|Kingdom of Afghanistan
د افغانستان واکمنان
Dǝ Afġānistān wākmanān
|Motto: خدا قدرت ما است
"God is our strength"
|Anthem: سرود ملی
Location of Afghanistan
|Largest largest city||Kabul|
|-||King||Arshia Hirad Shah|
|-||Crown Prince||Rashid Shah|
|-||Prime Minister||Farsheed Keshuapad|
|-||Independence (from the United Kingdom)||19 August 1919|
|-||Monarchy abolished||17 July 1973|
|-||Monarchy re-established||30 April 1978|
|-||Total|| 647,500 km2
251,772 sq mi
|GDP (PPP)||2011 estimate|
|GDP (nominal)||2011 estimate|
|HDI (2011)||.563 (high)|
|Currency||Afgani (افغانی) (
|Time zone||D† (UTC+4:30)|
|Daylight savings is not observed|
The history of modern Afghanistan began in 1919 following the Third Anglo-Afghani War, in which Afghanistan gained total independence from the United Kingdom, andthe ability to handle its foreign affairs as a fully sovereign nation. Following the war with Britain, Afghanistan's government began making moves toward gaining aid in moving toward modernization and maintaining its sovereignty drig the Intewar Era. The Soviet Union and the British Empire saught to influence the nation and foothold in the region and use the nation as a buffer state between British India and the Central Asian Soviet republics of the USSR. However, Afghanistan played this bickering in its favor, using both powers to aid th nation, and gain a number of lucrative deals in the process. The Afghani ruler managed to secure a number of favorable deals with the Soviets, which resulted in the formation of the Afghani Air Force. The king also sought with the aid of his wife, to increase the equality of women in the kingdm as well as increase the standard of living.
During the early-1930s, Afghanistan began to falter under the rule of Mohammed Nadir Shah, who abolished many of his precessor's reforms, and ruled as a military dictator for the reminder of his rule. He was viewed by many of his subjects as an agent of Britain, as many of his political moves were favorable to the country's old master. In 1933, he was assassinated during a graduation ceremony by a teenager. The teen was apprehended and cut to pieces, afterwhich his family members were hanged, including his father and uncle. Mohammed Nadir Shah was replaced by Mohammed Zahir Shah, who began work on rebuilding the country and re-establishing the old reforms as well as continuing the hasty modernization of Afghanistan. His plans met opposition early on, but he was able to move ahead with his goals.
Cold War EraEdit
During the 1950s, Afghanistan experience dramatic economic growth and underwent swepting political and cultural reforms. As an ally of the West, Afghanistan benefitted from a capitalist economic system, and saw a number of businesses investing in the country as it became clearer the country was on the right track toward becoming a first world nation. The military was very modern, using weapons that many had first thought the Afghans incapable of wielding properly, and the status of women, while still somewhat limited, was beter than it had ever been in the past. However, for some, these reforms were too fast, and for others, they were flying in the face of everything the Afghan culture stood for. Thus in 1973, while King Zahir Shah was in Italy recieving eye treatment and a number of other medical procedures, his cousin, the Prime Minister of Afghanistan, took over the country.
The nation was nearly run into ground, and turned to the Soviets for aid, in which the economy was nearly destroyed as the free market so painfully set up began to implode under the new state-run command economy. This led to a series of riots as the economy collapsed, and many return to better days of freer lives of the past, overthrew the Communist-backed government, and re-established the monarchy in 1978. The Soviets threatened to invade Afghanistan and re-install the puppet leader, but international pressure prevented any such plan from coming to fruitition. The former king refused to return, stating he didn't wish to rule after his abdictation in 1973, and was no longer interested in politics. Thus, another influential Afghan, Maziar Shah, was installed as te new king of Afghanistan on April 30th of 1978.
The Afghan Armed Forces, is the official military force of Afghanistan, responsible for protecting the integrity and security of the nation. The military maintains a force of some 260,000 men, and as of 1998, women as well. It is composed of two branches, the Afghan National Army and the Afghani Air Force. As the country is landlocked, it possesses no navy. The army consists of 238,000 troops, and the air force some 22,000 personnel, 450 aircraft, and 120 rotary aircraft. The military is based out of the city of Kabul, though plans to move the headquarters to the capital of Darul Aman are underway, and a military district in the royal city is under construction. The military maintains numerous bases all across the country, such as Bagram Air Base, which is currently the largest military base in the country, and home to the majority of the air force's aircraft as well as missiles. Afghanistan lacks nuclear weapons, and there are no plans to either build or purchase them from any state.
Dari (Persian) and Pashto are the official languages of the kingdom, as well as the most commonly spoken langagues of daily life in Afghanistan. Many have mistakenly believed Arabic to the most common language in Afghanistan, but the nation has always spoken Persian, and later Pashto. Afghanistan was for the majority of its history a part of Persia, and very few times part of the many Arab caliphates that ruled over Persia. When it was apart of a caliphate, the Arab rulers never had much control over the region, and never fully supplanted Dari or Pashto as the regional language of the population. Persian had alway been the lingua franca of the region and was used for writting many religious documents of the Afghans. As far as native tongue goes, Pashto had been the second language of te people, and remaind so down to the modern day, though it never replaced Persian as the regional favorite.
For most of the nation's history, Afghans had always had poor healthcare. Only in recent history, no more than a generation or two, did modern medicine reach the people. During the 1950-60s, the government sought expand healthcare to rural areas and the other major cities, as Kabul had always been the focus of government's attempt to modernize the country. Several major hospitals were established outside of the capital, and the populace of the royal city which had needed to rely on travelling to and from Kabul for medicial treatment, were gifted with the contruction of Amanullah Khan General Hospital, which grew to become the largest and most modern medical facility in the country. As of 2012, Afghans can expect to live far longer than their ancestors. The life expectancy for men is 73.4 years, and 71.8 years for women.
The majority of the Afghan population, some 99% of the nation, is Muslim, with 80-85% of the people belonging to the Sunni sect of Islam, and the other 15-19% belonging to the Shi'a sect. The other 1% of the population belongs to varying religions such as Buddhism, which before the Persian conquest of Afghanistan, was the dominant religion. There is a small portion of the population which belongs to the Sikh and Hindu faiths, and before the mass migration to the United States and Israel, there was a small Jewish community in Afghanistan.