In Afghanistan’s Unwinnable War, What’s the Best Loss to Hope For?

Militants (Taliban) faction in Afghanistan. Source:

Afghanistan’s is still struggling for their peace configuration. According to the proposed solutions before, I have considered choosing the third option: Somalian Model. The third option offered the state’s social community to find its own peace mechanism. Let’s take a look of brief Afghanistan history. Afghanistan was torn by war since late 1979 when the communist groups take over the government. They deposed the old monarchy system and established the Afghan Democratic Republic when the following counter-coup was arranged by religious and leaders in Afghan outskirts capital[1]. The rebellion war against pro- the Soviet government was the rage on as declared as ‘jihad against communist’[2] as they are considered the enemy of Islam until Taliban came to power in 1996 and then attacked by America in 2001 with cursed the Taliban sheltered Al – Qaeda there[3].

Percentage of Afghan Ethnic Composition
Ethnic Composition in Afghanistan. Source:

The Somalian model seems ideal and applicable to Afghanistan problems. First, the Somalia and Afghanistan had quite same social – demography, for instance, the Somali demographies consisted with 6 clans all across the land[1]. By 2004, the Pashtun is the majority clan in Afghan with shares 42% of the total population[2]. This means the Pashtun are associated and supported the Taliban group which emerged from 1994 from former madrasahs students and radical Islamist group.[3] This movement (Taliban) was opposed by the rest of ethnic such Tajik, Uzbek, Hazara and the rest later formed called the Northern Alliance until the US-led invasion to Afghanistan in 2001 to deposed Taliban and install democracy government. The US-backed provisional held the first free election in 2004 and Hamid Karzai won over his rivals. However, the Karzai government didn’t have enough authority in the rural area where the Taliban presence is strong, only in Kabul and other Afghan major cities.[4] That means the Afghan official government is not widely accepted in Afghan society since the basic rules of government to get authority they must be widely accepted and obeyed among societies.

Afghanistan is a failed state since then, from ethnic – cleansing to the rivalities of three ideology in Central Asia (traditionalism, secularism, and Islamism) make the Afghan social hierarchy broken. This situation in Afghanistan similarly same with Somalia which composed by multi-ethnic groups and different ideology (Islamist and democracy). The lack authorities of the central government in Somalia since they only really had authority in Somalia major cities such Mogadishu, by this condition had forced them to self – govern community for each ethnic in results Somalia led into second civil war, the struggle among the armed group to seize control over Somalia. By 1995 – 2005 Somalia was divided into 3 occupied-area which led by the different armed group with the rise of Al – Shabaab, a hardline extremist group in early 2007[5].

Similarly to the Afghan solution that I prefer chose before, the consequence phase of this solution was the rise of warlords and the armed group which proved in Somalia divided into 3 different occupied zones. I agreed with the third solution to let the Afghan society find the best way to re-integrate for peace solution even the risk of emergence Taliban power and warlords, the self – govern community will give them best initiative for configuring the peace attempt and reach a consensus situation beside ethics rivalities.

There were some reasons why the third solution will likely to be implemented in Afghanistan. First, based on mentioned before the Afghan and Somalian demography is not far different, composed by multi-ethnic, clan, and political ideology. The war raging on in Afghan are caused by ethnic – domination struggle to control over Afghanistan. Centralized government like western model ongoing today only bring small effect for Afghanistan nation building, they forgot the current government is not widely accepted in Afghanistan society since the Afghan are ethnocentric.

Second, the federal government would create a wide-platform with the result broad government which tend to accommodate all the ethnic and faction in Afghanistan as were did in Somalia. Federal government headquartered in the capital city Kabul while outside the capital will be governed by dominated specified ethnics such Pashtun, Tajik and Hazara.

Third, the federal government at least give them the initiative to govern herself as they know their local social culture, values, norms, tradition. It only can be achieved when every party (ethnics) respectfully tolerate the other ethnic norms.

In conclusion, Afghanistan was longtime torn up by war with devastating results. The struggle of ethnic for power seizure and ideology – based motivation also fueled with the Afghanistan neighbor state supplying arms make the situation worsening. The Somalian Model would solve the Afghanistan problem since they identically had the same conflict root and type.

Even though Somalian Model has the risk for the rise of warlord and Taliban, it will give an opportunity for Afghanistan society to configure itself for peace founding as were achieved in Somalia 2012 by Federal Government. But in some cases, the security issues still not solved, at least the intensity of conflict will be decreased at some level.


[1] Cepkemoi, Ethnic Groups and Clans in Somalia,

[2], Afghanistan, Accessed on March 16, 2018

[3], Taliban, Accessed on March 17, 2018

[4] Shaista Wahab and Barry Youngerman, A Brief History of Afghanistan, p. 238 – 239

[5], Al-Shabaab: Somali Militant Group, Accessed on March 17, 2018

[1] Shaista Wahab and Barry Youngerman, A Brief History of Afghanistan, p. 171

[2] Carter Malkasian, War Comes to Garmser: Thirty Years of  Conflict on the Afghan Frontier,

[3] DR. Sebastian Gorka, Defeating Jihad- The Winnable War, p.27



Bonosky, P., 2001. Afghanistan Washington’s Secret War. 2nd ed. New York: International Publishers.

Coburn, N., 2016. Losing Afghanistan an Orbituary for the Intervention. California: Stanford University Press.

Goodson, L. P., 2001. Afghanistan’s Endless War. New York: University of Washington Press.

Malkasian, C., 2013. War Comes to Garmser. New York: Oxford University Press.

Wahab, S. & Youngerman, B., 2007. A Brief History of Afghanistan. New York: Facts on File.

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