Making Sense of Russia’s Policy in Afghanistan Russie.Nei.Reports, No. 24, Ifri, September 2018
For some time, Western sources have been accusing Moscow of backing the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.
However, little effort has been done to analyze the modalities of this support and the way it relates to Moscow's overall policies and objectives in Central and Southern Asia. This essay sets out to explain both the trend in Russia’s policies towards Afghanistan between 2013 and 2017, and the reasons underneath them. It explores Russia's actions vis-à-vis contending forces in Afghanistan and Central Asia in the broader context of Moscow’s rapprochement with Pakistan, its ties to India and China and overall anti-Americanism that has grown exponentially since 2014. We argue that this approach would provide a better understanding of Russia’s policies and objectives in Afghanistan.
Stephen Blank has been a Senior Fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington since 2013.
Younkyoo Kim is Professor in the Division of International Studies and Director of the Center for Energy Governance & Security at Hanyang University, Seoul.