to stop them by dropping bombs and evacuating the people living in rural areas. They called this their “depopulation campaign”. Instead of fighting in close combat, the Soviets preferred heavy weaponry and air battle, including planes and helicopters targeting exposed countryside guerillas ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). Afghans find a Soviet missile Soviet helicopter crashes

11 Soviet Invasion Route

12 Soviet Areas of Influence

13 Afghan Tactics The rebel mujahideen counteracted the Soviet air power by using antiaircraft missiles provided by the United States. They also used guerilla hit-and-run tactics such as setting up ambushes and blowing up pipelines (Galster). The mujahideen

14 The Invasion Ends By 1988, the USSR’s attempt to implement a friendly regime in Afghanistan was unsuccessful. That year, the Soviet Union signed a treaty with Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the United States and extracted it’s troops. On February 15, 1989, after nearly 10 years of fighting, the Soviet withdrawal was finished. ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). Soviet troops withdrawSoviet tank left behind

15 The Effects- For the Soviet Union There were more than 15,000 dead and many more physically and mentally injured Soviets ("Soviet invasion of Afghanistan”). The USSR lost billions of dollars to the war, and even after the withdrawal, continued to supply help to Kabul, costing them billions each year. The people of the Soviet Union started to question their government. The combination of financial loss and public unrest (“Consequences of the War for the Soviet Union). Soviet killed in the war

16 The Effects- For Afghanistan Around one million Afghans perished during the course of the war. Because of the enduring civil war, even more have died since then. Afghanistan is still a top nation with the most refugees, around 2.6 million. To this day, Afghanistan is still in a state of political turmoil. Despite Afghanistan’s plentiful underground resources, it still remains one of the most impoverished countries with no economic or industrial growth (“Consequences of the War for Afghanistan”). A Mujahideen mourns his fellow members Afghanistan today

17 The Effects- For Afghanistan (Cont.) The country is divided between many different Islamic groups and Soviet-installed control in Kabul, each group with a different view of future Afghanistan. The fighting between Islamic factions were among the worst, making ordinary life in Afghanistan dangerous. The Taliban is the major Islamic party that rose from the mujahideen who have enforced their fundamentalist ideas over much of the country (“Consequences of the War for Afghanistan”). civil war in AfghanistanDivided Afghanistan

18 Works Cited "Afghanistan Profile." BBC News. BBC, 25 Feb Web. 02 Mar "Consequences of the War for Afghanistan." Why the Soviets Invaded Afghanistan. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar "Consequences of the War for the Soviet Union." Why the Soviets Invaded Afghanistan. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar Galster, Steve. "Afghanistan: The Making of U.S. Policy, " Volume II: Afghanistan: Lessons from the Last War. Vol. 2. N.p.: n.p., N. pag. Print. Momand, Wahid. "Hafizullah Amin." Afghanland.com. Afghanland, n.d. Web. 02 Mar Shaban, Sehrish. "The Soviet Occupation of Afghanistan." PBS Newshour. PBS, 10 Oct Web. 02 Mar "Soviet invasion of Afghanistan". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., Web. 02 Mar “Soviets take over in Afghanistan.” The History Channel website. Mar , 8:05 "Why the Soviets Invaded Afghanistan." Why the Soviets Invaded Afghanistan. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Mar


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