Weapons supplies were made available through numerous countries; the United States purchased all of Israel's captured Soviet weapons clandestinely, and then funnelled the weapons to the Mujahideen, while Egypt upgraded their own army's weapons, and sent the older weapons to the militants, Sony VAIO VGN-AW190YCB Battery
Turkey sold their World War II stockpiles to the warlords, and the British and Swiss provided Blowpipe missiles and Oerlikon anti-aircraft guns respectively, after they were found to be poor models for their own forces. China provided the most relevant weapons, likely due to their own experience with guerrilla warfare, and kept meticulous record of all the shipments. Sony VAIO VGN-AW190YDB Battery
The first phase began with the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan and their first battles with various opposition groups. Soviet troops entered Afghanistan along two ground routes and one air corridor, quickly taking control of the major urban centers, military bases and strategic installations. Sony VAIO VGN-AW220J/B Battery
However, the presence of Soviet troops did not have the desired effect of pacifying the country. On the contrary, it exacerbated a nationalistic feeling, causing the rebellion to spread further. Babrak Karmal, Afghanistan's new president, charged the Soviets with causing an increase in the unrest, Sony VAIO VGN-AW230J/H Battery
and demanded that the 40th Army step in and quell the rebellion, as his own army had proved untrustworthy. Thus, Soviet troops found themselves drawn into fighting against urban uprisings, tribal armies (called lashkar), and sometimes against mutinying Afghan Army units. Sony VAIO VGN-AW235J/B Battery
These forces mostly fought in the open, and Soviet airpower and artillery made short work of them.The war now developed into a new pattern: the Soviets occupied the cities and main axis of communication, while the mujahideen, (which the Soviet Army soldiers called 'Dushman,' meaning 'enemy') divided into small groups, waged aguerrilla war. Sony VAIO VGN-AW290JFQ Battery
Almost 80 percent of the country escaped government control. Soviet troops were deployed in strategic areas in the northeast, especially along the road from Termez to Kabul. In the west, a strong Soviet presence was maintained to counter Iranian influence. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41JF Battery
Incidentally, special Soviet units would have[clarification needed] also performed secret attacks on Iranian territory to destroy suspected mujahideen bases, and their helicopters then got engaged in shootings with Iranian jets. Conversely, some regions such as Nuristan, Sony VAIO VGN-AW41JF/H Battery
in the northeast, and Hazarajat, in the central mountains of Afghanistan, were virtually untouched by the fighting, and lived in almost complete independence.
Periodically the Soviet Army undertook multi-divisional offensives into mujahideen-controlled areas. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41MF Battery
Between 1980 and 1985, nine offensives were launched into the strategically important Panjshir Valley, but government control of the area did not improve. Heavy fighting also occurred in the provinces neighbouring Pakistan, where cities and government outposts were constantly under siege by the mujahideen. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41MF/H Battery
Massive Soviet operations would regularly break these sieges, but the mujahideen would return as soon as the coast was clear. In the west and south, fighting was more sporadic, except in the cities of Herat and Kandahar, that were always partly controlled by the resistance. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41XH Battery
The Soviets did not, at first, foresee taking on such an active role in fighting the rebels and attempted to play down their role there as giving light assistance to the Afghan army. However, the arrival of the Soviets had the opposite effect as it incensed instead of pacified the people, causing the mujahideen to gain in strength and numbers. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41XH/Q Battery
Originally the Soviets thought that their forces would strengthen the backbone of the Afghan army and provide assistance by securing major cities, lines of communication and transportation. The Afghan army forces had a high desertion rate and were loath to fight, Sony VAIO VGN-AW41ZF Battery
especially since the Soviet forces pushed them into infantry roles while they manned the armored vehicles and artillery. The main reason though that the Afghan soldiers were so ineffective was their lack of morale as many of them were not truly loyal to the communist government but simply collecting a paycheck. Sony VAIO VGN-AW41ZF/B Battery
Once it became apparent that the Soviets would have to get their hands dirty, they followed three main strategies aimed at quelling the uprising. Intimidation was the first strategy, in which the Soviets would use airborne attacks as well as armored ground attacks to destroy villages, livestock and crops in trouble areas. Sony VAIO VGN-AW50DB/H Battery
The Soviets would bomb villages that were near sites of guerilla attacks on Soviet convoys or known to support resistance groups. Local peoples were forced to either flee their homes or die as daily Soviet attacks made it impossible to live in these areas. Sony VAIO VGN-AW51JGB Battery
By forcing the people of Afghanistan to flee their homes, the Soviets hoped to deprive the guerillas of resources and safe havens. The second strategy consisted of subversion which entailed sending spies to join resistance groups and report information as well as bribing local tribes or guerilla leaders into ceasing operations. Sony VAIO VGN-AW52JGB Battery
Finally, the Soviets used military forays into contested territories in an effort to root out the guerillas and limit their options. Classic search and destroy operations were implemented using Mil Mi-24 helicopter gunships that would provide cover for ground forces in armored vehicles. Sony VAIO VGN-AW53FB Battery
To complement their brute force approach to weeding out the insurgency, the Soviets used KHAD (Afghan secret police) to gather intelligence, infiltrate the mujahideen, spread false information, bribe tribal militias into fighting and organize a governmentmilitia. Sony VAIO VGN-AW70B/Q Battery
While it is impossible to know exactly how successful the KHAD was in infiltrating mujahideen groups, it is thought that they succeeded in penetrating a good many resistance groups based in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. KHAD is thought to have had particular success in igniting internal rivalries and political divisions amongst the resistance groups, Sony VAIO VGN-AW71JB Battery
rendering some of them completely useless because of infighting. The KHAD had some success in securing tribal loyalties but many of these relationships were fickle and temporary. Often KHAD secured neutrality agreements rather than committed political alignment. Sony VAIO VGN-AW72JB Battery
The Sarandoy, a KHAD controlled government militia, had mixed success in the war. Large salaries and proper weapons attracted a good number of recruits to the cause, even if they were not necessarily "pro-communist". The problem was that many of the recruits they attracted were in fact mujahideen who would join up to procure arms, Sony VAIO VGN-AW73FB Battery
ammunition and money while also gathering information about forthcoming military operations.
In 1985, the size of the LCOSF (Limited Contingent of Soviet Forces) was increased to 108,800 and fighting increased throughout the country, making 1985 the bloodiest year of the war. Sony VAIO VGN-AW80NS Battery
However, despite suffering heavily, the mujahideen were able to remain in the field and continue resisting the Soviets.
In the mid-1980s, the Afghan resistance movement, assisted by the United States, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, Egypt, Sony VAIO VGN-AW80S Battery
the People's Republic of China and others, contributed to Moscow's high military costs and strained international relations. The U.S. viewed the conflict in Afghanistan as an integral Cold War struggle, and the CIA provided assistance to anti-Soviet forces through the Pakistani intelligence services, in a program called Operation Cyclone. Sony VAIO VGN-AW80US Battery
A similar movement occurred in other Muslim countries, bringing contingents of so-called Afghan Arabs, foreign fighters who wished to wage jihad against the atheist communists. Notable among them was a young Saudi named Osama bin Laden, whose Arab group eventually evolved into al-Qaeda. Sony VAIO VGN-AW81DS Battery
In the course of the guerrilla war, leadership came to be distinctively associated with the title of "commander". It applied to independent leaders, eschewing identification with elaborate militarybureaucracy associated with such ranks as general. Sony VAIO VGN-AW81JS Battery
As the war produced leaders of reputation, "commander" was conferred on leaders of fighting units of all sizes, signifying pride in independence, self-sufficiency, and distinct ties to local communities. The title epitomized Afghan pride in their struggle against a powerful foe. Sony VAIO VGN-AW81YS Battery
Segmentation of power and religious leadership were the two values evoked by nomenclature generated in the war. Neither had been favored in the ideology of the former Afghan state.
Afghanistan's resistance movement was born in chaos, spread and triumphed chaotically, and did not find a way to govern differently. Sony VAIO VGN-AW82DS Battery
Virtually all of its war was waged locally by regional warlords. As warfare became more sophisticated, outside support and regional coordination grew. Even so, the basic units of mujahideen organization and action continued to reflect the highly segmented nature of Afghan society. Sony VAIO VGN-AW82JS Battery
Olivier Roy estimates that after four years of war, there were at least 4,000 bases from which mujahideen units operated. Most of these were affiliated with the seven expatriate parties headquartered in Pakistan, which served as sources of supply and varying degrees of supervision. Sony VAIO VGN-AW82YS Battery
Significant commanders typically led 300 or more men, controlled several bases and dominated a district or a sub-division of a province. Hierarchies of organization above the bases were attempted. Their operations varied greatly in scope, the most ambitious being achieved by Ahmad Shah Massoud of the Panjshir valley north of Kabul. Sony VAIO VGN-AW83FS Battery
He led at least 10,000 trained troopers at the end of the Soviet war and had expanded his political control of Tajik-dominated areas to Afghanistan's northeastern provinces under the Supervisory Council of the North. Sony VAIO VGN-AW83GS Battery
Roy also describes regional, ethnic and sectarian variations in mujahideen organization. In the Pashtun areas of the east, south and southwest, tribal structure, with its many rival sub-divisions, provided the basis for military organization and leadership. Mobilization could be readily linked to traditional fighting allegiances of the tribal lashkar (fighting force). Sony VAIO VGN-AW83HS Battery
In favorable circumstances such formations could quickly reach more than 10,000, as happened when large Soviet assaults were launched in the eastern provinces, or when the mujahideen besieged towns, such as Khost in Paktia province in July 1983. Sony VAIO VGN-AW90NS Battery
But in campaigns of the latter type the traditional explosions of manpower—customarily common immediately after the completion of harvest—proved obsolete when confronted by well dug-in defenders with modern weapons. Lashkar durability was notoriously short; few sieges succeeded. Sony VAIO VGN-AW90S Battery\
Mujahideen mobilization in non-Pashtun regions faced very different obstacles. Prior to the intervention, few non-Pashtuns possessed firearms. Early in the war they were most readily available from army troops or gendarmerie who defected or were ambushed. Sony VAIO VGN-AW90US Battery
The international arms market and foreign military support tended to reach the minority areas last. In the northern regions, little military tradition had survived upon which to build an armed resistance. Mobilization mostly came from political leadership closely tied to Islam. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CDS Battery
Roy convincingly contrasts the social leadership of religious figures in the Persian- and Turkic-speaking regions of Afghanistan with that of the Pashtuns. Lacking a strong political representation in a state dominated by Pashtuns, minority communities commonly looked to pious learned or charismatically revered pirs (saints) for leadership. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CJS Battery
Extensive Sufi and maraboutic networks were spread through the minority communities, readily available as foundations for leadership, organization, communication and indoctrination. These networks also provided for political mobilization, which led to some of the most effective of the resistance operations during the war. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CYS Battery
The mujahideen favoured sabotage operations. The more common types of sabotage included damaging power lines, knocking out pipelines and radio stations, blowing up government office buildings, air terminals, hotels, cinemas, and so on. From 1985 through 1987, Sony VAIO VGN-AW91DS Battery
an average of over 600 "terrorist acts" a year were recorded. In the border region with Pakistan, the mujahideen would often launch 800 rockets per day. Between April 1985 and January 1987, they carried out over 23,500shelling attacks on government targets. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91JS Battery
The mujahideen surveyed firing positions that they normally located near villages within the range of Soviet artillery posts, putting the villagers in danger of death from Soviet retaliation. The mujahideen used land mines heavily. Often, they would enlist the services of the local inhabitants, even children. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91YS Battery
They concentrated on both civilian and military targets, knocking out bridges, closing major roads, attacking convoys, disrupting the electric power system and industrial production, and attacking police stations and Soviet military installations and air bases. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CDS Battery
They assassinated government officials and PDPA members, and laid siege to small rural outposts. In March 1982, a bomb exploded at the Ministry of Education, damaging several buildings. In the same month, a widespreadpower failure darkened Kabul when a pylon on the transmission line from the Naghlu power station was blown up. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CJS Battery
In June 1982 a column of about 1,000 young communist party members sent out to work in the Panjshir valley were ambushed within 30 km of Kabul, with heavy loss of life. On September 4, 1985, insurgents shot down a domestic Bakhtar Airlines plane as it took off from Kandahar airport, killing all 52 people aboard. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CYS Battery
Mujahideen groups used for assassination had three to five men in each. After they received their mission to kill certain government officials, they busied themselves with studying his pattern of life and its details and then selecting the method of fulfilling their established mission. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92DS Battery
They practiced shooting at automobiles, shooting out of automobiles, laying mines in government accommodation or houses, using poison, and rigging explosive charges in transport.
In May 1985, the seven principal rebel organizations formed the Seven Party Sony VAIO VGN-AW92JS Battery
Mujahideen Alliance to coordinate their military operations against the Soviet army. Late in 1985, the groups were active in and around Kabul, unleashing rocket attacks and conducting operations against the communist government.
By mid-1987 the Soviet Union announced it would start withdrawing its forces. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92YS Battery
Sibghatullah Mojaddedi was selected as the head of the Interim Islamic State of Afghanistan, in an attempt to reassert its legitimacy against the Moscow-sponsored Kabul regime. Mojaddedi, as head of the Interim Afghan Government, met with then Vice President of the United StatesGeorge H. W. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93FS Battery
Bush, achieving a critical diplomatic victory for the Afghan resistance. Defeat of the Kabul government was their solution for peace. This confidence, sharpened by their distrust of the United Nations, virtually guaranteed their refusal to accept a political compromise. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93GS Battery
The first step of the Soviet Union's exit strategy was to transfer the burden of fighting the mujahideen to the Afghan armed forces, with the aim of preparing them to operate without Soviet help. During this phase, the Soviet contingent was restricted to supporting the DRA forces by providing artillery, Sony VAIO VGN-AW93HS Battery
air support and technical assistance, though some large-scale operations were still carried out by Soviet troops.
Under Soviet guidance, the DRA armed forces were built up to an official strength of 302,000 in 1986. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZFS Battery
To minimize the risk of a coup d'état, they were divided into different branches, each modeled on its Soviet counterpart. The ministry of defence forces numbered 132,000, the ministry of interior 70,000 and the ministry of state security (KHAD) 80,000. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZGS Battery
However, these were theoretical figures: in reality each service was plagued with desertions, the army alone suffering 32,000 per year.
The decision to engage primarily Afghan forces was taken by the Soviets, but was resented by the PDPA, who viewed the departure of their protectors without enthusiasm. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZHS Battery
In May 1987 a DRA force attacked well-entrenched mujahideen positions in the Arghandab District, but the mujahideen held their ground, and the attackers suffered heavy casualties. In the spring of 1986, an offensive into Paktia Province briefly occupied the mujahideen base at Zhawar only at the cost of heavy losses. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ11EN Battery