Siege of Balkh, 1525

Siege of Balkh, 1525


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Siege of Balkh, 1525

The siege of Balkh of 1525 saw the Uzbeks capture Balkh despite Babur's efforts to defend it. Balkh is around 150 miles to the north west of Babur's then capital of Kabul, on the border of the area he claimed in Afghanistan. Babur had fought off an attack on the city in 1517, before the start of his series of expeditions to India. Over the next few years he had crossed the Indus four times, and this may have encouraged the Uzbeks to attack Balkh.

The dates of the siege are not clear. Our only real clues come from Babur's own autobiography. We know that he left Kabul at the start of his fifth expedition to India in November 1525, his departure for India having been delayed by the need to lift the siege of Balkh.

We also know that he left Kabul for Balkh soon after giving Alam Khan, the uncle of Ibrahim Lodi, sultan of Delhi, permission to depart from Kabul for Delhi, and that this departure happened in hot weather in 931 A.H. (November 1524-October 1525).

This would suggest that the siege began in the spring or summer of 1525. It was lifted after Babur's arrival at Balkh, some time in the summer. The Uzbek leaders abandoned the siege to avoid fighting Babur, but the threat to the place didn't disappear. During his march into India over the winter of 1525-26 Babur was worried about Balkh, and the place appears to have been taken by the Uzbeks soon after this, for Babur described the place as having fallen to them because of the enfeeblement of the garrison by October 1525, and it appears to have remained in their hands for some time after this.


Münster rebellion

The Münster rebellion (German: Täuferreich von Münster, "Anabaptist dominion of Münster") was an attempt by radical Anabaptists to establish a communal sectarian government in the German city of Münster – then under the large Prince-Bishopric of Münster in the Holy Roman Empire.

The city was under Anabaptist rule from February 1534, when the city hall was seized and Bernhard Knipperdolling installed as mayor, until its fall in June 1535. It was Melchior Hoffman, who initiated adult baptism in Strasbourg in 1530, and his line of eschatological Anabaptism, that helped lay the foundations for the events of 1534–35 in Münster.


Balkh

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Balkh, also called Vazīrābād, village in northern Afghanistan that was formerly Bactra, the capital of ancient Bactria. It lies 14 miles (22 km) west of the city of Mazār-e Sharīf and is situated along the Balkh River. A settlement existed at the site as early as 500 bc , and the town was captured by Alexander the Great about 330 bc . Thereafter it was the capital of the Greek satrapy of Bactria. In succeeding centuries the city fell to various nomadic invaders, including the Turks and Kushāns, until it was decisively taken by the Arabs in the 8th century. Balkh then became the capital of Khorāsān it enlarged greatly in size until under the ʿAbbāsids and Sāmānids its fame as a capital and centre of learning earned it the title of “mother of cities.” Balkh was completely destroyed by the Mongols under Genghis Khan in 1220. Thereafter it lay in ruins until, after its capture by Timur, it was rebuilt early in the 15th century. But in 1480 the alleged discovery of the tomb of ʿAlī, the Prophet Muḥammad’s son-in-law, in neighbouring Mazār-e Sharīf once again reduced Balkh to insignificance. Balkh was incorporated into Afghanistan in 1850.

The modern village of Balkh is situated amid extensive ruins, chief among them the outer walls of ancient Bactra, which are more than 7 miles (11 km) in circumference. Other remains of Balkh’s splendour include ancient Buddhist reliquary mounds and later Islamic shrines and mosques. The shrine of Khvājeh Abū Naṣr Pārsā is a remnant of its historic past. Pop. (latest est.) 7,242.


The History of India

1206, Independence of India &ndash Kutb u din &ndash Progress of a Turki Slave &ndash 1210, Aram &ndash 1211, Shams u din Altamsh &ndash 1217, Conquests of the Moguls under Chengiz Khan &ndash 1221, King of Kharizm pursued into India &ndash 1223, Returns to Persia &ndash State of Hindostan &ndash 1236, Health of Altamsh &ndash Rukn u din &ndash Sultana Rezia &ndash Her Virtues &ndash Her Weakness &ndash Rebellion &ndash 1239, The Queen defeated and put to death &ndash Moizz u din Behram &ndash Mogul Irruption into the Panjab &ndash 1241, Ala u din Masaud &ndash Mogul Irruptions &ndash 1246, Nasir u din Mahmud &ndash Gheias u din Bulbun Vizir &ndash 1253, Removal of Bulbun &ndash Discontents and Intrigues &ndash Bulbun restored &ndash 1266, Gheias u din Bulbun &ndash Bulbun puts down the Influence of the Slaves &ndash His Character &ndash 1279, Revolt of Bengal &ndash Suppressed &ndash Mogul Irruption &ndash Victory and Death of the Heir Apparent &ndash 1286, Death of Bulbun &ndash Kei Kobad &ndash Intrigues and Power of the Vizir &ndash Massacre of Mogul Mercenaries &ndash King&rsquos Interview with his Father &ndash Murder of the Vizir &ndash 1288, The King dethroned and put to death.

1288, Jehal u din &ndash Mild Government of Jelal u din &ndash Vigour of Ala u din, the King&rsquos nephew &ndash 1294, Ala u din&rsquos Invasion of the Deckan &ndash Submission of Deogiri &ndash Return to Hindostan &ndash 1295, Assassination of Jelal u din &ndash Singular Instance of Credulity and Injustice &ndash Ala u din &ndash 1297, Expedition to Guzerat &ndash Mogul Incursions &ndash 1298, Serious Invasion by the Moguls &ndash Their Defeat at Delhi &ndash 1299, Designs of the King&rsquos Nephew &ndash He attempts to assassinate the King &ndash 1299, His Failure and Death &ndash 1300, Other Disturbances quelled &ndash 1303, Capture of Chitor &ndash 1304&ndash1305, Unsuccessful Invasions of the Moguls &ndash Discontinuance of their Incursions &ndash 1306, Expedition to the Deckan &ndash Story of the Princess Dewal Devi &ndash 1309, Failure of an Expedition to Telingana &ndash 1310, Conquest of Carnata &ndash Conquest of Maaber up to Cape Comorin &ndash 1311, Massacre of Mogul Converts &ndash 1312, Taking of Deogiri, and Conquest of Maharashtra &ndash Intrigues and Influence of Cilia &ndash Revolt of Guzerat &ndash Recovery of Chitor by the Rajputs &ndash 1316, Death of Ala u din &ndash His Character &ndash His internal Policy &ndash Mobarik Khilji &ndash 1319, Conquest of Malabar &ndash Influence of Khusru, and Ascendancy of a Hindu Party at Court &ndash 1321, Murder of Mobarik, and Extirpation of his Family.

House of Toghlak &ndash 1321 to 1412 &ndash 1321, Gheias u din Toghlak &ndash 1322, Failure of an Expedition to Telingana &ndash 1323, Conquest of Telingana, and Capture of Warangol, the Capital &ndash 1325, Death of the King &ndash Mohammed Toghlak &ndash Character of Mohammed Toghlak &ndash Wild Schemes of Mohammed &ndash 1325, Projected Conquest of Persia &ndash Attempt to conquer China &ndash Introduction of Paper Money &ndash Tyranny and Exactions of the King &ndash 1338, Rebellions &ndash 1340, Permanent revolt of Bengal and of the Coast of Coromandel &ndash 1344, Restoration of the Hindu Kingdoms of Carnata and Telingana &ndash 1345&ndash6, Other Rebellions &ndash Rebellion of the Mogul Troops in Guzerat &ndash 1347, General Revolt of the Deckan &ndash Vigour and Activity of the King &ndash 1351, Death of Mohammed Toghlak &ndash Removal of the Capital to Deogiri and other Caprices of Mohammed &ndash Foreign Accounts of his Court and Government &ndash The Mahometan Territory in India at its greatest Extent in this Reign &ndash Firuz Toghlak &ndash 1356, Independence of Bengal and the Deckan recognised &ndash The King&rsquos Infirmities &ndash 1385, Rivalries at his Court &ndash 1388, His Death &ndash His Laws &ndash His public Works &ndash Gheias u din Toghlak II. &ndash 1389, Abubekr Toghlak &ndash 1390, Nasir u din Toghlak &ndash 1394, Mahmud Toghlak &ndash Dissolution of the Monarchy &ndash 1398, Invasion of Tamerlane &ndash Defeat of the Indian Army &ndash Sack, Conflagration, and Massacre of Delhi &ndash 1399, Tamerlane retires from India &ndash His Character &ndash Anarchy at Delhi &ndash Government of the Seiads &ndash 1414, Seiad Khizr Khan &ndash 1421, Seiad Mobarik &ndash 1435, Seiad Mohammed &ndash 1444, Seiad Ala u din &ndash House of Lodi &ndash 1450, Behlol Lodi &ndash Rise of the Family of Lodi &ndash Panjab re-annexed to Delhi &ndash 1478, Recovery of Juanpur &ndash 1488, Secander Lodi &ndash Good Administration of Secander &ndash His Bigotry &ndash 1517, Ibrahim Lodi &ndash Discontents and Rebellions &ndash 1521, Invasion of Baber &ndash He retreats from Sirhind &ndash December 1525, Return of Baber &ndash 1526, Defeat and Death of Ibrahim &ndash Occupation of Delhi and Agra.

Book 7 &ndash House of Teimur &ndash From the Conquest of Baber to the Accession of Akber

Descent and early Life of Baber &ndash His Wars and Adventures in his Youth &ndash He is driven out of Transoxiana &ndash 1504, Acquires the Kingdom of Cabul &ndash His Views on India &ndash 1526, Baber&rsquos Proceedings after his Victory over Ibrahim &ndash Discontent of his Troops &ndash His War with Sanga, Rana of Mewar &ndash 1527 March, Battle of Sikri &ndash Victory of Baber &ndash Settlement of the Country &ndash 1528, Siege of Chanderi &ndash Afghan Insurrection &ndash 1529, Defeat of the King of Bengal &ndash Sickness of Baber &ndash Intrigues regarding the Succession &ndash 26 December 1580, Death of Baber &ndash His Character.

1531, Arrangement with the King&rsquos Brothers &ndash Separation of Cabal from India &ndash Afghan Insurrections in India &ndash 1532, Disputes with Bahadur Shah, King of Guzerat &ndash 1534, Invasion and Conquest of Guzerat &ndash 1535, Expulsion of the Moguls from Guzerat &ndash Early Life and Rise of Shit Khan Sur &ndash He obtains Possession of Behar &ndash Conquers Bengal &ndash 1537, Humayun marches against him &ndash Military Features of Behar and Bengal &ndash January 1538, Siege of Chunar &ndash Shir Khan&rsquos Plan for resisting the Invasion &ndash 1538, June or July. Taking of Gour by Humayun &ndash His difficulties during the rainy Season &ndash Active Operations of Shir Khan &ndash Retreat of Humayun &ndash Shit Khan assumes the Title of King &ndash Intercepts Humayun on his Retreat &ndash June 1539, Surprises him and disperses his Army &ndash Second Campaign &ndash May 1540, Final Defeat of Humayun &ndash His Flight &ndash July 1540, Arrives at Lahor &ndash 1541&ndash2, Fails in an attempt on Sind &ndash Seeks refuge in Jodpur which is refused &ndash Horrors of his march through the desert &ndash 1542, Is hospitably received at Amercot &ndash 14 October 1542, Birth of Akber &ndash Second attempt on Sind &ndash 1543, Humayun consents to retire to Candahar &ndash His Dangers in that Country &ndash His Flight to Persia.

1540, Shir Shah takes possession of all Humayun&rsquos Dominions &ndash 1542, Recovers Malwa &ndash 1543, Massacres the Garrison of Raisin &ndash 1544, Invades Marwar &ndash Takes Chitor. &ndash 1545, Is killed at Calinjer &ndash His Character &ndash His internal Improvements &ndash Selim Shah Sur &ndash Selim supplants his elder Brother &ndash 1547, Quells an obstinate Rebellion &ndash 1553, Dies &ndash Account of a fanatical Sect &ndash Mohammed Shah Sur Adili &ndash Mohammed Adili murders his Nephew and usurps the Throne &ndash His Vices and Incapacity &ndash Hama, a low Hindu, made Prime Minister &ndash Vigour and Talents of Herrin &ndash Oppressive Measures of the King &ndash 1554, Rebellions &ndash Separation of Delhi and the western Provinces &ndash Revolt of the Panjab under Secander Stir &ndash 1555, Revolt of Bengal &ndash 1555, Revolt of Malwa &ndash 1555, July. Return of Humayun &ndash Success of Hemu &ndash 1556, His Defeat by Akber, and Death &ndash 1557, Death of Mohammed Adili.

1544, Reception of Humayun in Persia &ndash Account of the Safavis or Sophis &ndash Magnificence and Hospitality of Shah Tahmasp &ndash His Arrogance and Caprice &ndash Forces Humayun to profess the Shia religion &ndash Sends an Army to restore Humayun &ndash September 1545, Taking of Candahar &ndash Which is ceded to the Persians &ndash Treacherously recovered by Humayun after the Departure of the Persian army &ndash Taking of Cabul &ndash Expedition to Badakhshan &ndash Camran recovers Cabul &ndash April 1547, Is driven out by Humayun &ndash August 1548, Gives himself up to Humayun, and is kindly treated &ndash 1549, Humayun invades Balkh &ndash Fresh Rebellion of Camran &ndash Calamitous Retreat from Balkh &ndash 1550, Humayun defeated by Camran, and deserted by his army &ndash 1551, Camran again expelled &ndash September 1553, Taken and blinded &ndash January 1555, Humayun marches to recover India &ndash Defeats Secander Sur &ndash July 1555, Takes Delhi and Agra &ndash January 1556, His Death.

Book 8 &ndash State of India up to the Accession of Akber

States formed on the Dissolution of the Empire under Mahmud Toghlak &ndash Recovery of Telingana and Cantata by the Hindus &ndash Further Dismemberment of the Empire &ndash Kingdoms of the Deckan &ndash 1347&ndash1518, Bahmani Kingdom of the Deckan &ndash Increased Intercourse with the Hindus &ndash Rivalry between the Shia and Sunni sects in the Court and Army &ndash 1489&ndash1512, States formed out of the Bahmani dominions &ndash Bijapur &ndash Ahmednagar &ndash Golconda &ndash Berar &ndash Bidr &ndash Their history &ndash 1565, Battle of Talicota &ndash Fall of the Kingdom of Bijayanagar &ndash Kingdoms in Hindostan and the Adjoining Countries &ndash Guzerat &ndash Malwa &ndash Other Mahometan kingdoms &ndash The Rajput States. &ndash Change in the Condition of the Rajputs after the Mahometan Conquests in India &ndash State of the Rajput Princes at the Accession of Akber &ndash Mewar &ndash Marwar &ndash Bikanir &ndash Jesalmer &ndash Amber or Jeipur &ndash Harauti &ndash Petty States in the Desert &ndash Petty States on the East of the Table Land &ndash Other unsubdued Tracts.

Internal state of the Mahometan Empire &ndash The King&rsquos Power &ndash His Ministers &ndash Provinces &ndash Army &ndash Law (Mahometan and Common) &ndash Church &ndash Moulavis &ndash Fakirs &ndash Superstitions &ndash Sects &ndash Hindus &ndash Conversions &ndash Revenue &ndash Condition of the People &ndash State of the Country &ndash Towns and Commerce &ndash Coinage &ndash Architecture &ndash Manners &ndash Mahometan Literature &ndash Language.

1556, Accession of Akber &ndash Behram Khan &ndash Loss of Cabul &ndash 1556, November Defeat and Death of Hemu &ndash Recovery of Delhi and Agra &ndash Campaign in the Panjab &ndash Submission of Secander Sur &ndash Arbitrary Government of Behram Khan &ndash General Discontent at Court &ndash 1560, March. Akber assumes the Government &ndash Perplexity of Behram &ndash He revolts &ndash 1560, September. His Submission and Pardon &ndash His death &ndash Difficult Situation of the young King &ndash His Plan for restoring and consolidating the Empire &ndash Extent of his Territory &ndash Insubordination and Rebellions of his Officers &ndash Quelled, after a Struggle of Seven Years &ndash Affairs of Mill &ndash Nominal Government of Prince Hakim, Akber&rsquos brother &ndash 1566, Hakim invades the Panjab &ndash Revolt of the Mirzas &ndash They fly to Guzerat &ndash Miscellaneous Occurrences &ndash 1567, Foreign Affairs &ndash the Rajputs &ndash 1572&ndash1573, Conquest of Guzerat &ndash 1575&ndash1576, Conquest of Bengal &ndash State of that Province &ndash 1577, Mutiny of the Troops in Bengal and Behar &ndash Insurrection of the Afghans in Bengal &ndash 1592, Final Settlement of the Province after fifteen Years of Disturbance &ndash 1579, Revolt of Prince Hakim &ndash Reduction of Cabul &ndash 1581&ndash1593, Insurrection in Guzerat.

1586, Akber interferes in the Disputes of the Deckan &ndash Akber moves to Attok on the Indus &ndash 1586&ndash1587, Conquest of Cashmir &ndash Wars with the north-eastern Afghans &ndash Description of those Tribes and of their Country &ndash Sect of the Roushenias &ndash 1586, Destruction of the invading Army by the Eusofzeis &ndash 1600, Imperfect Settlement at the end of fifteen Years &ndash 1591, Conquest of Sind &ndash 1594, Recovery of Candahar &ndash Complete Settlement of Hindostan &ndash 1595, Expedition to the Deckan &ndash Chand Sultana &ndash Her Defence of Ahmednagar &ndash 1596, Peace agreed on &ndash War renewed and extended to the whole of the Deckan &ndash 1599, Akber goes in person to the Deckan &ndash 1600, Death of Chand Sultana &ndash Taking of Ahmednagar &ndash 1601, Conquest of Candesh &ndash Akber returns to Hindostan &ndash Refractory Conduct of his eldest Son, Selim (afterwards Jehangir) &ndash 1602, Murder of Abul Fazl &ndash 1603, Reconciliation of Akber with &Vim &ndash Continued Misconduct of Selim &ndash He is placed under Restraint and soon after released &ndash His Quarrels with his own Son, Khusru &ndash Death of Danial, Akber&rsquos third Son &ndash Sickness of Akber &ndash Intrigues regarding the Succession &ndash Unsuccessful Combination to set aside Selim &ndash 1605, 13th October. Death of Akber &ndash His Character.

His internal Policy, religious and civil &ndash His general Toleration and Impartiality &ndash Progress of his religious Opinions &ndash Feizi &ndash His Translations from the Shanscrit &ndash He superintends Translations from that and other Languages &ndash Abul Fazl &ndash Akber&rsquos Attachment to those Brothers &ndash Akber&rsquos religious and philosophical Conferences &ndash Religious System of Akber &ndash His Discouragement of the Mahometan Peculiarities &ndash His Restrictions on the Hindu Superstition &ndash His general Indulgence to Hindus &ndash Discontents among the Mussulmans &ndash Limited Progress of his own Religion &ndash His civil Government &ndash Revenue System &ndash Todar Mal &ndash Subahs or Governments, and their Establishments &ndash military, judicial, and police &ndash Reform and new Model of the Army &ndash Fortifications and public Works &ndash Household and Court.

Book 10 &ndash Jehangir &ndash Shah Jehan

1605, State of India at the Accession of Jehangir &ndash Moderate Measures at the Commencement of his Reign &ndash 1606, Flight of Prince Khusru &ndash His Rebellion &ndash Quashed &ndash Barbarous Punishment of the Rebels &ndash Imprisonment of Khusru &ndash 1607, Wars in Mewar and in the Deckan &ndash 1610, Insurrection of a pretended Khusru &ndash Ill Success of the war in the Deckan &ndash Malik Amber &ndash He recovers Ahmednagar &ndash Marriage of the Emperor with Nur Jehan &ndash Her History &ndash Her Influence &ndash Combined Attack on Ahmednagar &ndash 1612, Defeated by Malik Amber &ndash War with Mewar &ndash 1613, Victories and Moderation of Shah Jehan (Prince Khurram) &ndash 1614, The Rana submits on honourable Terms &ndash Influence of Shah Jehan &ndash Supported by Nur Jehan &ndash Insurrection in Cabul quelled &ndash 1615, Embassy of Sir T. Roe &ndash His Account of the Empire, Court, and Character of Jehangir &ndash Prince Khusru &ndash Unpopularity of Shah Jehan &ndash Prince Parviz &ndash 1616, Shah Jehan declared Heir Apparent &ndash Sent to settle the Deckan &ndash 1616, October The Emperor moves to Mandu &ndash Sir T. Roe&rsquos Description of his March &ndash 1617, Complete Success of Shah Jehan &ndash September 1617&ndash September 1618, Residence of the Emperor and Shah Jehan in Guzerat &ndash 1621, Renewal of the Disturbances in the Deckan &ndash Shah Jehan marches to quell them &ndash His Success in the Field &ndash He comes to Terms with Malik Amber &ndash Dangerous Illness of the Emperor &ndash Measures of Parviz and Shah Jehan &ndash Suspicious Death of Khusru &ndash Alienation of the Empress from Shah Jehan &ndash Candahar taken by the Persians &ndash Shah Jehan ordered to retake it &ndash His Reluctance to leave India &ndash The Enterprise committed to Prince Shehriar &ndash To whom most of Shah Jehan&rsquos Troops are transferred &ndash Mohabat Khan called to Court by the Empress &ndash 1622, Increased Distrust between the Emperor and Shah Jehan &ndash 1623, Rebellion of Shah Jehan &ndash Advance of the Emperor &ndash Retreat of Shah Jehan &ndash Its Consequences &ndash Shah Jehan retreats into Telingana &ndash 1624, Makes his Way to Bengal &ndash Obtains Possession of Bengal and Behar &ndash He is pursued by Prince Parviz and Mohabat Khan &ndash Is defeated and flies to the Deckan &ndash State of the Deckan &ndash Shah Jehan unites with Malik Amber &ndash Pressed by Parviz and Mohabat Khan &ndash Deserted by his Army &ndash 1625, Offers his Submission to the Emperor &ndash The Emperor marches against the Roushenias in Cabul &ndash Persecution of Mohabat Khan by the Empress &ndash His History &ndash He is summoned to Court &ndash Brutal Treatment of his Son-in-law by the Emperor &ndash 1626, March. Mohabat seizes on the Emperor&rsquos Person &ndash Spirited Conduct of Nur Jehan &ndash She attacks Mohabat&rsquos Camp &ndash Is repulsed with heavy Loss &ndash She joins the Emperor in his Confinement &ndash Insecurity of Mohabat&rsquos Power &ndash Artifices of the Emperor &ndash Quarrel between the Rajputs and the King&rsquos Troops &ndash Plots and Preparations of Mr Jehan &ndash 1626, September. Rescue of Jehangir &ndash Terms granted to Mohabat Khan &ndash He is sent against Shah Jehan &ndash End of 1626, He breaks with the Emperor, and joins Shah Jehan &ndash October 1627, Sickness and Death of Jehangir.

1627, October. Asof Khan takes part with Shah Jehan &ndash Imprisons the Empress &ndash Defeats Shehriar, who is put to Death &ndash 1628, January. Shah Jehan arrives from the Deckan, and is, proclaimed at Agra &ndash Local Disturbances &ndash History of Khan Jehan Lodi &ndash His Flight from Agra &ndash His Proceedings in the Deckan &ndash 1629, October. The Emperor marches against him &ndash State of the Deckan &ndash Khan Jehan driven out of Ahmednagar &ndash Pursued by Azim Khan &ndash Fails in obtaining an Asylum at Bijapur &ndash His Ally, the King of Ahmednagar, defeated &ndash Khan Jehan flies from the Deckan &ndash 1630, Is cut off in Bundelcand &ndash Continuance of the War with Ahmednagar &ndash Famine and Pestilence in the Deckan &ndash 1631, The King of Bijapur joins the King of Ahmednagar &ndash Murder of the King of Ahmednagar by his Minister, Fatteh Khan &ndash Who submits to Shah Jehan &ndash War with Bijapur continues &ndash 1632, Tergiversation of Fatteh Khan &ndash Siege of Bijapur &ndash Failure of the Siege &ndash The Emperor returns to Delhi &ndash 1633, February. Final Surrender of Fatteh Khan &ndash 1634, Ill Success of the Operations in the Deckan &ndash Shahji Bosla attempts to restore the King of Ahmednagar &ndash 1635, November. The Emperor returns to the Deckan &ndash Failure of another Attempt on Bijapur &ndash 1636, Peace with Bijapur &ndash Submission of Shahji Bosla &ndash The Emperor exacts a Tribute from Golconda &ndash 1637, Returns to Delhi &ndash Local Disturbances and Successes in Hindostan &ndash Recovery of Candahar &ndash All Merdan Khan &ndash 1641, Invasion of Balkh &ndash Services of the Rajputs in the Mountains of Hindu Cush &ndash 1645, Shah Jehan moves to Cahill &ndash Balkh reduced by Prince Morad and Ali Merdan Khan &ndash Overrun by the Usbeks from beyond the Oxus &ndash 1647, Aurangzib sent against them &ndash Is besieged in Balkh &ndash Shah Jehan abandons his Conquest &ndash Disastrous Retreat of Aurangzib &ndash 1648, Candahar retaken by the Persians &ndash 1649, Aurangzib sent to recover it &ndash Fails in the Siege of Candahar &ndash 1652, Second Attempt on Candahar under Aurangzib &ndash Its Failure &ndash Great Expedition under Prince Dara Sheko &ndash Siege of Candahar &ndash 1653, November. Failure and Retreat of Dara Sheko &ndash Death of the Vizir, Saki Ullah Khan &ndash 1655, Renewal of the War in the Deckan under Aurangzib &ndash Intrigues of Aurangzib at Golconda &ndash Mir Jumla &ndash Treacherous Attack on Heiderabad by Aurangzib &ndash Submission of the King of Golconda &ndash 1656, Unprovoked War with Bijapur.

1657, Dangerous Illness of the Emperor &ndash Characters and Pretensions of his Sons &ndash Dara She &ndash Shuja &ndash Aurangzib &ndash Morad &ndash Daughters of Shah Jehan &ndash Data administers the Government under the Emperor &ndash Rebellion of Shuja &ndash And of Morad &ndash Cautious Measures of Aurangzib &ndash His Collusion with Mir Jumla &ndash He marches to join Morad &ndash Defensive Measures of Dara &ndash Shah Jehan re-assumes the Government &ndash Shuja continues to advance on Agra &ndash Is defeated by Soliman, Son of Dara, and returns to Bengal &ndash 1658, April. Aurangzib and Morad defeat the Imperial Army under Jeswant Sing at Ujen &ndash Shah Jehan&rsquos Anxiety for an Accommodation &ndash Dara marches from Agra to oppose his Brothers, against the Wish of Shah Johan &ndash 1658, June. Is totally defeated &ndash Dara flies to Delhi &ndash Aurangzib enters Agra &ndash Shah Jehan adheres to the Cause of Dara &ndash Is confined in his Palace &ndash 1658, August. Aurangzib imprisons Morad, and openly assumes the Government &ndash High Prosperity of India under Shah Jehan &ndash Magnificence of Shah Jehan &ndash His Buildings &ndash The Taj Mahal &ndash His Economy &ndash His personal Character.

Book 11 &ndash Aurangzib (or Alamgir)

Page Soliman deserted by Jei Sing and Dilir Khan &ndash Flies to Sirinagar and is made Prisoner by the Raja &ndash 1658, July. Aurangzib marches from Delhi in pursuit of Dara &ndash Dara flies from Lahor &ndash 1658, November. Aurangzib returns to Delhi &ndash Marches against Shuja, who is advancing from Bengal &ndash Treacherous Attack on his Baggage by Jeswant Sing &ndash 1659, January. Defeat of Shuja &ndash Jeswant Sing threatens Agra and flies to Marwar &ndash Dara Sheko appears in Guzerat, and is acknowledged in that Province &ndash He sets out to join Jeswant Sing &ndash Jeswant Sing is won over by Aurangzib &ndash Abandons Dara &ndash Dara is attacked and defeated by Aurangzib &ndash Disasters of his Flight to Gazer& &ndash He is met by Bernier &ndash Ahmedabad shuts its Gates on him &ndash He flies towards Sind &ndash He is betrayed by the Chief of Jun and delivered up to Aurangzib &ndash 1659, July. He is brought to Delhi &ndash Sympathy of the People &ndash He is put to death &ndash Operations against Shuja by Prince Sultan and Mir Jumla &ndash 1659, June. Prince Sultan goes over to Shuja &ndash 1660, January. Returns to his Allegiance &ndash And is imprisoned by his Father &ndash Shuja flies to Aracan &ndash Uncertainty regarding his Fate &ndash Soliman given up by the Raja of Sirinagar &ndash 1661, November. Morad murdered in his Prison &ndash Expedition of Mir Jumla to Assam &ndash 1663, March. Death of Mir Jumla &ndash Dangerous Illness of Aurangzib &ndash Intrigues and Agitation &ndash Firmness and Self-possession of Aurangzib &ndash 1662, December. His Recovery &ndash Disturbances in the Deckan &ndash Description of the Maratta Country &ndash Account of the Nation &ndash Rise of the Bosla Family &ndash Shahji Bosla &ndash Sevaji Bosla &ndash His Robberies &ndash His Adherents &ndash He surprises a Hill Fort &ndash He usurps his Father&rsquos Jagir &ndash Obtains Possession of several Forts &ndash Revolts against the Government of Bijapur &ndash 1648, Takes Possession of the Northern Concan &ndash His Attachment to the Hindu Religion &ndash 1649, The Government of Bijapur seize Shahji as a Hostage for his Son &ndash 1653, Shahji released &ndash Renewal of Sevaji&rsquos Encroachments &ndash Plunders the Mogul Provinces &ndash 1658, Obtains Forgiveness from Aurangzib &ndash Afzal Khan sent against him from Bijapur &ndash Is assassinated by Sevaji &ndash 1659, And his Army dispersed &ndash Another Army sent from Bijapur &ndash The King of Bijapur takes the Field &ndash 1661, Recovers most of Sevaji&rsquos Conquests &ndash Sevaji makes a very favourable Peace &ndash Extent of his Territory.

1662, Sevaji&rsquos Rupture with the Moguls &ndash Shaista Khan marches against him &ndash Occupies Puna &ndash Night Exploit of Sevaji &ndash Prince Moazzim sent against him &ndash 1664, January. Sevaji plunders Surat &ndash Death of Shahji &ndash His Possessions in the South of India &ndash Maritime Exploits of Sevaji &ndash Sevaji assumes Sovereignty &ndash Raja Jei Sing sent against him &ndash 1665, Submission of Sevaji &ndash He co-operates with Jei Sing against Bijapur &ndash Goes to Delhi &ndash Haughty Reception by Aurangzib &ndash Sevaji escapes from Confinement &ndash 1666, December. Arrives at Raighar &ndash Death of Shah Jehan &ndash Prosperous State of Aurangzib&rsquos Empire &ndash Failure of Jei Sing&rsquos Attack on Bijapur &ndash His Death &ndash Return of Prince Moazzim and Jeswant Sing &ndash Progress of Sevaji &ndash He makes Peace with the Emperor &ndash Levies Tribute on Bijapur and Golconda &ndash His Internal Arrangements &ndash Schemes of Aurangzib to entrap &wail &ndash Aurangzib breaks the Peace &ndash Sevaji surprises Singhar &ndash Ravages the Mogul Territory &ndash Chout &ndash 1672, Defeats the Moguls in a Field Action &ndash Khan Jehan made Viceroy of the Deckan &ndash Suspension of active Operations in the Deckan &ndash 1673&ndash1675, Aurangzib occupied by a War with the north-eastern Afghans &ndash 1676, Aurangzib returns to Delhi &ndash Insurrection of the Satnarami Religionists &ndash Aurangzib&rsquos Bigotry &ndash His vexatious Treatment of the Hindus &ndash 1677, He revives the Jezia or Poll Tax on Infidels &ndash General Disaffection of the Hindus &ndash Oppressive Measures against the Widow and Children of Raja Jeswant Sing &ndash They escape from Delhi &ndash Combination of the Rajputs &ndash 1679, January. The Emperor marches against them &ndash Grants favourable Terms to the Rana of Mewar &ndash 1679, July. The Rana breaks the Peace &ndash Devastation of the Rajput Country &ndash Permanent Alienation of the Rajputs &ndash Prince Akber joins the Rajputs with his Army &ndash Is proclaimed Emperor &ndash Marches against Aurangzib &ndash Dangerous Situation of the Emperor &ndash His Presence of Mind &ndash Defection of Akber&rsquos army &ndash Akber flies to the Marattas &ndash Protracted War with the Rajputs.

Affairs of the Deckan resumed &ndash Sevaji&rsquos Conquests from Bijapur &ndash 1675, June. Is crowned at Raighar with additional Solemnity &ndash Makes an Incursion into the Mogul Territory &ndash 1675, And first crosses the Nerbadda &ndash Sevaji&rsquos Expedition to the South of India &ndash 1677, He takes Jinji and Vellor, and recovers all his Father&rsquos Jagir in Mysore &ndash 1678, The Moguls under Dilir Khan invade Golconda &ndash 1679, Lay Siege to Bijapur &ndash Sevaji&rsquos Son, Sambaji, deserts to the Moguls &ndash He returns to his Father &ndash Siege of Bijapur raised &ndash Death of Sevaji &ndash His Character &ndash Unsuccessful Attempt to set aside Sambaji &ndash He is acknowledged Raja &ndash Sambaji&rsquos Cruelty &ndash His Obstinacy in besieging Jinjera &ndash 1681, Joined by Prince Akber &ndash Plots against his Authority &ndash Executions &ndash Gives himself up to a Favourite, Calusha &ndash 1682, Fails at Jinjera &ndash Decline of his Affairs in the Deccan &ndash 1683, Aurangzib arrives in the Deccan &ndash His Views &ndash 1684, His first Operations &ndash Destruction of Prince Moazzim&rsquos Army in the Concan &ndash Invasion of Bijapur &ndash 1685, Sambaji ravages the Country in the Emperor&rsquos Rear &ndash Failure of the Invasion of Bijapur &ndash Sambaji plunders Baruch &ndash Aurangzib invades Golconda &ndash Makes Peace with the King &ndash Aurangzib in Person moves against Bijapur &ndash 1686, October 15. Takes the Capital and destroys the Monarchy &ndash Aurangzib breaks the Peace with Golconda &ndash 1687, September. Takes the Capital and subverts the Monarchy &ndash Imprisons Prince Moazzim &ndash Effects of these Conquests &ndash Disordered State of the Deckan &ndash 1688, Aurangzib takes possession of Bijapur and Golconda, as far as Tanjore &ndash Inactivity of Sambaji &ndash Prince Akber goes to Persia &ndash Sambaji made Prisoner &ndash 1689, August. Put to death &ndash Weakness of the Marattas &ndash Aurangzib sends a Detachment to besiege Raighar &ndash Regency of Raja Ram &ndash 1690, Raighar taken &ndash Raja Rain escapes to Jinji &ndash Is proclaimed Raja &ndash System of Defence adopted by the Marattas &ndash Zulfikar Khan sent to reduce Jinji &ndash 1692, Marattas renew the War by desultory Operations under independent Leaders &ndash Comparison of the Mogul and Maratta Armies &ndash 1694, Siege of Jinji committed to Prince Cambakhsh &ndash Disgust of Zulfikar &ndash He obstructs the Siege &ndash 1697, Santaji Gorpara advances to raise the Siege &ndash Cambakhsh placed under Restraint by Zulfikar &ndash Retreat of the Besiegers &ndash Aurangzib cantons on the Mina &ndash Releases Cambakhsh &ndash Increased Disaffection of Zulfikar &ndash He renews the Siege, but protracts the Operations &ndash Resentment of the Emperor &ndash 1698, January &ndash Jinji taken.

Dissensions among the Marattas &ndash Murder of Santaji Gorpara &ndash 1699, Raja Ram takes the Field in Person &ndash New Plan of Aurangzib &ndash a besieging and a pursuing Army &ndash Exhaustion of the Moguls &ndash Sieges by the Emperor in Person &ndash 1700, Takes Sattara &ndash Death of Raja Ram &ndash 1701, Aurangzib goes on taking Forts &ndash Spirit and Perseverance of Aurangzib &ndash Difficulties and Hardships to which he was exposed &ndash His indefatigable Industry &ndash His Attention to Details &ndash His Distrust of all around him &ndash His Management of his Sons and Courtiers &ndash Increased Disorders of the State &ndash 1702, Successes of the Marattas &ndash 1705, They begin to recover their Forts &ndash Exhausted State of the Army &ndash Disorder of the Finances &ndash Grand Army hard pressed by the Marattas &ndash 1706, Retreats to Ahmednagar &ndash Declining Health of the Emperor &ndash His Fears of encountering the Fate of Shah Jehan &ndash His Suspicions of his Sons &ndash His Alarms at the Approach of Death &ndash 1707, February. His Death &ndash And Character &ndash His Letters &ndash Miscellaneous Transactions.

Book 12 &ndash Successors of Aurangzib

Bahadur Shah &ndash Contest between Prince Azim and his elder Brother, Prince Moazzim &ndash 1707, June. Victory of Moazzim, henceforward Bahadur Shah &ndash Revolt of Prince Cambakhsh in the Deckan &ndash 1708, February. His Defeat and Death &ndash Bahadur&rsquos Proceedings in the Deckan &ndash State of the Marattas &ndash Factions of Raja Saho and Tara Bai &ndash Daud Khan Panni left in charge of the Deckan for Zulfikar Khan &ndash Makes a Truce with the Marattas &ndash Transactions with the Rajputs &ndash 1709, Peace with that Power &ndash End of the fifteenth Century, Rise of the Siks &ndash Peaceful Character of their Sect &ndash 1606, Persecuted by the Mahometans &ndash Their Revolt &ndash Guru Govind &ndash He forms the Siks into a religious and military Commonwealth &ndash Their Doctrines and Manners &ndash They are overpowered at first &ndash Their Fanaticism &ndash Their Successes, Ravages, and Cruelties under Bandu &ndash 1710, Bahadur marches against them &ndash They are driven into the Hills &ndash Escape of Bandu &ndash 1712, February. Death of Bahadur Shah &ndash Contest between his Sons &ndash Artifices of Zulfikar Khan &ndash He secures the Victory to Jehandar Shah &ndash Jehandar Shah &ndash 1712, May or June. Accession of Jehandar Shah &ndash His Incapacity &ndash Arrogance of Zulfikar Khan &ndash General Discontent &ndash Revolt of Prince Farokhsir in Bengal &ndash He is supported by Abdullah and Hosen Ali, Governors of Behar and Allahabad &ndash Defeats the Imperial Army &ndash Zulfikar betrays Jehandar Shah to the Enemy &ndash 1713, February. But is put to death along with the Emperor &ndash Farokhsir. &ndash Great Power of the Seiads Abdullah and Hosen All ib. &ndash Jealousy of the Emperor &ndash His Intrigues &ndash Hosen All sent against Ajit Sing, Raja of Marwar &ndash Makes an honourable Peace &ndash Increased Distrust &ndash Submission of the Emperor &ndash Hosen All marches to settle the Deckan &ndash Farokhsir instigates Daud Khan Panni to resist him &ndash 1716, Defeat and Death of Daud Khan &ndash Renewed Devastations of the Siks &ndash They are defeated and nearly extirpated &ndash Cruel Execution of Bandu &ndash Progress of the Marattas &ndash Chin Kilich Khan (afterwards Asof Jah) &ndash Ill success of Hosen Ali &ndash 1717, He makes Peace with Raja Saho, and submits to pay the Chout &ndash Farokhsir refuses to ratify the Treaty &ndash State of the Court of Delhi &ndash Abdullah Khan &ndash Plots of Farokhsir &ndash Combination of great Nobles to support him &ndash His Levity and Irresolution &ndash Disgusts his Confederates &ndash 1718, December. Return of Hosen Ali, accompanied by 10,000 Marattas &ndash Farokhsir deposed and put to death &ndash Nominal Emperors set up by the Seiads &ndash 1719, February. Rafi u Dirjat &ndash 1719, May, Ran u Doula.

Mohammed Shah &ndash 1719, September. Mohammed Shah &ndash General Indignation against the Seiads &ndash Internal Dissensions of their Party &ndash Insurrections &ndash Proceedings of Asof Jah &ndash 1720, April. He establishes his Power in the Deckan &ndash 1720, June and July. Defeats the Armies of the Seiads &ndash Alarm at Delhi &ndash Prudent Conduct of Mohammed Shah &ndash His Plans against the Seiads &ndash Mohammed Amin Khan &ndash Sadat Khan &ndash Hosen Ali marches against Asof Jah, accompanied by the Emperor &ndash 1720, October. Assassination of Hosen Ali &ndash The Emperor assumes the Government &ndash Difficult Situation of Abdullah Khan &ndash He sets up a new Emperor &ndash Assembles an Army &ndash 1720, November. Is defeated and taken Prisoner &ndash 1721, Sudden Death of Mohammed Amin, the new Vizir &ndash Rapid Decline of the Monarchy &ndash 1722, January. Asof Jah Vizir &ndash Indolence of the Emperor &ndash His Favourites &ndash His Dislike to Asof Jah &ndash Asof Jah sent against the refractory Governor of Guzerat &ndash Quells the Insurrection and retains the Government of the Province &ndash Expedition against the Jats of Bhartpur &ndash Disgust of Asof Jah &ndash 1723, October. He resigns his Office, and sets off for the Deckan &ndash The Emperor instigates Mobariz Khan, Governor of Heiderabad, to supplant him &ndash 1724, October. Mobariz defeated and slain &ndash Asof Jah&rsquos policy towards the Marattas &ndash Consolidation of the Maratta Government &ndash Balaji Wiswanat Peshwa &ndash Establishes the Government of Saito &ndash October, 1720, Dies &ndash His complicated Revenue System &ndash His Motives &ndash Baji Rao Peshwa &ndash His enterprising Policy &ndash Character of Sabo &ndash Of Bali Rao &ndash Baji Rao ravages Malwa &ndash 1725, Obtains a Cession by the Governor of the Chout of Guzerat &ndash 1725&ndash1729, Asof Jah foments the Dissensions of the Marattas &ndash 1729, He is attacked, and compelled to make Concessions &ndash 1730, Accommodation between Sao and his Rival, Samba &ndash Renewed Intrigues of Asof Jah &ndash Dabari, a great Maratta Chief in Guzerat &ndash Marches to depose the Peshwa &ndash 1731, Is anticipated by Baji Rao, defeated, and killed &ndash Moderation of Bali Rao in settling Guzerat &ndash Origin of the Families of Nat., Holcar, and Sindia &ndash Compromise between Baji Rao and Asof Jah &ndash Raja Abhi Sing of Marwar, Viceroy of Guzerat &ndash Procures the Assassination of Pilaji Geikwar &ndash Retaliation of the Marattas &ndash Abhi Sing retires to Marwar &ndash 1732, Successes of Baji Rao in Malwa, &ndash Obtains Possessions in Bundelcand &ndash Raja Jei Sing (the 2d), Viceroy of Malwa &ndash 1731, His tacit Surrender of the Province to the Marattas &ndash 1736, Baji Rio increases his Demands &ndash Further Cessions by the Emperor &ndash Alarm of Asof Jah &ndash He is reconciled to the Emperor &ndash 1737, Baji Rao appears before Delhi &ndash He retreats &ndash Arrival of Asof Jah at Delhi &ndash Marches against Baji Rao &ndash Is attacked by Baji Rao near Bopal &ndash And constrained to make great Cessions on the Emperor&rsquos part &ndash 1738, Invasion of Nadir Shah &ndash Previous Transactions in Persia &ndash Western Afghans &ndash Ghiljeis &ndash Abdalis (or Duranis) &ndash 1708, Revolt of the Ghiljeis &ndash 1720&ndash1722, Conquest of Persia by the Ghiljeis &ndash Their tyrannical Government &ndash Their Wars with the Turks and Russians &ndash Rise of Nadir Shah &ndash 1729, He drives out the Ghiljeis, and recovers Khorasan from the Abdalis &ndash Renewed Invasion of the Abdalis &ndash February 1731, Nadir takes Herat &ndash And gains the Attachment of the Abdalis &ndash August 1731, He deposes Tahmasp Shah &ndash February 1736, Is himself elected King &ndash He suppresses the Shia Religion &ndash Invades the Ghiljeis &ndash March 1738, Takes Candahar &ndash His conciliatory Policy &ndash 1738, His Difference with the Government of India &ndash Supineness of the Court of Delhi &ndash Nadir invades India &ndash 1739, February. Defeats Mohammed Shah &ndash March 1739, Advances to Delhi &ndash Insurrection of the Inhabitants &ndash General Massacre by the Persians &ndash Nadir&rsquos Extortions &ndash His Rapacity and Violence &ndash He prepares to return &ndash The Country west of the Indus ceded to him &ndash May 1739, Mohammed Shah restored &ndash Amount of the Treasures carried off by Nadir Shah.

Deplorable Condition of the Capital and of the Empire &ndash Internal Dissensions &ndash Proceedings of the Marattas &ndash Baji Rao resumes offensive Operations &ndash Attacks Asof Jah&rsquos Possessions &ndash 1740, Is repulsed by Asof&rsquos Son, Nasir Jang &ndash Perplexed Affairs of Bail Rao &ndash 1740, April. His Death. &ndash His Sons &ndash Wars in the Concan before Baji Rao&rsquos Death &ndash With Angria &ndash With the Abyssinians of Jinjera &ndash With the Portuguese &ndash Balaji Rao &ndash Domestic Enemies of Baji Rao &ndash The Pirti Nidhi, Raguji Bosla &ndash Damaji Geikwar &ndash Their Intrigues to prevent Balaji succeeding to the Office of Peshwa &ndash 1740, August. Success of Balaji &ndash 1742, Balaji marches into Malwa &ndash Revives his Father&rsquos Demands on the Court of Delhi &ndash Invasion of Bengal by Raguji Bosla &ndash The Emperor purchases the Aid of Balaji by the formal Cession of Malwa &ndash 1743, Balaji defeats and drives out Raguji &ndash Fresh Combinations against the Peshwa &ndash He buys over Raguji by liberal Cessions &ndash Raguji again invades Bengal &ndash His General murdered by the Viceroy &ndash 1751, He ultimately obtains the Chout of Bengal, and a Cession of Cattac &ndash Affairs of Asof Jah &ndash 1741, Revolt of Nasir Jang &ndash Asof Jah returns to the Deckan &ndash 1748, His Death &ndash 1749, Death of Saho Raja &ndash Intrigues and Contests for the Succession &ndash Boldness and Address of Balaji &ndash Alleged Abdication in favour of Mari &ndash 1750, Mail takes Possession of the Government &ndash March 1751, Marches against Salabat Jang, the son of Asof Jah &ndash He is recalled by the Insurrection of Tara Bai and Damaji Geikwar &ndash Balaji seizes Damaji by Treachery &ndash December 1751, Salabat Jang advances on Pena &ndash Superiority of the Invaders &ndash M. Bussy &ndash Balaji is saved by a Mutiny of Salabat&rsquos Army &ndash 1752, An Armistice concluded &ndash Transactions at Delhi resumed &ndash Rise of the Rohillas &ndash 1745, The Emperor marches against them &ndash Fresh Invasions from the Side of Persia &ndash 1748, Revolutions in that Country &ndash Tyranny of Nadir Shah &ndash His fears of the Shins &ndash He puts out the Eyes of his Son &ndash His intolerable Cruelties &ndash His Favour to the Afghans &ndash June 1747, He is assassinated by the Persians &ndash Retreat of the Afghans &ndash Ahmed Khan Abdali &ndash October 1747, Ahmed crowned King at Candahar &ndash Changes the name of Abdalis to Duranis &ndash His skilful Management of his unruly Subjects &ndash His Views on India &ndash He occupies the Panjab &ndash He is repulsed by an Indian Army under Prince Ahmed, the Heir Apparent &ndash April 1748, Death of Mohammed Shah.

Ahmed Shah &ndash Internal Arrangements of the new King &ndash 1748, December. Attempts to subdue the Rohillas by Safdar Jang, the Vizir &ndash 1750, The Vizir marches against them in Person, and is defeated &ndash 1751, He calls in the Marattas &ndash Who compel the Rohillas to submit &ndash Defeat of the Imperial Troops in Marwar &ndash Second Invasion of Ahmed Shah Durani &ndash 1752, Cession of the Panjab &ndash Discontent of Safdar Jang, the Vizir &ndash He assassinates the Emperor&rsquos Favourite &ndash Ghazi u din the younger &ndash Resists the Vizir &ndash Calls in the Marattas and expels the Vizir &ndash The Emperor plots against Ghazi u din &ndash 1751, Is defeated and deposed &ndash Alamgir &ndash 1754, June 2. Ghazi u din, Vizir &ndash His violent Government &ndash His Life in Danger in a Mutiny &ndash His Suspicions of the Emperor &ndash 1756, His treacherous Seizure of Ahmed Shah Durani&rsquos Governor of the Panjab &ndash Third Invasion of Ahmed Shah &ndash He takes Delhi &ndash Massacres and Exactions &ndash 1757, June. His Return to his own Dominions &ndash His Arrangements for the Protection of Alamgir II. against Ghazi u din &ndash Najib u doula, Minister &ndash Ghazi u din applies for the Assistance of the Marattas &ndash Previous Transactions of that Nation &ndash Ragoba, the Peshwa&rsquos Brother, marches to support Ghazi u din &ndash 1758, Takes Delhi &ndash Escape of the Heir Apparent &ndash And of Najib u doula &ndash May 1758, Ragoba takes Possession of the Panjab &ndash Plans of the Marattas for the Conquest of Hindostan &ndash General Combination of the Mahometan Princes &ndash The Marattas invade Rohilcand &ndash September 1759, Fourth Invasion of Ahmed Shah &ndash Murder of Alamgir II. by Ghazi u din &ndash Events after the Death of Alamgir II. &ndash The Maratta Troops in Hindostan dispersed by Ahmed Shah &ndash Power of the Marattas at its Zenith &ndash Their Army &ndash Great Preparations for the Contest in Hindostan &ndash Arrogance of the Commander Sedasheo Bhao &ndash He takes Delhi &ndash Ahmed Shah&rsquos Negotiation with Shuja u doula &ndash Who joins the Mahometan Confederacy &ndash Ahmed Shah marches against Sedasheo Bhao &ndash October 1760, His bold Passage of the Jamna &ndash Marattas retire to Panipat and intrench their Camp &ndash Their Numbers &ndash Force under Ahmed Shah &ndash Protracted Operations &ndash Failure of the Maratta Supplies &ndash 6 January 1761, Battle of Panipat &ndash Destruction of the Maratta Army &ndash Despondency of the Maratta Nation &ndash Death of the Peshwa &ndash Dissolution of the Mahometan Confederacy &ndash Extinction of the Mogul Empire.

Bahmani Kings of the Deckan &ndash 1347, Hassan Gangu, an Afghan of Delhi &ndash Wars with the Hindus &ndash Conquest of Rajamandri and Masulipatam &ndash Partial Conquest of the Concan &ndash Dynasty of Adil Shah at Bijapur &ndash 1489, Founded by Eusof Adil Shah, a Turkish Slave &ndash Extent of the Kingdom &ndash Attempt to introduce the Shia Religion &ndash Religious Factions &ndash Rise of the Marattas &ndash Wars with the other Mahometan Kings &ndash League against Bijayanagar &ndash Wars with the Portuguese &ndash Dynasty of Nizam Shah at Ahmednagar &ndash 1490, Founded by Ahmed, a Hindu Convert &ndash Religious Factions &ndash Wars with the other Kings of the Deckan &ndash Miscellaneous Facts &ndash Extent of the Kingdom &ndash Dynasty of Kutb Shah at Golconda &ndash 1512, Founded by Kutb Kuli, a Turkman Soldier &ndash Kutb professes the Shia Religion &ndash Extent of his Kingdom &ndash Conquests from the Hindus &ndash Wars with the other Mahometan Kings &ndash 1550, Ibrahim, the fourth King &ndash His Wars &ndash Conquests on the Coast of Coromandel &ndash Dynasty of Imad Shah in Berar &ndash 1481, Founded by Fatteh Ullah, descended from a converted Hindu &ndash Dynasty of Barid Shah at Bidr &ndash Guzerat &ndash Description of Guzerat &ndash Original Extent of the Kingdom &ndash 1396, Founded by Mozaffer, the Son of a Rajput Convert &ndash His Wars &ndash His Occupation and subsequent Evacuation of Malwa &ndash 1411, Ahmed Shah &ndash His Wars with Malwa and his Hindu Neighbours &ndash And with other Mahometan Kings &ndash Mohammed Shah &ndash 1451, Kutb Shah &ndash His Wars with Mewar &ndash Daud Khan &ndash 1459, Mahmud Begarra &ndash His vigorous Government &ndash He rescues the Bahmani King of the Deckan &ndash Marches to the Indus &ndash Takes Girnar and Champaner &ndash His Wars with Mahometan Kings &ndash His maritime Power &ndash 1508, He co-operates with the Mamluks of Egypt in a naval War with the Portuguese &ndash 1511, Mozaffer II. &ndash Generosity to the King of Malwa &ndash War with Sanga, Rana of Mewar &ndash 1526, Bahadur &ndash Takes Part in the Wars of the Deckan &ndash His Supremacy acknowledged by the Kings of Candesh, Relit., and Ahmednagar &ndash 1531, Conquest of Malwa, and its Annexation to Guzerat &ndash Troubles in Wawa &ndash War with Mewar &ndash War with Humayun and Expulsion of Bahadur &ndash 1535, Bahadur recovers his Kingdom &ndash Disputes with the Portuguese at Diu &ndash Interview with the Portuguese Viceroy &ndash Death of Bahadur &ndash Miran Mohammed Shah &ndash Mahmud III. &ndash Ahmed II. &ndash 1561, Mozaffer III. &ndash 1572, Guzerat conquered by Akber &ndash Malwa &ndash 1401, Founded by Dilawar, of a Family from Ghor &ndash Wars in Hindostan and the Deckan &ndash 1512, Mahmud II. &ndash Ascendancy of Medni Rai, a Hindu Chief &ndash Mahmud flies to Guzerat &ndash 1519, Is restored by Bahadur Shah &ndash Is defeated, taken Prisoner, and released by Sanga, Rana of Mewar &ndash His Ingratitude &ndash 1531, He is defeated, and his Kingdom annexed to Guzerat &ndash Candesh &ndash Founded by Malik Raja, a Person of Arab Descent &ndash Prosperity of Candesh &ndash 1599, Conquered by Akber &ndash 1338&ndash1576, Bengal &ndash 1394&ndash1476, Juanpur &ndash Sind &ndash Multan.

This collection transcribed by Chris Gage


Alternate History: Post Battle of Pavia (1525)

So I'm aware that the Battle of Pavia (1525) and some particular counterfactual scenarios have been aired on this alternatehistory.com forum before, however, in this I aim to ask a different question about which I hope to generate some enlightened (and civilised) discussion.

For those who would like some additional information on the military tactics deployed during the Battle of Pavia itself, I would recommend

as one starter-friendly source of information.

Anyway, time to dive into the crux of this thread. We all know that the outcome of Pavia was a crushing defeat for the French forces at the hands of the Habsburg forces (predominantly Spanish). An entire generation of French nobility was considerably dented, if not almost wiped out. Moreover, King Francis I endured the humiliation of being captured and sent to Madrid. In military terms, the scale of the defeat was crushing: French forces suffered in the range of 13,500 casualties (injured and killed) while the Habsburg forces only recorded 1,500.

So. what if the Habsburg forces had killed both Francis I and King Henry II of Navarre during the Battle of Pavia? The precedent exists for killing the enemy King should he be engaged in the battle at hand: one can look to Battle of Flodden and the death of King James IV of Scotland to the English forces as a case in point. The most obvious immediate outcome would be that the eldest son, 7 year old Francis, would succeed his late father as King Francis II of France, with his mother Louise of Savoy acting as regent (as she did IOTL after the capture of Francis I). As for Navarre, the sister of Henry II would likely become Queen Isabella I, which may present the Spanish with an opportunity to claim the Kingdom of Navarre through the maternal great grandfather of Charles V & I (King John II of Aragon and Navarre)

  1. Henry VIII of England shall become Henry II of France, bringing about a personal union between England and France. The Crown of France is to be inherited by his heirs in line with the rules of succession to the Crown of England.
  2. Certain lands that formed part of France as at February 1525 shall be separated from the Crown of France and instead form part of the Habsburg realm. This could include:
    • Duchy of Milan
    • South East and East France, specifically:
      • Provence
      • Montpellier
      • Narbonne
      • Forcalquier
      • Viviers
      • Lyonnais
      • Dauphiné
      • Charolais
      • Dijonnais
      • Auxerrois and
      • Barrois.
  3. The Duchy of Brittany would become a semi-autonomous duchy, though ultimately a vassal of Henry VIII & II. Since the Duchy of Brittany had become inherited by the Kings of France through personal union, a new duke/duchess would have to be found ITTL. Outside of the house of Dreux-Montfort or the house of Valois, I would suggest that the next best alternative is Renée de Rieux (La Belle Châteauneuf), daughter of the prominent Breton nobleman, martial and regent John (Jean) IV de Rieux.

Another factor weighing against France is that the majority of its standing army has just been destroyed and routed at the Pavia, plus a King and an entire generation of noblemen wiped out and hostile forces would be bearing down on France from all sides (English from Calais pushing south towards Paris, Spanish pushing west from Italy to Provence then up towards Burgundy, Bretons pushing east towards Le Mans and Tours and the Habsburg Netherlands pushing south towards Reims and Troyes). Logistically, the Anti-French Coalition will no-doubt find it difficult to coordinate their attacks, however, these would pale in comparison to the utter breakdown of the French state brought about for the aforementioned reasons. Assuming best case scenario for France ITTL, she would only find sympathy from the Papal States (IOTL), the Ottoman Empire (IOTL) and possibly Savoy since Duke Charles III is the brother of Louise.

If one were to take the above counterfactual as the most likely, the Ottomans IOTL took a full 6 months to initiate an offensive into Hungary, at the Battle of Mohács. I expect ITTL that France could be brought to its knees by the end of July 1525. The warming weather would facilitate the quick progress of the Anti-French coalition forces across France from all the different sides. Mean march speed for an army in 1500s as far as I know is

22 miles per day. French forces would likely be too disorganised to launch any counteroffensive of note until well into April. By this time, I expect Spanish forces to be near Lyon, English forces to have taken Amiens, Reims to have fallen to the Habsburg Netherlands and the Bretons to have captured Le Mans and Tours.

The interesting question is. what would happen to Francis, Henry and Charles (the three sons Francis I had with Louise)? For legitimacy reasons, would Henry VIII need to be rid of them? Perhaps a creative solution could be found? E.g. since Henry VIII and his wife Katherine had yet to have a surviving son, maybe they could adopt the sons and bind the two houses to create a Tudor-Valois dynasty by having Francis (then Henry, after the death of Francis in 1536 per IOTL) betrothed to Mary (daughter of Henry VIII)? Henry VIII could reign as King of France, with Francis (then Henry post the death of Francis) as heir. There was precedent for adoption in the Roman times, Byzantium and sporadically in other European countries.

As for the Papal States, I suspect the Pope could be bought out by gold and land (perhaps by returning Avignon and granting some Italian lands). IOTL, Pope Clement VII became an ally of Charles V & I. Savoy would hardly put up a whimper, let alone a fight.

  • For England --- reclaiming lost lands in France and establishing a secure position for the continental holdings and the British isles that is free from the threat of a powerful and hostile enemy on the continent
  • For the Habsburgs --- removing the meddling, rivalry and thorn in the side that was Valois France and gaining a powerful ally to assist with the upcoming wars against the Ottomans.
  • How likely do you think this scenario could have been, had Charles V & I more actively sought to coordinate with Henry VIII? IOTL England ended up switching sides in 1526 to support France in the Italian Wars, however, with the potential to rule all of France and recreate the Angevin Empire I suspect Henry VIII (English then British monarchs were crowned King/Queen of France up until 1800) would hardly have turned this down.
  • What would the potential consequential effects be? Would England have remained Catholic? Or would it still have undergone a Reformation and detached from the pope, but perhaps retained a Church of England that is more Catholic in its practices and substance?
  • Would Henry VIII still have sought to annul the marriage with Katherine?
  • Would the English have sought to expand into colonial empire, or simply have been satisfied with the newly acquired Kingdom of France?
  • Would the Ottomans be pushed back much earlier ITTL when facing the alliance between England (in personal union with France), the Habsburg domains and the Pope?
  • Would the dominance of the Habsburgs (both Austria and Spain) have greater longevity than IOTL?
  • Would the people of France accept this settlement? Would it depend on how the English ruled France and managed the nobility (e.g. in an inclusive and cooperative way vs. in an exclusionary and oppressive way)
  • Are there certain elements ITTL that are too far-fetched to be plausible?

Alexmilman

IMO, the main problem with that grand schema is a combination of three assumptions: (a) that France as a military force had been completely whipped out after Pavia, (b) that a major invasion of France was technically feasible and (c) that Charles seriously intended to fulfill his promises to Henry. None of them is quite correct so the majestic schema is build upon the sand.

Yes, many French aristocrats had been killed at Pavia but French aristocracy and nobility was far from being whipped out by a simple reason: most of it did not participate in the campaign and a part of the French army simply did not participate in the battle. Some of the top leaders, like Montmorency, were captured and then released. What is more important, France was in a better financial position than Charles who could not pay his troops (hence the Sack of Rome) and in OTL in 1528 the French troops under Odet de Foix (Lautrec) besieged the Naples, which clearly indicates that France had both aristocrats and the troops. BTW, by that time the French army, while still being obsolete, moved from the “knightly” medieval army to a more modern model: at Pavia the cavalry amounted to less than 25% of the total and the army had a strong artillery. Even with the OTL defeats France was capable to maintain a military effort for the next 2+ decades and quite often acting aggressively.

As was demonstrated by the OTL experience, a strategic invasion deep into the French territory was practical impossibility for the armies of that period: they did not have the needed numbers and logistics. Charles did try in 1536 and could not even take Marseille. Even less practical would be a campaign of conquest needed for implementing partitioning of France. A little bit too late for the independent Brittany as well: it already had a Duke Franci III who also happened to be a Dauphin of France and in your scenario becomes Francis II of France.

In OTL when after Pavia Henry VIII applied for his share of the spoils he got a polite version of “screw you” as a response (and the same goes for a “mini-kingdom” promised to the Connetable of Bourbon): there was no reason for Charles to get a Franco-English kingdom threatening the Netherlands and potentially inheriting the old French ambitions. Needless to say that this was an end of the love affair between Henry and Charles with a resulting Anglo-French anti-Hapsburg treaty. Anyway, at that time as far as the continental affairs had been involved, England was a relatively small potato in a category “nice to have” but hardly a decisive strategic partner. For Charles it was convenient to have it as a factor which could provide some French distraction from the Italian front but that’s it. Not that Henry had realistic ideas about his real values, which doomed him to the disappointments and regular shifts of the alliances (out of which he was usually getting nothing or close to nothing).

Brita

Why not Renée of France? She was the rightful heiress after all and still unmarried at the time so her Breton relatives could try and find her a suitable husband (maybe a Rohan as they also had a claim to the duchy and it would unite their families).

I like the idea of adoption. There hadn't been any female ruler in England at the time (except Matilda of course) but since succession through women was possible I can see Henry marrying his daughter to one of the boys. If they have at least one son, the succession should be secured.

I don't think the French would accept it easily. As @alexmilman says, even though Pavia was an important defeat, the nobility wasn't wiped out. They hadn't wanted to have an English king as king of France in 1328, so I don't think they'll agree to have one two centuries later. Henry VIII might eventually succeed but I think he'll have a lot to do (maybe buy support from important French noblemen?

An idea that suddenly popped up: what if Henry has Francis's son crowned King of France with himself as regent? The French will grumble of course but Francis II (and after his death his brother Henry II) remains the rightful heir. Then Henry arranges the marriage of his daughter with Henry II their son inherits both thrones.

Also, I think the laws of the conquered provinces should be respected. If the instituions remain the same, maybe the nobility and the people might be less reluctant than if they're imposed English laws.

  • What would the potential consequential effects be? Would England have remained Catholic? Or would it still have undergone a Reformation and detached from the pope, but perhaps retained a Church of England that is more Catholic in its practices and substance?
  • Would Henry VIII still have sought to annul the marriage with Katherine?

Brita

Alexmilman

The problem with Connetable was that after he switched sides he was despised both by the French and the Spaniards. When Charles the Duke of Medina Sidonia (IIRC) to allow Bourbon to stay in his palace during visit to Spain the answer was that as the loyal subject the duke can refuse his sovereign but after the visit is over he would have to burn palace to the ground as defouled by the presence of a traitor. Charles dropped any ideas regarding awarding him with a quasi Kingdom after Pavia and he reminded just a mercenary general.

Now, as far as Henry’s regency is involved (you mentioned this in another post), why would anybody even propose such a thing if there were quite capable Valois females available? Louis of Savoy was acting as aregent of France in the absence of FI so why would anybody even consider the English option?

Brita

The problem with Connetable was that after he switched sides he was despised both by the French and the Spaniards. When Charles the Duke of Medina Sidonia (IIRC) to allow Bourbon to stay in his palace during visit to Spain the answer was that as the loyal subject the duke can refuse his sovereign but after the visit is over he would have to burn palace to the ground as defouled by the presence of a traitor. Charles dropped any ideas regarding awarding him with a quasi Kingdom after Pavia and he reminded just a mercenary general.

Now, as far as Henry’s regency is involved (you mentioned this in another post), why would anybody even propose such a thing if there were quite capable Valois females available? Louis of Savoy was acting as aregent of France in the absence of FI so why would anybody even consider the English option?

True, in this case and since the Connetable's childless in 1525, the French may well decide to acknowledge Charles IV of Bourbon-Vendôme directly.

You're right. I didn't think of them. But if Henry wants to get France, he'd probably push for a pro-English regent. Louise of Savoy or even her daughter Marguerite would do as regents but then Henry's going to have a lot of trouble taking France.

Alexmilman

But the problem with that idea is that he has neither diplomatic nor military tools for pushing for such a candidacy. More than that, if he (with the halo of the friendly ASBs ) achieved some success in that area, most probably Charles would join his resources with France to guarantee that nothing would happen because this would be against his interests.

Henry’s chances to end with the crown of France on his head never were more than a delusion: Charles was ready to maintain it only for as long as it was suiting his interests. Think objectively, why (*) would Charles want Franko-English Union in any form or shape? Just for the fun of fighting more wars against a stronger opponent?

OTOH, as you already noticed, there was no enthusiasm in France for the English monarch and, as I keep saying, even allied (forget just English) conquest of France was unrealistic.

__________
(*) outside of “wank England” universe

Isabella

So I'm aware that the Battle of Pavia (1525) and some particular counterfactual scenarios have been aired on this alternatehistory.com forum before, however, in this I aim to ask a different question about which I hope to generate some enlightened (and civilised) discussion.

For those who would like some additional information on the military tactics deployed during the Battle of Pavia itself, I would recommend

as one starter-friendly source of information.

Anyway, time to dive into the crux of this thread. We all know that the outcome of Pavia was a crushing defeat for the French forces at the hands of the Habsburg forces (predominantly Spanish). An entire generation of French nobility was considerably dented, if not almost wiped out. Moreover, King Francis I endured the humiliation of being captured and sent to Madrid. In military terms, the scale of the defeat was crushing: French forces suffered in the range of 13,500 casualties (injured and killed) while the Habsburg forces only recorded 1,500.

So. what if the Habsburg forces had killed both Francis I and King Henry II of Navarre during the Battle of Pavia? The precedent exists for killing the enemy King should he be engaged in the battle at hand: one can look to Battle of Flodden and the death of King James IV of Scotland to the English forces as a case in point. The most obvious immediate outcome would be that the eldest son, 7 year old Francis, would succeed his late father as King Francis II of France, with his mother Louise of Savoy acting as regent (as she did IOTL after the capture of Francis I). As for Navarre, the sister of Henry II would likely become Queen Isabella I, which may present the Spanish with an opportunity to claim the Kingdom of Navarre through the maternal great grandfather of Charles V & I (King John II of Aragon and Navarre)

  1. Henry VIII of England shall become Henry II of France, bringing about a personal union between England and France. The Crown of France is to be inherited by his heirs in line with the rules of succession to the Crown of England.
  2. Certain lands that formed part of France as at February 1525 shall be separated from the Crown of France and instead form part of the Habsburg realm. This could include:
    • Duchy of Milan
    • South East and East France, specifically:
      • Provence
      • Montpellier
      • Narbonne
      • Forcalquier
      • Viviers
      • Lyonnais
      • Dauphiné
      • Charolais
      • Dijonnais
      • Auxerrois and
      • Barrois.
  3. The Duchy of Brittany would become a semi-autonomous duchy, though ultimately a vassal of Henry VIII & II. Since the Duchy of Brittany had become inherited by the Kings of France through personal union, a new duke/duchess would have to be found ITTL. Outside of the house of Dreux-Montfort or the house of Valois, I would suggest that the next best alternative is Renée de Rieux (La Belle Châteauneuf), daughter of the prominent Breton nobleman, martial and regent John (Jean) IV de Rieux.

Another factor weighing against France is that the majority of its standing army has just been destroyed and routed at the Pavia, plus a King and an entire generation of noblemen wiped out and hostile forces would be bearing down on France from all sides (English from Calais pushing south towards Paris, Spanish pushing west from Italy to Provence then up towards Burgundy, Bretons pushing east towards Le Mans and Tours and the Habsburg Netherlands pushing south towards Reims and Troyes). Logistically, the Anti-French Coalition will no-doubt find it difficult to coordinate their attacks, however, these would pale in comparison to the utter breakdown of the French state brought about for the aforementioned reasons. Assuming best case scenario for France ITTL, she would only find sympathy from the Papal States (IOTL), the Ottoman Empire (IOTL) and possibly Savoy since Duke Charles III is the brother of Louise.

If one were to take the above counterfactual as the most likely, the Ottomans IOTL took a full 6 months to initiate an offensive into Hungary, at the Battle of Mohács. I expect ITTL that France could be brought to its knees by the end of July 1525. The warming weather would facilitate the quick progress of the Anti-French coalition forces across France from all the different sides. Mean march speed for an army in 1500s as far as I know is

22 miles per day. French forces would likely be too disorganised to launch any counteroffensive of note until well into April. By this time, I expect Spanish forces to be near Lyon, English forces to have taken Amiens, Reims to have fallen to the Habsburg Netherlands and the Bretons to have captured Le Mans and Tours.

The interesting question is. what would happen to Francis, Henry and Charles (the three sons Francis I had with Louise)? For legitimacy reasons, would Henry VIII need to be rid of them? Perhaps a creative solution could be found? E.g. since Henry VIII and his wife Katherine had yet to have a surviving son, maybe they could adopt the sons and bind the two houses to create a Tudor-Valois dynasty by having Francis (then Henry, after the death of Francis in 1536 per IOTL) betrothed to Mary (daughter of Henry VIII)? Henry VIII could reign as King of France, with Francis (then Henry post the death of Francis) as heir. There was precedent for adoption in the Roman times, Byzantium and sporadically in other European countries.

As for the Papal States, I suspect the Pope could be bought out by gold and land (perhaps by returning Avignon and granting some Italian lands). IOTL, Pope Clement VII became an ally of Charles V & I. Savoy would hardly put up a whimper, let alone a fight.

  • For England --- reclaiming lost lands in France and establishing a secure position for the continental holdings and the British isles that is free from the threat of a powerful and hostile enemy on the continent
  • For the Habsburgs --- removing the meddling, rivalry and thorn in the side that was Valois France and gaining a powerful ally to assist with the upcoming wars against the Ottomans.
  • How likely do you think this scenario could have been, had Charles V & I more actively sought to coordinate with Henry VIII? IOTL England ended up switching sides in 1526 to support France in the Italian Wars, however, with the potential to rule all of France and recreate the Angevin Empire I suspect Henry VIII (English then British monarchs were crowned King/Queen of France up until 1800) would hardly have turned this down.
  • What would the potential consequential effects be? Would England have remained Catholic? Or would it still have undergone a Reformation and detached from the pope, but perhaps retained a Church of England that is more Catholic in its practices and substance?
  • Would Henry VIII still have sought to annul the marriage with Katherine?
  • Would the English have sought to expand into colonial empire, or simply have been satisfied with the newly acquired Kingdom of France?
  • Would the Ottomans be pushed back much earlier ITTL when facing the alliance between England (in personal union with France), the Habsburg domains and the Pope?
  • Would the dominance of the Habsburgs (both Austria and Spain) have greater longevity than IOTL?
  • Would the people of France accept this settlement? Would it depend on how the English ruled France and managed the nobility (e.g. in an inclusive and cooperative way vs. in an exclusionary and oppressive way)
  • Are there certain elements ITTL that are too far-fetched to be plausible?

Totally ASB with a lot of inexact things:

1) Louise of Savoy was Francis I’s mother not his wife. Francis’s first wife, already dead at that point, was Claude of France, Duchess of Brittany, the eldest daughter of Louis XII and Anne of Brittany.
2) In no way Henry II of Navarre would be followed on the throne by his youngest sister Isabelle. His heir now would be his younger brother Charles, captured by Austria at Naples
3) In no way Charles V and Henry VIII would be able to split France between them the Duke of Brittany right now is the new Francis II of France. in alternative can go to Francis’ maternal aunt Renee who claimed it.

Henry VIII need male heirs. If he can not have them by Catherine, he will divorce her under any scenario.


How Violent Were The Mongols, Really?

We remember the Mongols as a force of pure violence, but beneath their bloodthirsty exterior lay military genius. They knew how to terrorize a region enough to prevent rebellion but still have something worth ruling over. But how much terror was enough? Were the Mongols actually far more peaceful than we imagine them to be?

That’s it, right? The Mongols were every bit as violent as we think they were. You can’t conquer most of Asia without killing a lot of people.

Well, not quite. Although they were violent, they were controlled. Their greatest massacres always had a reason behind them, one which we see again and again.

The Mongols killed people who resisted. The greater the resistance, the greater the retribution. Cities that forced a long siege, or worse, killed a Mongol commander, would see their houses looted and citizens enslaved. Those who surrendered quickly would, for the most part, be spared.

This seems obvious, but it goes a long way towards understanding some of their most brutal campaigns. It is easy to assume that they were only out to kill, or that they did not care at all about the people they conquered. The latter is true to some degree, but even it fails to explain their actions.

The Mongols were pragmatic. Their objective was to conquer as fast as possible, and they didn’t care about human lives. For the most part, they didn’t set out with the intention of massacring a city. They wanted people to rule over, not ruins.

Frequently the desire for retribution, or for instilling terror, would become more important and lead to a slaughter. They understood exceptionally well the power of terror and took great pains to ensure that their reputation as merciless killers was known by everyone. They used the fear surrounding them to keep their vast empire in check and to make their expansion easier.

Ultimately their goal was conquest, and so they made sure that their massacres were controlled, to a degree. Artisans and craftsmen were often spared, as were towns that surrendered promptly. The vast killings they committed were as much a product of a high-level strategy as of a culture of violence within the armies.

It is easy to see their philosophy towards violence reflected in their campaigns. Their many, many conquests provide ample opportunities to see it play out, but the conquest of Khwarezm in 1219 provides a particularly clear example.

The invasion took place from 1219 to around 1221 under the direction of Genghis Khan and his sons. It was brutal even by Mongol standards, with the killings and mass exodus it sparked seeing some regions decline in population for generations. At the same time, there is a puzzling contrast between the cities that were chosen for destruction and those that were seemingly spared.

“… they do not seek territory or wealth, but only the destruction of the world that it may become a wasteland.” — Ibn al-Labbad

Some cities were looted and had their citizens enslaved and relocated, while others remained intact, and yet others were burned and rendered uninhabitable. Rather than simply being due to differences in command, the variations reveal how the Mongols responded differently to perceived acts of resistance.

The spark for the conflict was the execution of 500 Mongol merchant-ambassadors by the governor of Otrar, one of the largest trade cities in Khwarezm. The Shah of Khwarezm was justifiably worried that the merchants were also spies, and the nearness of several armies under Genghis’ sons exacerbated these fears. Whether the execution was on the Shah’s orders or not remains uncertain, but his actions afterward made it clear that he stood by it.

The deaths of the merchants provided Genghis with grounds for conquest, and so in 1219, he marched four armies into Khwarezm. The Shah had chosen to divide all his armies among the garrison, leaving none to fight the Mongols in the field. The Shah suspected the loyalty of many of his troops and feared they would desert or surrender in a battle.

This decision gave the Mongols a decisive advantage, but also lead to an increased number of massacres. Larger garrisons lead to longer sieges, which prompted retribution once the Mongols won.

The siege of Otrar illustrates the Mongol philosophy best: despite being the backdrop for the execution of the merchants, Genghis did not burn down the city and instead allowed the peasants and artisans to live. Though this seems like a small mercy, particularly since the peasants were relocated to distant parts of the empire, it makes it clear that the objective was conquest, not violence. Despite the city putting up five months of resistance, it was not enough to supersede the need for common laborers upon which the empire functioned.

On the other hand, the aftermath of the siege of Nishapur reveals what happens when they decided on retribution. During the siege, Togchar, one of Genghis’ son-in-laws, was killed and as vengeance, the city was exterminated. Toghcar’s widow leads the massacre, and when they concluded they heads were piled up in a grisly display. Nobody was spared, and reports claim that even the dogs and cats were killed.

The case of Nishapur makes it clear that the Mongols saw the death of a commander as a far greater insult than almost any other kind of resistance. When one of Genghis’ favorite grandsons was killed at the siege of Bamiyan the entire city was executed and it became forbidden to live there. It is a mercy for Khwarezm that there were only a few cases where commanders were killed, or else the already high death toll would have skyrocketed.

For the most part, the Mongols would spare artisans, even while the rest of the population was killed. At the siege of Gurganj, several hundred or thousand artisans were allowed to live, despite the city being destroyed so completely that it would be abandoned until a new one was built a decade later on Mongol orders.

The total extermination of a city was usually reserved for cases of rebellion, like at Balkh where the population was rounded up outside and executed. It was imperative to the Mongols that any rebellion be put down quickly lest it threatens to engulf their vast empire, and as a result cities which rebelled were utterly destroyed.

Although the “standard” procedure after a siege was to deport the artisans, loot the city, and then leave a governor ruling over those who remained, there are several cases in which a city surrendered early enough that the city was untouched. Herat was almost completely spared after it paid tribute and accepted a Mongol governor, while Balkh had suffered no pillaging up until it rebelled.

Whether or not a city would be spared largely depended on how important it was and whether or not it surrendered quickly. Major cities would invariably undergo looting even if they surrendered without a fight, simply because the Mongols wanted to make a point and extract resources.

Despite the existence of a rationale behind why some cities were decimated and others weren’t, there is no way to justify any part of what the Mongols carried out. They waged war without any regard for those they fought, and frequently without any regard for those they ruled over.

Even though their massacres were part of a larger strategy to terrify the enemy into surrendering without resistance, the reality remains that they killed hundreds of thousands across their Khwarezm campaign, and millions more over their century of terror. Genghis and his generals were mass-murderers, through and through. The world should be thankful that they only lasted as long as they did.


A Little History of Life and Death: Six Photographs of Nermin Divović in Sarajevo Under Siege

Joscelyn Jurich A Little History of Life and Death: Six Photographs of Nermin Divović in Sarajevo Under Siege. Afterimage 3 September 2019 46 (3): 25–30. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/aft.2019.463004

Of the many news and personal photographs, international and local newspaper front pages, posters, and makeshift stoves and heaters that Sarajevans fashioned during the siege of Sarajevo—now displayed in the Historical Museum of Bosnia-Herzegovina’s permanent exhibition, Sarajevo Under Siege—one object stands out. It is a small blue-and-white striped handknit sweater that belonged to Nermin Divović, a Sarajevan killed by a sniper on November 18, 1994, when he was seven years old. 1

Donated to the museum by Divović’s family, it lies stretched out under a glass case with a matter-of-fact caption printed on a rectangle of white paper resting atop. “Nermin Divović was a boy killed in 1994 by sniper.


Contents

Excavations of prehistoric sites by Louis Dupree and others at Darra-e Kur in 1966 where 800 stone implements were recovered along with a fragment of Neanderthal right temporal bone, suggest that early humans were living in what is now Afghanistan at least 52,000 years ago. A cave called Kara Kamar contained Upper Paleolithic blades Carbon-14 dated at 34,000 years old. [19] Farming communities in Afghanistan were among the earliest in the world. [4] Artifacts indicate that the indigenous people were small farmers and herdsmen, very probably grouped into tribes, with small local kingdoms rising and falling through the ages. Urbanization may have begun as early as 3000 BCE. [20] Zoroastrianism predominated as the religion in the area even the modern Afghan solar calendar shows the influence of Zoroastrianism in the names of the months. Other religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism flourished later, leaving a major mark in the region. Gandhara is the name of an ancient kingdom from the Vedic period and its capital city located between the Hindukush and Sulaiman Mountains (mountains of Solomon), [21] although Kandahar in modern times and the ancient Gandhara are not geographically identical. [22] [23]

Early inhabitants, around 3000 BCE were likely to have been connected through culture and trade to neighboring civilizations like Jiroft and Tappeh Sialk and the Indus Valley Civilization. Urban civilization may have begun as early as 3000 BCE and it is possible that the early city of Mundigak (near Kandahar) was a colony of the nearby Indus Valley Civilization. [3] The first known people were Indo-Iranians, [4] but their date of arrival has been estimated widely from as early as about 3000 BCE [24] to 1500 BCE. [25] (For further detail see Indo-Aryan migration.)

Indus Valley Civilization Edit

The Indus Valley Civilization (IVC) was a Bronze Age civilization (3300-1300 BCE mature period 2600–1900 BCE) extending from present-day northwest Pakistan to present-day northwest India and present-day northeast Afghanistan. [6] An Indus Valley site has been found on the Oxus River at Shortugai in northern Afghanistan. [26] Apart from Shortughai, Mundigak is another known site. [27] There are several other smaller IVC sites to be found in Afghanistan as well.

Bactria-Margiana Edit

The Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex became prominent between 2200 and 1700 BCE (approximately). The city of Balkh (Bactra) was founded about this time (c. 2000–1500 BCE). [24]

Medes Edit

There have been many different opinions about the extent of the Median kingdom. For instance, according to Ernst Herzfeld, it was a powerful empire, which stretched from central Anatolia to Bactria, to around the borders of nowadays India. On the other side, Heleen Sancisi-Weerdenburg insists that there is no real evidence about the very existence of the Median empire and that it was an unstable state formation. Nevertheless, the region of nowadays Afghanistan came under Median rule for a short time. [28]

Achaemenid Empire Edit

Afghanistan fell to the Achaemenid Empire after it was conquered by Darius I of Persia. The area was divided into several provinces called satrapies, which were each ruled by a governor, or satrap. These ancient satrapies included: Aria: The region of Aria was separated by mountain ranges from the Paropamisadae in the east, Parthia in the west and Margiana and Hyrcania in the north, while a desert separated it from Carmania and Drangiana in the south. It is described in a very detailed manner by Ptolemy and Strabo [29] and corresponds, according to that, almost to the Herat Province of today's Afghanistan Arachosia, corresponds to the modern-day Kandahar, Lashkar Gah, and Quetta. Arachosia bordered Drangiana to the west, Paropamisadae (i.e. Gandahara) to the north and to the east, and Gedrosia to the south. The inhabitants of Arachosia were Iranian peoples, referred to as Arachosians or Arachoti. [30] It is assumed that they were called Paktyans by ethnicity, and that name may have been in reference to the ethnic Paṣtun (Pashtun) tribes [31] Bactriana was the area north of the Hindu Kush, west of the Pamirs and south of the Tian Shan, with the Amu Darya flowing west through the center (Balkh) Sattagydia was the easternmost regions of the Achaemenid Empire, part of its Seventh tax district according to Herodotus, along with Gandārae, Dadicae and Aparytae. [32] It is believed to have been situated east of the Sulaiman Mountains up to the Indus River in the basin around Bannu.[ (Ghazni) and Gandhara which corresponds to modern day Kabul, Jalalabad, and Peshawar. [33]

Alexander and the Seleucids Edit

Alexander the Great arrived in the area of Afghanistan in 330 BCE after defeating Darius III of Persia a year earlier at the Battle of Gaugamela. [34] His army faced very strong resistance in the Afghan tribal areas where he is said to have commented that Afghanistan is "easy to march into, hard to march out of." [35] Although his expedition through Afghanistan was brief, Alexander left behind a Hellenic cultural influence that lasted several centuries. Several great cities were built in the region named "Alexandria," including: Alexandria-of-the-Arians (modern-day Herat) Alexandria-on-the-Tarnak (near Kandahar) Alexandria-ad-Caucasum (near Begram, at Bordj-i-Abdullah) and finally, Alexandria-Eschate (near Kojend), in the north. After Alexander's death, his loosely connected empire was divided. Seleucus, a Macedonian officer during Alexander's campaign, declared himself ruler of his own Seleucid Empire, which also included present-day Afghanistan. [36]

Mauryan Empire Edit

The territory fell to the Mauryan Empire, which was led by Chandragupta Maurya. The Mauryas introduced Hinduism and Buddhism to the region, and were planning to capture more territory of Central Asia until they faced local Greco-Bactrian forces. Seleucus is said to have reached a peace treaty with Chandragupta by giving control of the territory south of the Hindu Kush to the Mauryas upon intermarriage and 500 elephants.

Alexander took these away from the Indo-Aryans and established settlements of his own, but Seleucus Nicator gave them to Sandrocottus (Chandragupta), upon terms of intermarriage and of receiving in exchange 500 elephants. [37]

Some time after, as he was going to war with the generals of Alexander, a wild elephant of great bulk presented itself before him of its own accord, and, as if tamed down to gentleness, took him on its back, and became his guide in the war, and conspicuous in fields of battle. Sandrocottus, having thus acquired a throne, was in possession of India, when Seleucus was laying the foundations of his future greatness who, after making a league with him, and settling his affairs in the east, proceeded to join in the war against Antigonus. As soon as the forces, therefore, of all the confederates were united, a battle was fought, in which Antigonus was slain, and his son Demetrius put to flight. [38]

Having consolidated power in the northwest, Chandragupta pushed east towards the Nanda Empire. Afghanistan's significant ancient tangible and intangible Buddhist heritage is recorded through wide-ranging archeological finds, including religious and artistic remnants. Buddhist doctrines are reported to have reached as far as Balkh even during the life of the Buddha (563 BCE to 483 BCE), as recorded by Husang Tsang.

In this context a legend recorded by Husang Tsang refers to the first two lay disciples of Buddha, Trapusa and Bhallika responsible for introducing Buddhism in that country. Originally these two were merchants of the kingdom of Balhika, as the name Bhalluka or Bhallika probably suggests the association of one with that country. They had gone to India for trade and had happened to be at Bodhgaya when the Buddha had just attained enlightenment. [39]

Newly excavated Buddhist stupa at Mes Aynak in Logar Province of Afghanistan. Similar stupas have been discovered in neighboring Ghazni Province, including in the northern Samangan Province.

Aramaic Inscription of Laghman is an inscription on a slab of natural rock in the area of Laghmân, Afghanistan, written in Aramaic by the Indian emperor Ashoka about 260 BCE, and often categorized as one of Minor Rock Edicts of Ashoka. [40]

Kandahar Greek Edicts of Ashoka is among the Major Rock Edicts of the Indian Emperor Ashoka (reigned 269-233 BCE), which were written in the Greek language and Prakrit language.

Greco-Bactrian Kingdom Edit

The Greco-Bactrian Kingdom was a Hellenistic kingdom, [41] founded when Diodotus I, the satrap of Bactria (and probably the surrounding provinces) seceded from the Seleucid Empire around 250 BCE. [42]

The Greco-Bactria Kingdom continued until c. 130 BCE, when Eucratides I's son, King Heliocles I, was defeated and driven out of Bactria by the Yuezhi tribes from the east. The Yeuzhi now had complete occupation of Bactria. It is thought that Eucratides' dynasty continued to rule in Kabul and Alexandria of the Caucasus until 70 BCE when King Hermaeus was also defeated by the Yuezhi.

Indo-Greek Kingdom Edit

One of Demetrius I's successors, Menander I, brought the Indo-Greek Kingdom (now isolated from the rest of the Hellenistic world after the fall of Bactria [43] ) to its height between 165 and 130 BCE, expanding the kingdom in Afghanistan and Pakistan to even larger proportions than Demetrius. After Menander's death, the Indo-Greeks steadily declined and the last Indo-Greek kings (Strato II and Strato III) were defeated in c. 10 CE. [44] The Indo-Greek Kingdom was succeeded by the Indo-Scythians.

Indo-Scythians Edit

The Indo-Scythians were descended from the Sakas (Scythians) who migrated from southern Siberia to Pakistan and Arachosia from the middle of the 2nd century BCE to the 1st century BCE. They displaced the Indo-Greeks and ruled a kingdom that stretched from Gandhara to Mathura. The power of the Saka rulers started to decline in the 2nd century CE after the Scythians were defeated by the south Indian Emperor Gautamiputra Satakarni of the Satavahana dynasty. [45] [46] Later the Saka kingdom was completely destroyed by Chandragupta II of the Gupta Empire from eastern India in the 4th century. [47]

Indo-Parthians Edit

The Indo-Parthian Kingdom was ruled by the Gondopharid dynasty, named after its eponymous first ruler Gondophares. They ruled parts of present-day Afghanistan, Pakistan, [48] and northwestern India, during or slightly before the 1st century AD. For most of their history, the leading Gondopharid kings held Taxila (in the present Punjab province of Pakistan) as their residence, but during their last few years of existence the capital shifted between Kabul and Peshawar. These kings have traditionally been referred to as Indo-Parthians, as their coinage was often inspired by the Arsacid dynasty, but they probably belonged to a wider groups of Iranic tribes who lived east of Parthia proper, and there is no evidence that all the kings who assumed the title Gondophares, which means "Holder of Glory", were even related. Christian writings claim that the Apostle Saint Thomas – an architect and skilled carpenter – had a long sojourn in the court of king Gondophares, had built a palace for the king at Taxila and had also ordained leaders for the Church before leaving for the Indus Valley in a chariot, for sailing out to eventually reach Malabar Coast.

Kushans Edit

The Kushan Empire expanded out of Bactria (Central Asia) into the northwest of the subcontinent under the leadership of their first emperor, Kujula Kadphises, about the middle of the 1st century CE. They came from an Indo-European language speaking Central Asian tribe called the Yuezhi, [49] [50] a branch of which was known as the Kushans. By the time of his grandson, Kanishka the Great, the empire spread to encompass much of Afghanistan, [51] and then the northern parts of the Indian subcontinent at least as far as Saketa and Sarnath near Varanasi (Benares). [52]

Emperor Kanishka was a great patron of Buddhism however, as Kushans expanded southward, the deities [53] of their later coinage came to reflect its new Hindu majority. [54]

They played an important role in the establishment of Buddhism in the Indian subcontinent and its spread to Central Asia and China.

Historian Vincent Smith said about Kanishka:

He played the part of a second Ashoka in the history of Buddhism. [55]

The empire linked the Indian Ocean maritime trade with the commerce of the Silk Road through the Indus valley, encouraging long-distance trade, particularly between China and Rome. The Kushans brought new trends to the budding and blossoming Gandhara Art, which reached its peak during Kushan Rule.

The Kushan period is a fitting prelude to the Age of the Guptas. [56]

By the 3rd century, their empire in India was disintegrating and their last known great emperor was Vasudeva I. [57] [58]

Early Mahayana Buddhist triad. From left to right, a Kushan devotee, Maitreya, the Buddha, Avalokitesvara, and a Buddhist monk. 2nd–3rd century, Gandhara.

Kumara or Kartikeya with a Kushan devotee, 2nd century CE.

Kushan prince, said to be Huvishka, making a donation to a Boddhisattva. [59]

Shiva Linga worshipped by Kushan devotees, circa 2nd century CE.

Sassanian Empire Edit

After the Kushan Empire's rule was ended by Sassanids— officially known as the Empire of Iranians— was the last kingdom of the Persian Empire before the rise of Islam. Named after the House of Sasan, it ruled from 224 to 651 AD. In the east around 325, Shapur II regained the upper hand against the Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom and took control of large territories in areas now known as Afghanistan and Pakistan. Much of modern-day Afghanistan became part of the Sasanian Empire, since Shapur I extended his authority eastwards into Afghanistan and the previously autonomous Kushans were obliged to accept his suzerainty.

From around 370, however, towards the end of the reign of Shapur II, the Sassanids lost the control of Bactria to invaders from the north. These were the Kidarites, the Hephthalites, the Alchon Huns, and the Nezaks: The four Huna tribes to rule Afghanistan. [60] These invaders initially issued coins based on Sasanian designs. [61]

Huna Edit

The Hunas were peoples who were of a group of Central Asian tribes. Four of the Huna tribe conquered and ruled Afghanistan: the Kidarites, Hepthalites, Alchon Huns and the Nezaks.

Kidarites Edit

The Kidarites were a nomadic clan, the first of the four Huna people in Afghanistan. They are supposed to have originated in Western China and arrived in Bactria with the great migrations of the second half of the 4th century.

Alchon Huns Edit

The Alchons are one of the four Huna people that ruled in Afghanistan. A group of Central Asian tribes, Hunas or Huna, via the Khyber Pass, entered India at the end of the 5th or early 6th century and successfully occupied areas as far as Eran and Kausambi, greatly weakening the Gupta Empire. [62] The 6th-century Roman historian Procopius of Caesarea (Book I. ch. 3), related the Huns of Europe with the Hephthalites or "White Huns" who subjugated the Sassanids and invaded northwestern India, stating that they were of the same stock, "in fact as well as in name", although he contrasted the Huns with the Hephthalites, in that the Hephthalites were sedentary, white-skinned, and possessed "not ugly" features. [63] [64] Song Yun and Hui Zheng, who visited the chief of the Hephthalite nomads at his summer residence in Badakshan and later in Gandhara, observed that they had no belief in the Buddhist law and served a large number of divinities." [65]

The White Huns Edit

The Hephthalites (or Ephthalites), also known as the White Huns and one of the four Huna people in Afghanistan, were a nomadic confederation in Central Asia during the late antiquity period. The White Huns established themselves in modern-day Afghanistan by the first half of the 5th century. Led by the Hun military leader Toramana, they overran the northern region of Pakistan and North India. Toramana's son Mihirakula, a Saivite Hindu, moved up to near Pataliputra to the east and Gwalior to central India. Hiuen Tsiang narrates Mihirakula's merciless persecution of Buddhists and destruction of monasteries, though the description is disputed as far as the authenticity is concerned. [66] The Huns were defeated by the Indian kings Yasodharman of Malwa and Narasimhagupta in the 6th century. Some of them were driven out of India and others were assimilated in the Indian society. [67]

Nezak Huns Edit

The Nezaks are one of the four Huna people that ruled in Afghanistan.

From the Middle Ages to around 1750, Afghanistan was part of Iran. [68] [69] [70] [71] Two of the four main capitals of Khorasan (Balkh and Herat) are now located in Afghanistan. The countries of Kandahar, Ghazni and Kabul formed the frontier region between Khorasan and the Indus. [72] This land, inhabited by the Afghan tribes (i.e. ancestors of Pashtuns), was called Afghanistan, which loosely covered a wide area between the Hindu Kush and the Indus River, principally around the Sulaiman Mountains. [73] [74] The earliest record of the name "Afghan" ("Abgân") being mentioned is by Shapur I of the Sassanid Empire during the 3rd century CE [75] [76] [77] which is later recorded in the form of "Avagānā" by the Vedic astronomer Varāha Mihira in his 6th century CE Brihat-samhita. [78] It was used to refer to a common legendary ancestor known as "Afghana", grandson of King Saul of Israel. [79] Hiven Tsiang, a Chinese pilgrim, visiting the Afghanistan area several times between 630 and 644 CE also speaks about them. [75] Ancestors of many of today's Turkic-speaking Afghans settled in the Hindu Kush area and began to assimilate much of the culture and language of the Pashtun tribes already present there. [80] Among these were the Khalaj people which are known today as Ghilzai. [81]

Kabul Shahi Edit

The Kabul Shahi dynasties ruled the Kabul Valley and Gandhara from the decline of the Kushan Empire in the 3rd century to the early 9th century. [82] The Shahis are generally split up into two eras: the Buddhist Shahis and the Hindu Shahis, with the change-over thought to have occurred sometime around 870. The kingdom was known as the Kabul Shahan or Ratbelshahan from 565 to 670, when the capitals were located in Kapisa and Kabul, and later Udabhandapura, also known as Hund [83] for its new capital. [84] [85] [86]

The Hindu Shahis under Rajput ruler Jayapala, is known for his struggles in defending his kingdom against the Ghaznavids in the modern-day eastern Afghanistan region. Jayapala saw a danger in the consolidation of the Ghaznavids and invaded their capital city of Ghazni both in the reign of Sebuktigin and in that of his son Mahmud, which initiated the Muslim Ghaznavid and Hindu Shahi struggles. [87] Sebuktigin, however, defeated him, and he was forced to pay an indemnity. [87] Jayapala defaulted on the payment and took to the battlefield once more. [87] Jayapala however, lost control of the entire region between the Kabul Valley and Indus River. [88]

Before his struggle began Jaipal had raised a large army of Punjabi Hindus. When Jaipal went to the Punjab region, his army was raised to 100,000 horsemen and an innumerable host of foot soldiers. According to Ferishta:

"The two armies having met on the confines of Lumghan, Subooktugeen ascended a hill to view the forces of Jeipal, which appeared in extent like the boundless ocean, and in number like the ants or the locusts of the wilderness. But Subooktugeen considered himself as a wolf about to attack a flock of sheep: calling, therefore, his chiefs together, he encouraged them to glory, and issued to each his commands. His soldiers, though few in number, were divided into squadrons of five hundred men each, which were directed to attack successively, one particular point of the Hindoo line, so that it might continually have to encounter fresh troops." [88]

However, the army was hopeless in battle against the western forces, particularly against the young Mahmud of Ghazni. [88] In the year 1001, soon after Sultan Mahmud came to power and was occupied with the Qarakhanids north of the Hindu Kush, Jaipal attacked Ghazni once more and suffered yet another defeat by the powerful Ghaznavid forces, near present-day Peshawar. After the Battle of Peshawar, he committed suicide because his subjects thought he had brought disaster and disgrace to the Shahi dynasty. [87] [88]

Jayapala was succeeded by his son Anandapala, [87] who along with other succeeding generations of the Shahiya dynasty took part in various campaigns against the advancing Ghaznavids but were unsuccessful. The Hindu rulers eventually exiled themselves to the Kashmir Siwalik Hills. [88]

Image of Hindu deity, Ganesha, consecrated by the Shahis in Gardez, Afghanistan.

Coins of the Hindu Shahis, which later inspired Abbasid coins in the Middle East. [89]

Islamic conquest Edit

In 642 CE, Rashidun Arabs had conquered most of West Asia from the Sassanids and Byzantines, and from the western city of Herat they introduced the religion of Islam as they entered new cities. Afghanistan at that period had a number of different independent rulers, depending on the area. Ancestors of Abū Ḥanīfa, including his father, were from the Kabul region.

The early Arab forces did not fully explore Afghanistan due to attacks by the mountain tribes. Much of the eastern parts of the country remained independent, as part of the Hindu Shahi kingdoms of Kabul and Gandhara, which lasted that way until the forces of the Muslim Saffarid dynasty followed by the Ghaznavids conquered them.

Arab armies carrying the banner of Islam came out of the west to defeat the Sasanians in 642 CE and then they marched with confidence to the east. On the western periphery of the Afghan area the princes of Herat and Seistan gave way to rule by Arab governors but in the east, in the mountains, cities submitted only to rise in revolt and the hastily converted returned to their old beliefs once the armies passed. The harshness and avariciousness of Arab rule produced such unrest, however, that once the waning power of the Caliphate became apparent, native rulers once again established themselves independent. Among these the Saffarids of Seistan shone briefly in the Afghan area. The fanatic founder of this dynasty, the persian Yaqub ibn Layth Saffari, came forth from his capital at Zaranj in 870 CE and marched through Bost, Kandahar, Ghazni, Kabul, Bamyan, Balkh and Herat, conquering in the name of Islam. [90]

Ghaznavids Edit

The Ghaznavid dynasty ruled from the city of Ghazni in eastern Afghanistan. From 997 to his death in 1030, Mahmud of Ghazni turned the former provincial city of Ghazni into the wealthy capital of an extensive empire which covered most of today's Afghanistan, eastern Iran, and Pakistan. Mahmud consolidated the conquests of his predecessors and the city of Ghazni became a great cultural centre as well as a base for frequent forays into the Indian subcontinent. The Nasher Khans became princes of the Kharoti until the Soviet invasion. [91] [92] [93]

Ghorids Edit

The Ghaznavid dynasty was defeated in 1148 by the Ghurids from Ghor, but the Ghaznavid Sultans continued to live in Ghazni as the 'Nasher' until the early 20th century. [91] [92] [93] They did not regain their once vast power until about 500 years later when the Ghilzai Hotakis rose to power. Various princes and Seljuk rulers attempted to rule parts of the country until the Shah Muhammad II of the Khwarezmid Empire conquered all of Persia in 1205 CE. By 1219, the empire had fallen to the Mongols, led by Genghis Khan.

Mongol invasion Edit

The Mongol invasion resulted in massive destruction of several cities, including Bamiyan, Herat, and Balkh, and the despoliation of fertile agricultural areas. Large numbers of the inhabitants were also slaughtered. Most major cities north of the Hindu Kush became part of the Mongol Empire. The Afghan tribal areas south of the Hindu Kush were usually either allied with the Khalji dynasty of northern India or independent.

Timurids Edit

Timur (Tamerlane) incorporated much of the area into his own vast Timurid Empire. The city of Herat became one of the capitals of his empire, and his grandson Pir Muhammad held the seat of Kandahar. Timur rebuilt most of Afghanistan's infrastructure which was destroyed by his early ancestor. The area was progressing under his rule. Timurid rule began declining in the early 16th century with the rise of a new ruler in Kabul, Babur. Timur, a descendant of Genghis Khan, created a vast new empire across Russia and Persia which he ruled from his capital in Samarkand in present-day Uzbekistan. Timur captured Herat in 1381 and his son, Shah Rukh moved the capital of the Timurid empire to Herat in 1405. The Timurids, a Turkic people, brought the Turkic nomadic culture of Central Asia within the orbit of Persian civilisation, establishing Herat as one of the most cultured and refined cities in the world. This fusion of Central Asian and Persian culture was a major legacy for the future Afghanistan. Under the rule of Shah Rukh the city served as the focal point of the Timurid Renaissance, whose glory matched Florence of the Italian Renaissance as the center of a cultural rebirth. [94] [95] A century later, the emperor Babur, a descendant of Timur, visited Herat and wrote, "the whole habitable world had not such a town as Herat." For the next 300 years the eastern Afghan tribes periodically invaded India creating vast Indo-Afghan empires. In 1500 CE, Babur was driven out of his home in the Ferghana valley. By the 16th century western Afghanistan again reverted to Persian rule under the Safavid dynasty. [96] [97]

Mughals, Uzbeks and Safavids Edit

In 1504, Babur, a descendant of Timur, arrived from present-day Uzbekistan and moved to the city of Kabul. He began exploring new territories in the region, with Kabul serving as his military headquarters. Instead of looking towards the powerful Safavids towards the Persian west, Babur was more focused on the Indian subcontinent. In 1526, he left with his army to capture the seat of the Delhi Sultanate, which at that point was possessed by the Afghan Lodi dynasty of India. After defeating Ibrahim Lodi and his army, Babur turned (Old) Delhi into the capital of his newly established Mughal Empire.

From the 16th century to the 17th century CE, Afghanistan was divided into three major areas. The north was ruled by the Khanate of Bukhara, the west was under the rule of the Iranian Shia Safavids, and the eastern section was under the Sunni Mughals of northern India, who under Akbar established in Kabul one of the original twelve subahs (imperial top-level provinces), bordering Lahore, Multan and Kashmir (added to Kabul in 1596, later split-off) and short-lived Balkh Subah and Badakhshan Subah (only 1646–47). The Kandahar region in the south served as a buffer zone between the Mughals (who shortly established a Qandahar subah 1638–1648) and Persia's Safavids, with the native Afghans often switching support from one side to the other. Babur explored a number of cities in the region before his campaign into India. In the city of Kandahar, his personal epigraphy can be found in the Chilzina rock mountain. Like in the rest of the territories that used to make part of the Indian Mughal Empire, Afghanistan holds tombs, palaces, and forts built by the Mughals. [98]

Hotaki dynasty Edit

In 1704, the Safavid Shah Husayn appointed George XI (Gurgīn Khān), a ruthless Georgian subject, to govern their easternmost territories in the Greater Kandahar region. One of Gurgīn's main objectives was to crush the rebellions started by native Afghans. Under his rule the revolts were successfully suppressed and he ruled Kandahar with uncompromising severity. He began imprisoning and executing the native Afghans, especially those suspected in having taken part in the rebellions. One of those arrested and imprisoned was Mirwais Hotak who belonged to an influential family in Kandahar. Mirwais was sent as a prisoner to the Persian court in Isfahan, but the charges against him were dismissed by the king, so he was sent back to his native land as a free man. [99]

In April 1709, Mirwais along with his militia under Saydal Khan Naseri revolted. [100] [101] The uprising began when George XI and his escort were killed after a banquet that had been prepared by Mirwais at his house outside the city. [102] Around four days later, an army of well-trained Georgian troops arrived in the city after hearing of Gurgīn's death, but Mirwais and his Afghan forces successfully held the city against the troops. Between 1710 and 1713, the Afghan forces defeated several large Persian armies that were dispatched from Isfahan by the Safavids, which included Qizilbash and Georgian/Circassian troops. [103]

Several half-hearted attempts to subdue the rebellious city having failed, the Persian Government despatched Khusraw Khán, nephew of the late Gurgín Khán, with an army of 30,000 men to effect its subjugation, but in spite of an initial success, which led the Afghans to offer to surrender on terms, his uncompromising attitude impelled them to make a fresh desperate effort, resulting in the complete defeat of the Persian army (of whom only some 700 escaped) and the death of their general. Two years later, in 1713, another Persian army commanded by Rustam Khán was also defeated by the rebels, who thus secured possession of the whole province of Qandahár. [104]

Southern Afghanistan was made into an independent local Pashtun kingdom. [18] Refusing the title of king, Mirwais was called "Prince of Qandahár and general of the national troops" by his Afghan countrymen. He died of natural causes in November 1715 and was succeeded by his brother Abdul Aziz Hotak. Aziz was killed about two years later by Mirwais' son Mahmud Hotaki, allegedly for planning to give Kandahar's sovereignty back to Persia. [105] Mahmud led an Afghan army into Persia in 1722 and defeated the Safavids at the Battle of Gulnabad. The Afghans captured Isfahan (Safavid capital) and Mahmud briefly became the new Persian Shah. He was known after that as Shah Mahmud.

Mahmud began a short-lived reign of terror against his Persian subjects who defied his rule from the very start, and he was eventually murdered in 1725 by his own cousin, Shah Ashraf Hotaki. Some sources say he died of madness . Ashraf became the new Afghan Shah of Persia soon after Mahmud's death, while the home region of Afghanistan was ruled by Mahmud's younger brother Shah Hussain Hotaki. Ashraf was able to secure peace with the Ottoman Empire in 1727 (See Treaty of Hamedan), winning against a superior Ottoman army during the Ottoman-Hotaki War, but the Russian Empire took advantage of the continuing political unrest and civil strife to seize former Persian territories for themselves, limiting the amount of territory under Shah Mahmud's control.

The short lived Hotaki dynasty was a troubled and violent one from the very start as internecine conflict made it difficult for them to establish permanent control. The dynasty lived under great turmoil due to bloody succession feuds that made their hold on power tenuous. There was a massacre of thousands of civilians in Isfahan including more than three thousand religious scholars, nobles, and members of the Safavid family. [106] The vast majority of the Persians rejected the Afghan regime which they considered to have been usurping power from the very start. Hotaki's rule continued in Afghanistan until 1738 when Shah Hussain was defeated and banished by Nader Shah of Persia. [107]

The Hotakis were eventually removed from power in 1729, after a very short lived reign. They were defeated in the October 1729 by the Iranian military commander Nader Shah, head of the Afsharids, at the Battle of Damghan. After several military campaigns against the Afghans, he effectively reduced the Hotaki's power to only southern Afghanistan. The last ruler of the Hotaki dynasty, Shah Hussain, ruled southern Afghanistan until 1738 when the Afsharids and the Abdali Pashtuns defeated him at the long Siege of Kandahar. [107]

Afsharid Invasion and Durrani Empire Edit

Nader Shah and his Afsharid Persian army arrived in the town of Kandahar in 1738 and defeated Hussain Hotaki subsequently absorbing all of Afghanistan in his empire and renaming Kandahar as Naderabad. Around this time, a young teenager Ahmad Khan joined Nader Shah's army for his invasion of India.

Nadir Shah was assassinated on 19 June 1747 by several of his Persian officers, and the Afsharid Persian empire fell to pieces. At the same time the 25-year-old Ahmad Khan was busy in Afghanistan calling for a loya jirga ("grand assembly") to select a leader among his people. The Afghans gathered near Kandahar in October 1747 and chose Ahmad Shah from among the challengers, making him their new head of state. After the inauguration or coronation, he became known as Ahmad Shah Durrani. He adopted the title padshah durr-i dawran ('King, "pearl of the age") and the Abdali tribe became known as the Durrani tribe after this. [109] Ahmad Shah not only represented the Durranis but he also united all the Pashtun tribes. By 1751, Ahmad Shah Durrani and his Afghan army conquered the entire present-day Afghanistan, Pakistan, and for a short time, the Khorasan and Kohistan provinces of Iran, along with Delhi in India. [110] He defeated the Maratha Empire in 1761 at the Battle of Panipat.

In October 1772, Ahmad Shah retired to his home in Kandahar where he died peacefully and was buried at a site that is now adjacent to the Shrine of the Cloak. He was succeeded by his son, Timur Shah Durrani, who transferred the capital of their Afghan Empire from Kandahar to Kabul. Timur died in 1793 and his son Zaman Shah Durrani took over the reign.

Zaman Shah and his brothers had a weak hold on the legacy left to them by their famous ancestor. They sorted out their differences through a "round robin of expulsions, blindings and executions," which resulted in the deterioration of the Afghan hold over far-flung territories, such as Attock and Kashmir. Durrani's other grandson, Shuja Shah Durrani, fled the wrath of his brother and sought refuge with the Sikhs. Not only had Durrani invaded the Punjab region many times, but had destroyed the holiest shrine of the Sikhs – the Harmandir Sahib in Amritsar, defiling its sarowar with the blood of cows and decapitating Baba Deep Singh in 1757. The Sikhs, under Ranjit Singh, eventually wrested a large part of the Kingdom of Kabul (present day Pakistan, but not including Sindh) from the Afghans. [111] In 1837, the Afghan army descended through the Khyber Pass on Sikh forces at Jamrud killed the Sikh general Hari Singh Nalwa but could not capture the fort. [112]

Barakzai dynasty and British influence Edit

The Emir Dost Mohammed Khan (1793-1863) gained control in Kabul in 1826 and founded (c. 1837 ) the Barakzai dynasty. Rivalry between the expanding British and Russian Empires in what became known as "The Great Game" significantly influenced Afghanistan during the 19th century. British concern over Russian advances in Central Asia and over Russia's growing influence in West Asia and in Persia in particular culminated in two Anglo-Afghan wars and in the Siege of Herat (1837–1838), in which the Persians, trying to retake Afghanistan and throw out the British, sent armies into the country and fought the British mostly around and in the city of Herat. The first Anglo-Afghan War (1839–1842) resulted in the destruction of a British army causing great panic throughout British India and the dispatch of a second British invasion army. [113] The Second Anglo-Afghan War (1878–1880) resulted from the refusal by Emir Shir Ali (reigned 1863 to 1866 and from 1868 to 1879) to accept a British mission in Kabul. In the wake of this conflict Shir Ali's nephew, Emir Abdur Rahman, known by some [ who? ] as the "Iron Emir", [114] came to the Afghan throne. During his reign (1880–1901), the British and Russians officially established the boundaries of what would become modern Afghanistan. The British retained effective control over Kabul's foreign affairs. Abdur Rahman's reforms of the army, legal system and structure of government gave Afghanistan a degree of unity and stability which it had not before known. This, however, came at the cost of strong centralisation, of harsh punishments for crime and corruption, and of a certain degree of international isolation. [14]

Habibullah Khan, Abdur Rahman's son, came to the throne in 1901 and kept Afghanistan neutral during World War I, despite German encouragement of anti-British feelings and of Afghan rebellion along the borders of British India. His policy of neutrality was not universally popular within the country however, and Habibullah was assassinated in 1919, possibly by family members opposed to British influence. His third son, Amanullah ( r . 1919–1929 ), regained control of Afghanistan's foreign policy after launching the Third Anglo-Afghan War (May to August 1919) with an attack on India. During the ensuing conflict the war-weary British relinquished their control over Afghan foreign affairs by signing the Treaty of Rawalpindi in August 1919. In commemoration of this event Afghans celebrate 19 August as their Independence Day.

Reforms of Amanullah Khan and civil war Edit

King Amanullah Khan moved to end his country's traditional isolation in the years following the Third Anglo-Afghan war. After quelling the Khost rebellion in 1925, he established diplomatic relations with most major countries and, following a 1927 tour of Europe and Turkey (during which he noted the modernization and secularization advanced by Atatürk), introduced several reforms intended to modernize Afghanistan. A key force behind these reforms was Mahmud Tarzi, Amanullah Khan's Foreign Minister and father-in-law — and an ardent supporter of the education of women. He fought for Article 68 of Afghanistan's first constitution (declared through a Loya Jirga), which made elementary education compulsory. [115] Some of the reforms that were actually put in place, such as the abolition of the traditional Muslim veil for women and the opening of a number of co-educational schools, quickly alienated many tribal and religious leaders, which led to the revolt of the Shinwari in November 1928, marking the beginning of the Afghan Civil War (1928–1929). Although the Shinwari revolt was quelled, a concurrent Saqqawist uprising in the north eventually managed to depose Amanullah, leading to Habibullāh Kalakāni taking control of Kabul. [116]

Reigns of Nadir Khan and Zahir Khan Edit

Prince Mohammed Nadir Khan, cousin of Amanullah Khan, in turn defeated, and executed Habibullah Kalakani in October and November 1929 respectively. He was soon declared King Nadir Khan. He began consolidating power and regenerating the country. He abandoned the reforms of Amanullah Khan in favour of a more gradual approach to modernisation. In 1933, however, he was assassinated in a revenge killing by a student from Kabul.

Mohammad Zahir Shah, Nadir Khan's 19-year-old son, succeeded to the throne and reigned from 1933 to 1973. The Afghan tribal revolts of 1944–1947 saw Zahir Shah's reign being challenged by Zadran, Safi and Mangal tribesmen led by Mazrak Zadran and Salemai among others. Until 1946 Zahir Shah ruled with the assistance of his uncle Sardar Mohammad Hashim Khan, who held the post of Prime Minister and continued the policies of Nadir Khan. In 1946, another of Zahir Shah's uncles, Sardar Shah Mahmud Khan, became Prime Minister and began an experiment allowing greater political freedom, but reversed the policy when it went further than he expected. In 1953, he was replaced as Prime Minister by Mohammed Daoud Khan, the king's cousin and brother-in-law. Daoud looked for a closer relationship with the Soviet Union and a more distant one towards Pakistan. However, disputes with Pakistan led to an economic crisis and he was asked to resign in 1963. From 1963 until 1973, Zahir Shah took a more active role.

In 1964, King Zahir Shah promulgated a liberal constitution providing for a bicameral legislature to which the king appointed one-third of the deputies. The people elected another third, and the remainder were selected indirectly by provincial assemblies. Although Zahir's "experiment in democracy" produced few lasting reforms, it permitted the growth of unofficial extremist parties on both the left and the right. This included the communist People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), which had close ideological ties to the Soviet Union. In 1967, the PDPA split into two major rival factions: the Khalq (Masses) was headed by Nur Muhammad Taraki and Hafizullah Amin who were supported by elements within the military, and the Parcham (Banner) led by Babrak Karmal.

Republic of Afghanistan and the end of the monarchy Edit

Amid charges of corruption and malfeasance against the royal family and poor economic conditions created by the severe 1971–72 drought, former Prime Minister Mohammad Sardar Daoud Khan seized power in a non-violent coup on July 17, 1973, while Zahir Shah was receiving treatment for eye problems and therapy for lumbago in Italy. [117] Daoud abolished the monarchy, abrogated the 1964 constitution, and declared Afghanistan a republic with himself as its first President and Prime Minister. His attempts to carry out badly needed economic and social reforms met with little success, and the new constitution promulgated in February 1977 failed to quell chronic political instability.

As disillusionment set in, in 1978 a prominent member of the People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), Mir Akbar Khyber (or "Kaibar"), was killed by the government. The leaders of PDPA apparently feared that Daoud was planning to exterminate them all, especially since most of them were arrested by the government shortly after. Nonetheless, Hafizullah Amin and a number of military wing officers of the PDPA's Khalq faction managed to remain at large and organize a military coup.

Democratic Republic and Soviet war (1978–1989) Edit

On 28 April 1978, the PDPA, led by Nur Mohammad Taraki, Babrak Karmal and Amin Taha overthrew the government of Mohammad Daoud, who was assassinated along with all his family members in a bloody military coup. The coup became known as the Saur Revolution. On 1 May, Taraki became President, Prime Minister and General Secretary of the PDPA. The country was then renamed the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan (DRA), and the PDPA regime lasted, in some form or another, until April 1992.

In March 1979, Hafizullah Amin took over as prime minister, retaining the position of field marshal and becoming vice-president of the Supreme Defence Council. Taraki remained President and in control of the Army. On 14 September, Amin overthrew Taraki, who was killed. Amin stated that "the Afghans recognize only crude force." [118] Afghanistan expert Amin Saikal writes: "As his powers grew, so apparently did his craving for personal dictatorship . and his vision of the revolutionary process based on terror." [118]

Once in power, the PDPA implemented a liberal and Marxist–Leninist agenda. It moved to replace religious and traditional laws with secular and Marxist–Leninist ones. Men were obliged to cut their beards, women could not wear a chador, and mosques were placed off limits. The PDPA made a number of reforms on women's rights, banning forced marriages and giving state recognition of women's right to vote. A prominent example was Anahita Ratebzad, who was a major Marxist leader and a member of the Revolutionary Council. Ratebzad wrote the famous New Kabul Times editorial (May 28, 1978) which declared: "Privileges which women, by right, must have are equal education, job security, health services, and free time to rear a healthy generation for building the future of the country . Educating and enlightening women is now the subject of close government attention." The PDPA also carried out socialist land reforms and moved to promote state atheism. [119] They also prohibited usury. [120] The PDPA invited the Soviet Union to assist in modernizing its economic infrastructure (predominantly its exploration and mining of rare minerals and natural gas). The USSR also sent contractors to build roads, hospitals and schools and to drill water wells they also trained and equipped the Afghan army. Upon the PDPA's ascension to power, and the establishment of the DRA, the Soviet Union promised monetary aid amounting to at least $1.262 billion.

At the same time, the PDPA imprisoned, tortured or murdered thousands of members of the traditional elite, the religious establishment, and the intelligentsia. [ citation needed ] The government launched a campaign of violent repression, killing some 10,000 to 27,000 people and imprisoning 14,000 to 20,000 more, mostly at Pul-e-Charkhi prison. [121] [122] [123] In December 1978 the PDPA leadership signed an agreement with the Soviet Union which would allow military support for the PDPA in Afghanistan if needed. The majority of people in the cities including Kabul either welcomed or were ambivalent to these policies. However, the Marxist–Leninist and secular nature of the government as well as its heavy dependence on the Soviet Union made it unpopular with a majority of the Afghan population. Repressions plunged large parts of the country, especially the rural areas, into open revolt against the new Marxist–Leninist government. By spring 1979 unrests had reached 24 out of 28 Afghan provinces including major urban areas. Over half of the Afghan army would either desert or join the insurrection. Most of the government's new policies clashed directly with the traditional Afghan understanding of Islam, making religion one of the only forces capable of unifying the tribally and ethnically divided population against the unpopular new government, and ushering in the advent of Islamist participation in Afghan politics. [124]

To bolster the Parcham faction, the Soviet Union decided to intervene on December 27, 1979, when the Red Army invaded its southern neighbor. Over 100,000 Soviet troops took part in the invasion, which was backed by another 100,000 Afghan military men and supporters of the Parcham faction. In the meantime, Hafizullah Amin was killed and replaced by Babrak Karmal.

In response to the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, the Carter administration and Reagan administration in the U.S. began arming the Mujahideen, thanks in large part to the efforts of Charlie Wilson and CIA officer Gust Avrakotos. Early reports estimated that $6–20 billion had been spent by the U.S. and Saudi Arabia [125] but more recent reports state that the U.S. and Saudi Arabia provided as much as up to $40 billion [126] [127] [128] in cash and weapons, which included over two thousand FIM-92 Stinger surface-to-air missiles, for building up Islamic groups against the Soviet Union. The U.S. handled most of its support through Pakistan's ISI.

Scholars such as W. Michael Reisman, [129] Charles Norchi [130] and Mohammed Kakar, believe that the Afghans were victims of genocide by the Soviet Union. [131] [132] Soviet forces and their proxies killed between 562,000 [133] and 2 million Afghans [134] [135] and Russian soldiers also engaged in abductions and rapes of Afghan women. [136] [137] About 6 million fled as Afghan refugees to Pakistan and Iran, and from there over 38,000 made it to the United States [138] and many more to the European Union. The Afghan refugees in Iran and Pakistan brought with them verifiable stories of murder, collective rape, torture and depopulation of civilians by the Soviet forces. [139] Faced with mounting international pressure and great number of casualties on both sides, the Soviets withdrew in 1989. Their withdrawal from Afghanistan was seen as an ideological victory in the United States, which had backed some Mujahideen factions through three U.S. presidential administrations to counter Soviet influence in the vicinity of the oil-rich Persian Gulf. The USSR continued to support President Mohammad Najibullah (former head of the Afghan secret service, KHAD) until 1992. [140]

Foreign interference and civil war (1989–1996) Edit

Pakistan's spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), headed by Hamid Gul at the time, was interested in a trans-national Islamic revolution which would cover Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia. For this purpose the ISI masterminded an attack on Jalalabad in March 1989, for the Mujahideen to establish their own government in Afghanistan, but this failed in three months. [141]

With the crumbling of the Najibullah-regime early in 1992, Afghanistan fell into further disarray and civil war. A U.N.-supported attempt to have the mujahideen parties and armies form a coalition government shattered. Mujahideen did not abide by the mutual pledges and Ahmad Shah Masood forces because of his proximity to Kabul captured the capital before Mujahideen Govt was established. So the elected prime minister and warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, started war on his president and Massod force entrenched in Kabul. This ignited civil war, because the other mujahideen parties wouldn't settle for Hekmatyar ruling alone or sharing actual power with him. Within weeks, the still frail unity of the other mujahideen forces also evaporated, and six militias were fighting each other in and around Kabul.

Subghatullah Mujadady was elected as Afghanistan's elected interim president for two months and then professor Burhanuddin Rabani a well known Kabul university professor and the leader of Jamiat-e-Islami party of Mujahiddin who fought against Russians during the occupation was chosen by all of the Jahadi leaders except Golbuddin Hikmat Yar. Professor Rabani reigned as the official and elected president of Afghanistan by Shurai Mujahiddin Peshawer (Peshawer Mujahiddin Council) from 1992 until 2001 when he officially handed over the presidency post to Hamid Karzai the next US appointed interim president. During Rabbani's presidency some parts of the country including a few provinces in the north such as Mazar e-Sharif, Jawzjan, Faryab, Shuburghan and some parts of Baghlan provinces were ruled by general Abdul Rashid Dostom. During Rabbani's first five years illegal term before the emergence of the Taliban, the eastern and western provinces and some of the northern provinces such as Badakhshan, Takhar, Kunduz, the main parts of Baghlan Province, and some parts of Kandahar and other southern provinces were under the control of the central government while the other parts of southern provinces did not obey him because of his Tajik ethnicity. During the 9 year presidency of Burhanuddin Rabani, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar was directed, funded and supplied by the Pakistani army. [142] Afghanistan analyst Amin Saikal concludes in his book Modern Afghanistan: A History of Struggle and Survival:

Pakistan was keen to gear up for a breakthrough in Central Asia. [. ] Islamabad could not possibly expect the new Islamic government leaders [. ] to subordinate their own nationalist objectives in order to help Pakistan realize its regional ambitions. [. ] Had it not been for the ISI's logistic support and supply of a large number of rockets, Hekmatyar's forces would not have been able to target and destroy half of Kabul. [143]

There was no time for the interim government to create working government departments, police units or a system of justice and accountability. Saudi Arabia and Iran also armed and directed Afghan militias. [118] A publication by the George Washington University describes:

[O]utside forces saw instability in Afghanistan as an opportunity to press their own security and political agendas. [144]

According to Human Rights Watch, numerous Iranian agents were assisting the Shia Hezb-i Wahdat forces of Abdul Ali Mazari, as Iran was attempting to maximize Wahdat's military power and influence. [118] [145] [146] Saudi Arabia was trying to strengthen the Wahhabite Abdul Rasul Sayyaf and his Ittihad-i Islami faction. [118] [145] Atrocities were committed by individuals of the different factions while Kabul descended into lawlessness and chaos as described in reports by Human Rights Watch and the Afghanistan Justice Project. [145] [147] Again, Human Rights Watch writes:

Rare ceasefires, usually negotiated by representatives of Ahmad Shah Massoud, Sibghatullah Mojaddedi or Burhanuddin Rabbani (the interim government), or officials from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), commonly collapsed within days. [145]

The main forces involved during that period in Kabul, northern, central and eastern Afghanistan were the Hezb-i Islami of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar directed by Pakistan, the Hezb-i Wahdat of Abdul Ali Mazari directed by Iran, the Ittehad-i Islami of Abdul Rasul Sayyaf supported by Saudi Arabia, the Junbish-i Milli of Abdul Rashid Dostum backed by Uzbekisten, the Harakat-i Islami of Hussain Anwari and the Shura-i Nazar operating as the regular Islamic State forces (as agreed upon in the Peshawar Accords) under the Defence Ministry of Ahmad Shah Massoud.

Meanwhile, the southern city of Kandahar was a centre of lawlessness, crime and atrocities fuelled by complex Pashtun tribal rivalries. [148] In 1994, the Taliban (a movement originating from Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-run religious schools for Afghan refugees in Pakistan) also developed in Afghanistan as a politico-religious force, reportedly in opposition to the tyranny of the local governor. [148] Mullah Omar started his movement with fewer than 50 armed madrassah students in his hometown of Kandahar. [148] As Gulbuddin Hekmatyar remained unsuccessful in conquering Kabul, Pakistan started supporting the Taliban. [118] [149] Many analysts like Amin Saikal describe the Taliban as developing into a proxy force for Pakistan's regional interests. [118] In 1994 the Taliban took power in several provinces in southern and central Afghanistan.

In 1995 the Hezb-i Islami of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the Iranian-backed Hezb-i Wahdat as well as Rashid Dostum's Junbish forces were defeated militarily in the capital Kabul by forces of the interim government under Massoud who subsequently tried to initiate a nationwide political process with the goal of national consolidation and democratic elections, also inviting the Taliban to join the process. [150] The Taliban declined. [150]

Taliban and the United Front (1996–2001) Edit

The Taliban started shelling Kabul in early 1995 but were defeated by forces of the Islamic State government under Ahmad Shah Massoud. [151] Amnesty International, referring to the Taliban offensive, wrote in a 1995 report:

This is the first time in several months that Kabul civilians have become the targets of rocket attacks and shelling aimed at residential areas in the city. [151]

On September 26, 1996, as the Taliban, with military support by Pakistan and financial support by Saudi Arabia, prepared for another major offensive, Massoud ordered a full retreat from Kabul. [152] The Taliban seized Kabul on September 27, 1996, and established the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. They imposed on the parts of Afghanistan under their control their political and judicial interpretation of Islam, issuing edicts forbidding women from working outside the home, attending school or leaving their homes unless accompanied by a male relative. [153] Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) said:

To PHR's knowledge, no other regime in the world has methodically and violently forced half of its population into virtual house arrest, prohibiting them on pain of physical punishment. [153]

After the fall of Kabul to the Taliban on September 27, 1996, [154] Ahmad Shah Massoud and Abdul Rashid Dostum, two former enemies, created the United Front (Northern Alliance) against the Taliban, who were preparing offensives against the remaining areas under the control of Massoud and Dostum. [155] The United Front included beside the dominantly Tajik forces of Massoud and the Uzbek forces of Dostum, Hazara factions and Pashtun forces under the leadership of commanders such as Abdul Haq, Haji Abdul Qadir, Qari Baba or diplomat Abdul Rahim Ghafoorzai. From the Taliban conquest in 1996 until November 2001 the United Front controlled roughly 30% of Afghanistan's population in provinces such as Badakhshan, Kapisa, Takhar and parts of Parwan, Kunar, Nuristan, Laghman, Samangan, Kunduz, Ghōr and Bamyan.

According to a 55-page report by the United Nations, the Taliban, while trying to consolidate control over northern and western Afghanistan, committed systematic massacres against civilians. [156] [157] UN officials stated that there had been "15 massacres" between 1996 and 2001. [156] [157] They also said, that "[t]hese have been highly systematic and they all lead back to the [Taliban] Ministry of Defense or to Mullah Omar himself." [156] [157] The Taliban especially targeted people of Shia religious or Hazara ethnic background. [156] [157] Upon taking Mazar-i-Sharif in 1998, about 4,000 civilians were executed by the Taliban and many more reported tortured. [158] [159] Among those killed in Mazari Sharif were several Iranian diplomats. Others were kidnapped by the Taliban, touching off a hostage crisis that nearly escalated to a full-scale war, with 150,000 Iranian soldiers massed on the Afghan border at one time. [160] It was later admitted that the diplomats were killed by the Taliban, and their bodies were returned to Iran. [161]

The documents also reveal the role of Arab and Pakistani support troops in these killings. [156] [157] Osama Bin Laden's so-called 055 Brigade was responsible for mass-killings of Afghan civilians. [162] The report by the United Nations quotes eyewitnesses in many villages describing Arab fighters carrying long knives used for slitting throats and skinning people. [156] [157]

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf – then as Chief of Army Staff – was responsible for sending thousands of Pakistanis to fight alongside the Taliban and Bin Laden against the forces of Massoud. [149] [150] [163] [164] [ unreliable source? ] In total there were believed to be 28,000 Pakistani nationals fighting inside Afghanistan. [150] 20,000 were regular Pakistani soldiers either from the Frontier Corps or army and an estimated 8,000 were militants recruited in madrassas filling regular Taliban ranks. [162] The estimated 25,000 Taliban regular force thus comprised more than 8,000 Pakistani nationals. [162] A 1998 document by the U.S. State Department confirms that "20–40 percent of [regular] Taliban soldiers are Pakistani." [149] The document further states that the parents of those Pakistani nationals "know nothing regarding their child's military involvement with the Taliban until their bodies are brought back to Pakistan." [149] A further 3,000 fighter of the regular Taliban army were Arab and Central Asian militants. [162] From 1996 to 2001 the Al Qaeda of Osama Bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri became a state within the Taliban state. [165] Bin Laden sent Arab recruits to join the fight against the United Front. [165] [166] Of roughly 45,000 Pakistani, Taliban and Al Qaeda soldiers fighting against the forces of Massoud only 14,000 were Afghan. [150] [162]

According to Human Rights Watch in 1997 Taliban soldiers were summarily executed in and around Mazar-i Sharif by Dostum's Junbish forces. [167] Dostum was defeated by the Taliban in 1998 with the fall of Mazar-i-Sharif. Massoud remained the only leader of the United Front in Afghanistan.

In the areas under his control Ahmad Shah Massoud set up democratic institutions and signed the Women's Rights Charter. [168] Human Rights Watch cites no human rights crimes for the forces under direct control of Massoud for the period from October 1996 until the assassination of Massoud in September 2001. [167] As a consequence many civilians fled to the area of Ahmad Shah Massoud. [163] [169] National Geographic concluded in its documentary Inside the Taliban:

The only thing standing in the way of future Taliban massacres is Ahmad Shah Massoud. [163]

The Taliban repeatedly offered Massoud a position of power to make him stop his resistance. Massoud declined for he did not fight to obtain a position of power. He said in one interview:

The Taliban say: "Come and accept the post of prime minister and be with us", and they would keep the highest office in the country, the presidentship. But for what price?! The difference between us concerns mainly our way of thinking about the very principles of the society and the state. We can not accept their conditions of compromise, or else we would have to give up the principles of modern democracy. We are fundamentally against the system called "the Emirate of Afghanistan". [170]

There should be an Afghanistan where every Afghan finds himself or herself happy. And I think that can only be assured by democracy based on consensus. [171]

Massoud wanted to convince the Taliban to join a political process leading towards democratic elections in a foreseeable future. [170] Massoud stated that:

The Taliban are not a force to be considered invincible. They are distanced from the people now. They are weaker than in the past. There is only the assistance given by Pakistan, Osama bin Laden and other extremist groups that keep the Taliban on their feet. With a halt to that assistance, it is extremely difficult to survive. [171]

In early 2001 Massoud employed a new strategy of local military pressure and global political appeals. [172] Resentment was increasingly gathering against Taliban rule from the bottom of Afghan society including the Pashtun areas. [172] Massoud publicized their cause "popular consensus, general elections and democracy" worldwide. At the same time he was very wary not to revive the failed Kabul government of the early 1990s. [172] Already in 1999 he started the training of police forces which he trained specifically to keep order and protect the civilian population in case the United Front would be successful. [150]

In early 2001 Massoud addressed the European Parliament in Brussels asking the international community to provide humanitarian help to the people of Afghanistan. [173] He stated that the Taliban and Al Qaeda had introduced "a very wrong perception of Islam" and that without the support of Pakistan the Taliban would not be able to sustain their military campaign for up to a year. [173]

NATO presence and the Emergency Loya Jirga's government Edit

On 9 September 2001, Ahmad Shah Massoud was assassinated by two Arab suicide attackers inside Afghanistan. Two days later about 3,000 people became victims of the September 11 attacks in the United States, when Afghan-based Al-Qaeda suicide bombers hijacked planes and flew them into four targets in the Northeastern United States. Then US President George W. Bush accused Osama bin Laden and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed as the faces behind the attacks. When the Taliban refused to hand over bin Laden to US authorities and to disband al-Qaeda bases in Afghanistan, Operation Enduring Freedom was launched in which teams of American and British special forces worked with commanders of the United Front (Northern Alliance) against the Taliban. [174] At the same time the US-led forces were bombing Taliban and al-Qaeda targets everywhere inside Afghanistan with cruise missiles. These actions led to the fall of Mazar-i-Sharif in the north followed by all the other cities, as the Taliban and al-Qaeda crossed over the porous Durand Line border into Pakistan. In December 2001, after the Taliban government was toppled and the new Afghan government under Hamid Karzai was formed, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) was established by the UN Security Council to help assist the Karzai administration and provide basic security to the Afghan people. [175] [176] The majority of Afghans supported the American invasion of their country. [177] [178]

While the Taliban began regrouping inside Pakistan, the rebuilding of war-torn Afghanistan kicked off in 2002 (see also War in Afghanistan (2001–present)). [179] [180] The Afghan nation was able to build democratic structures over the years by the creation of an emergency loya jirga to set up the modern Afghan government, and some progress was made in key areas such as governance, economy, health, education, transport, and agriculture. NATO is training the Afghan armed forces as well its national police. ISAF and Afghan troops led many offensives against the Taliban but failed to fully defeat them. By 2009, a Taliban-led shadow government began to form in many parts of the country complete with their own version of mediation court. [181] After U.S. President Barack Obama announced the deployment of another 30,000 soldiers in 2010 for a period of two years, Der Spiegel published images of the US soldiers who killed unarmed Afghan civilians. [182]

In 2009, the United States resettled 328 refugees from Afghanistan. [183] Over five million Afghan refugees were repatriated in the last decade, including many who were forcefully deported from NATO countries. [184] [185] This large return of Afghans may have helped the nation's economy but the country still remains one of the poorest in the world due to the decades of war, lack of foreign investment, ongoing government corruption and the Pakistani-backed Taliban insurgency. [186] [187] The United States also accuses neighboring Iran of providing small level of support to the Taliban insurgents. [188] [189] [190] According to a report by the United Nations, the Taliban and other militants were responsible for 76% of civilian casualties in 2009, [191] 75% in 2010 [192] and 80% in 2011. [193]

In October 2008 U.S. Defense Secretary Gates had asserted that a political settlement with the Taliban was the endgame for the Afghanistan war. "There has to be ultimately – and I'll underscore ultimately – reconciliation as part of a political outcome to this," Gates stated. [194] By 2010 peace efforts began. In early January, Taliban commanders held secret exploratory talks with a United Nations special envoy to discuss peace terms. Regional commanders on the Taliban's leadership council, the Quetta Shura, sought a meeting with the UN special representative in Afghanistan, Kai Eide, and it took place in Dubai on January 8. It was the first such meeting between the UN and senior members of the Taliban. [195] On 26 January 2010, at a major conference in London which brought together some 70 countries and organizations, [196] Afghan President Hamid Karzai said he intends to reach out to the Taliban leadership (including Mullah Omar, Sirajuddin Haqqani and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar). Supported by NATO, Karzai called on the group's leadership to take part in a loya jirga meeting to initiate peace talks. These steps have resulted in an intensification of bombings, assassinations and ambushes. [197] Some Afghan groups (including the former intelligence chief Amrullah Saleh and opposition leader Dr. Abdullah Abdullah) believe that Karzai plans to appease the insurgents' senior leadership at the cost of the democratic constitution, the democratic process and progress in the field of human rights especially women's rights. [198] Dr. Abdullah stated:

I should say that Taliban are not fighting in order to be accommodated. They are fighting in order to bring the state down. So it's a futile exercise, and it's just misleading. . There are groups that will fight to the death. Whether we like to talk to them or we don't like to talk to them, they will continue to fight. So, for them, I don't think that we have a way forward with talks or negotiations or contacts or anything as such. Then we have to be prepared to tackle and deal with them militarily. In terms of the Taliban on the ground, there are lots of possibilities and opportunities that with the help of the people in different parts of the country, we can attract them to the peace process provided, we create a favorable environment on this side of the line. At the moment, the people are leaving support for the government because of corruption. So that expectation is also not realistic at this stage. [199]

Afghan President Hamid Karzai told world leaders during the London conference that he intends to reach out to the top echelons of the Taliban within a few weeks with a peace initiative. [200] Karzai set the framework for dialogue with Taliban leaders when he called on the group's leadership to take part in a "loya jirga" – or large assembly of elders – to initiate peace talks. [201] Karzai also asked for creation of a new peacemaking organization, to be called the National Council for Peace, Reconciliation and Reintegration. [200] Karzai's top adviser on the reconciliation process with the insurgents said that the country must learn to forgive the Taliban. [202] In March 2010, the Karzai government held preliminary talks with Hezb-i-Islami, who presented a plan which included the withdrawal of all foreign troops by the end of 2010. The Taliban declined to participate, saying "The Islamic Emirate has a clear position. We have said this many, many times. There will be no talks when there are foreign troops on Afghanistan's soil killing innocent Afghans on daily basis." [203] In June 2010 the Afghan Peace Jirga 2010 took place. In September 2010 General David Petraeus commented on the progress of peace talks to date, stating, "The prospect for reconciliation with senior Taliban leaders certainly looms out there. and there have been approaches at (a) very senior level that hold some promise." [204]

After the May 2011 death of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, many prominent Afghan figures began being assassinated, including Mohammed Daud Daud, Ahmad Wali Karzai, Jan Mohammad Khan, Ghulam Haider Hamidi, Burhanuddin Rabbani and others. [205] Also in the same year, the Pakistani-Afghan border skirmishes intensified and many large scale attacks by the Pakistani-based Haqqani network took place across Afghanistan. This led to the United States warning Pakistan of a possible military action against the Haqqanis in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. [206] The U.S. blamed Pakistan's government, mainly Pakistani Army and its ISI spy network as the masterminds behind all of this. [207]

In choosing to use violent extremism as an instrument of policy, the government of Pakistan, and most especially the Pakistani army and ISI, jeopardizes not only the prospect of our strategic partnership but Pakistan's opportunity to be a respected nation with legitimate regional influence. They may believe that by using these proxies, they are hedging their bets or redressing what they feel is an imbalance in regional power. But in reality, they have already lost that bet. [208]