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  • Author: Muhammad Nasrullah Mirza, Yasir Malik
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: Over the years, the Taliban have overwhelmingly grown in influence and their stature is being well recognized; exerting more pressure on Washington’s future orientation in Afghanistan. Amidst the backdrop of transitions taking place in Afghanistan’s political landscape, the foreseeable future has, ostensibly, rekindled the prospects of peace. Although peace process is gradually moving further, yet both sides are reluctant to compromise on each others’ terms. Since the assumption of power, President Trump’s approach to Afghanistan has been oscillating in consulting varying options to bring the Taliban to their terms rather to indulge, in true spirits, in a widely acknowledged political framework for peace. These chosen policy actions posit more challenges and less opportunities for peace in war-ridden Afghanistan. The emergent scenario requires a comprehensive, well-crafted and compromising structure to be devised, featured with inclusiveness of all stakes and issues involved in this prolonged conflict. Evaluating and analyzing President Trump’s strategic policy toward Afghanistan, this paper aims to explore the manifesting failures and grey areas of Trump’s Afghan strategy and also attempts to provide strategic foresight while considering the framework of endgame in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Taliban, Trump, Negotiation, Exit Strategy
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia, Central Asia, Asia, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Marium Kamal
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: This era is witnessing rising India as a major power in the regional and global affairs. Since 9/11 India is strategically involved in Afghanistan in order to attain her broader agenda and realists‟ ends. India is pursuing her security, political, economic and social objectives in Afghanistan to strengthen her regional hegemonic influence under her smart power. This paper is exploring Indian hegemonic design and the level of Indian concentration and influence in Afghanistan via social means; it also gives comprehensive details about Indian objectives and activities, and what implications are drawn for Pakistan.
  • Topic: Security, International Trade and Finance, Power Politics, Hegemony, Strategic Encirclement
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia, India, Punjab
  • Author: Umar Farooq, Asma Shakir Khawaja
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The article is intended to find out the geopolitical implications, regional constraints and benefits of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Researcher reviewed both published research articles and books to find out geopolitical implication, regional constraints and benefits of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. For this purpose, researcher also reviewed newspapers articles and published reports by government and non-governmental stakeholders working on CPEC. Review of the articles and reports indicated that CPEC had enormous benefits not only for China and Pakistan but also for the whole region. But different internal and external stakeholders are not in favor of successful completion of this project. Extremism, sense of deprivation, lack of political consensus, political instability are some of the internal constraints. On the other hand, Afghanistan, India, Iran, UAE and USA are posing constraints to halt the successful completion of CPEC.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Violent Extremism, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Iran, South Asia, India, Asia, Punjab, United Arab Emirates, United States of America
  • Author: Dayyab Gillani
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The following paper attempts to analyze the ongoing insurgency in Afghanistan by critically evaluating the insurgent ideology, its past, current and future relevance. The paper draws on lessons from the recent Afghanistan history and discusses the irrelevance for the future of Afghanistan. It traces the success of Taliban insurgency by highlighting the role of „mullahs‟ and „madrasas‟ in the Afghan society. It argues that the US policy in Afghanistan thus far has failed to isolate the public from the insurgents, which poses serious present and future challenges. By drawing parallels between the sudden Soviet withdrawal in the early 1990s and a potential US withdrawal in the near future. It also points out that an untimely US withdrawal from Afghanistan may entail an end of US engagement but it will not be an end of war for Afghanistan itself. The essay stresses the importance of a consistent long-term US policy aimed at addressing the very root causes of insurgency in the region.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, War, Military Strategy, Insurgency, Taliban, Islamism
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, South Asia, Central Asia, Punjab, United States of America
  • Author: Nazir Hussain, Amna Javed
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: South Asia is an important but complex region. Its manifold complexity is largely ascribed through historical, economic, political and strategic manifestations. The region has witnessed instability in all the given premises and interactions. The entirety happens to be the fact that the structure of alignments is motivated by security complexes which involve cohesion of foreign powers and regional states. The US, Russia, Iran and China now make out to be contemporary stakeholders in South Asian security equation. Their involvement has been seen as a major reorientation in the regional dynamics in terms of political, economic and security characteristics. The manifold possibilities of re-alignments are what the future of the region will look like. The chance of full-fledged strategic alliance in the face of US-India on the basis of similar political, economic and security interests is on the horizon. As a corollary to this alliance pattern, there is China-Russia-Pakistan alliance which is similar in force but opposite in direction. These two systems are one set of opposition forces to each other, which are also natural in form. Another structure which occurs out of the regional dynamics happens to be of India-Iran-Afghanistan which is a trifecta aiming at Pakistan. On the other hand, Russia-China-Pakistan which could turn into a politically motivated and economically driven alliance and can also cover certain aspects of security. Therefore, due to various changes in order there will stem out various patterns of relationships, which could set the order of the region as one marked by various fluctuating alignment patterns.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Power Politics, Geopolitics, Realignment
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, China, South Asia, North America, Punjab, United States of America
  • Author: Syed Shahbaz Hussain, Ghulam Mustafa, Robina Khan, Muhammad Azhar
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: Peace building is the rehearsal of developing policies that strengthen the peace and re-establish order through social, political and economic reforms. Peace building has shifted its state-centric approach to regional focused agendas for more than a decade.South Asia is a diverse region with a unique geo-strategic significance, socio-political subtleties, and economic diversities. It faces distinct traditional and non-traditional challenges in the process of peace building. South Asia – the home to one third global population faces immense challenges due to weak state structure. The long and persistent influence of external powers in decision making process in South Asia has impacted the political evolution of the states included in the said region. The lack of fundamental necessities has increased the level of frustration and the sense of deprivation, which provides a fertile ground for the prospect of conflicts. The region is often labelled as one of the most dangerous regions on earth due to growing intolerance, extremism, terrorism, insurgencies and rise of various nuclear powers in South Asia. Kenneth Waltz claimed that the anarchic international system is a power that shapes the states behaviour, as the structure of the anarchic system compels states to adopt certain policies. In this exploratory research, an effort has been made to explore and analyze that how anarchic international structure influences and affects the peace building process in South Asia.
  • Topic: Peace Studies, Insurgency, Peacekeeping, Conflict, State
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, South Asia, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Punjab, Bhutan, Maldives, Indian Ocean
  • Author: Ahmad Ejaz
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: South Asia has always been regarded as a significant area for the security interests of the United States. In view of the U.S. threat perceptions in Asia, the American policy makers were constantly motivated to construct a stable security system in the region. The U.S. security programme in South Asia actually is predominantly exerted on United States-Pakistan –India triangular relationship. Given its strategic perspective in the area, the U.S. policy is found transferred. During the Cold War days, the U.S. interests were attached with Pakistan. Thus Pakistan was regarded as the „America‟s most allied ally in Asia.‟ With the end of Cold War, the U.S. policy underwent a tremendous change that subsequently picked India as a potential counterweight to China and called it a „natural partner.‟ Eventually, the U.S.-Pakistan relations had been in a depressing setting. However, in the post 9/11 period, the two countries came closer and collaborated in war against terrorism. But this single-issue alliance could not engulf the differences between the partners. This paper attempts to trace the US security policy and its maneuvering in South Asia during and after the Cold War periods.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Cold War, International Cooperation, International Security, History, Military Strategy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, South Asia, North America, Punjab, United States of America
  • Author: Satnam Singh Deol, Amandeep Kaur Sandhu
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The constant presence of undemocratic regimes, insurgencies and political instability in Afghanistan has continuously resulted into the miserable status of civil and political human rights. Furthermore, the heterogeneous nature of Afghan society and economic under development have deprived the people of social, cultural and economic rights. In 2004, democratic government had been established in Afghanistan under the presidentship of Hamid Karzai. Very obviously, the people at domestic level as well as the international community expected from the democratically elected regime to take concrete initiatives for the promotion and protection of human rights. The study observes that the pioneer democratically elected government of Afghanistan had taken all constitutional measures and legal provisions for the promotion and protection of human rights in Afghanistan which can be expected from a democratic nation. But several political, socio-ethnic and socio-economic circumstances such as frequent violence due to insurgency and counter-insurgency operations, dearth of popular legitimacy to the regime, challenges to political instability along with the orthodox and heterogeneous society, facing acute economic underdevelopment have hampered the actual process of the promotion and protection of human rights in Afghanistan.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Insurgency, Counterinsurgency, Taliban, Military Intervention, Conflict, Violence
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia, Central Asia, Punjab
  • Author: Rukhsana Iftikhar
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: India was comprised of many villages before the arrival of Muslims. Those Muslim invaders, who conquered India and established their rule, essentially belonged to the urban ruling classes. In early Turkish Empire (1206 – 1266), ruling classes have developed numerous urban centers in town across India. In Muslims period, Iqta system provided opportunities to Turko – Afghan communities to have luxurious life style which provoked skill workers, artesian and architect to migrate garrison. These towns also emerge as cultural centers with the passage of time. Early cities like Daultabad, Fatehpur Sikri and Shahjahanabad (Old Delhi) were royal capital cities. Some of the major cities like Kabul, Agra, Allahabad, Lahore, Attock and Multan were developed near major road (Grand Trunk Road). Many towns like Dholpur, Jodhpur, Sirohi, Asirgarh and Ajmer were inhabited near nonmetal led roads . Many of the Mughal cities and towns still exist in spite of many natural disasters. Many European travelers narrated the glory and significance of these cities and towns in their account. They compared Indian cities with Europe, like Fatehpur Sikri was larger than London and Delhi was not less urbanized than Paris. These urban centers were not only the administrative units but also considered as cultural centers in Mughal State. Emperors sometimes generated the economic activities in these urban centers. Abul Fazal mentioned many factories in Delhi, Agra and Fatehpur Sikri supplied many precious articles in the King’s wardrobe. Capital cities always had the excess of fruit and food for the Royal kitchen. People brought their master pieces in the capital city just to get the acknowledgement of kings and nobles. This paper analyzes the development of major urban centers in Mughals (most illustrated dynasty of the Muslim civilization). It also highlights the cultural transformation of Muslims under the influence of native one.
  • Topic: Economics, History, Urbanization, Medieval History
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Asia, Central Asia, India, Punjab
  • Author: Asifa Jahangir, Umbreen Javaid
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The war-torn Afghanistan has long suffered from the dynastical contests and fraught economic strategies of foreigners, which instigated constant internal strife and regional instability. The foreign interventions have made this land a sphere of influence and initiated the great game politics sporadically. This paper attempts to examine the historical geostrategic tussles in Afghanistan between international players on the one hand and regional actors on the other hand over control and manipulation of Afghanistan and its surrounding regions through the lens of conceptual framework of unintended consequences approach, which deals with irrational aspect of foreign policy of the states. This study makes interesting contribution to the existing literature of the [old] Great Game of the late 19th century between Czarist Russia and Great Britain or New Great Game by re-conceptualizing this idea into a new concept of the Grand Great Game or the 3G in place of explaining the unintended consequences of the historical events i.e. the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan of 1979, the post-Cold War era when the regional players Pakistan and India got involved in Afghanistan; and the US invasion of Afghanistan of 9/11 incident. The findings of the paper suggest that the unintended consequences of these historical events are bitter than the reality. The foreign interventions have paralyzed the Afghan society and made it more insecure by promoting clandestine terrorist activities and proxies. The interview technique helps to verify the 3G concept and present its unintended consequences. The critical content analysis of the primary and secondary data is of assistance to understand that the current 3G to be not only multidimensional competition, embodying multiple stakeholders but also incorporating complex self-defined rational as well as irrational foreign policy objectives and national interests.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Terrorism, History, Power Politics, Territorial Disputes, Taliban, Geopolitics, Military Intervention
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Europe, South Asia, India, Punjab, United States of America