• Send page
  • Print page

Dynamic interplay between religion and armed conflict in Afghanistan

31-12-2010 Article, International Review of the Red Cross, No. 880, by Ken Guest

In approaching this subject the most important thing to understand is how Afghans perceive things to be. The physical characteristics of their environment are easy to define and describe, but their character, relationship to Islam, and how the two combine and affect their mode of warfare is more complex – a knot of truly Gordian proportions.

Abstract

In approaching this subject the most important thing to understand is how Afghans perceive things to be. On to this must be grafted factors about their environment, beliefs, and character that most affect their response. The physical characteristics of their environment are easy to define and describe, but their character, relationship to Islam, and how the two combine and affect their mode of warfare is more complex – a knot of truly Gordian proportions. However, if the past is accurately factored into the present, this enables contextual understanding, which is the key to unlocking the puzzle.

Biography

Ken Guest is a former Royal Marine Commando trained for mountain and arctic warfare,who left the forces to work as a freelance journalist specializing in reporting on guerrilla warfare. He covered the Soviet-AfghanWar from 1980 to 1989, making over thirty trips with the mujahideen, and has continued to cover Afghanistan regularly to the present day, having recently spent three years living and working there. As a journalist he is a committee member of the Rory Peck Trust, a founder member of the Frontline Club and winner of a Royal Television Society Award for best investigative documentary (about Afghanistan).


Related pages