Shighnan District is one of the 28 districts of the Badakhshan Province in eastern Afghanistan. It's part of the history region of Shighnan, today divided between Afghanistan and Tajikistan; the district borders the Panj River and Tajikistan in the northeast, the Maimay district to the west, the Raghistan district in the southwest, the Kohistan, Arghanj Khwa, Shuhada districts in the south, the Ishkashim district in the southeast. The Khowar, Tajiks and Pamiris are the major ethnic groups. Pashto and Persian are spoken; this District has a population of 27,750 >Shighnan District
Darwaz-e Bala District
Darwaz-e Bala known as Nusay, is a district in Badakhshan Province, Afghanistan. It was created in 2005 from part of Darwaz District, it is home to 11,000 residents. This district borders the Shekay, Kuf Ab, Maimay districts, along with districts in Darvoz, Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Province, Tajikistan; the district was part of the Darvaz principality, a semi-independent statelet ruled by a mir. Badakhshan Province Map – United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Battle of Maiwand
The Battle of Maiwand on 27 July 1880 was one of the principal battles of the Second Anglo-Afghan War. Under the leadership of Ayub Khan, the Afghans defeated a much smaller force consisting of two brigades of British and Indian troops under Brigadier-General George Burrows. British and Indian forces suffered 177 wounded. Before the battle, the campaign had gone well for the British, they had defeated Afghan tribesmen at Ali Masjid, Peiwar Kotal and the Battle of Ahmed Khel, they had occupied numerous towns and villages, including Kandahar and Jalalabad. Ayub Khan, Sher Ali Khan's younger son, holding Herat during the British operations at Kabul and Kandahar, set out towards Kandahar with a small army in June 1880, a brigade under Brigadier-General Burrows was detached from Kandahar to oppose him. Burrows' brigade, some 2,500 strong with about 500 British troops including a battery of 9-pounder cannons, advanced to Helmand, opposite Gereshk, to oppose Ayub Khan, but was there deserted by the levies of Shere Ali, the British-appointed wali of Kandahar.
Burrows's troops engaged and defeated the rebellious levies and captured 4 smoothbore 6-pounder guns and 2 smoothbore 12-pounders howitzers. Burrows fell back to a position at Kushk-i-Nakhud, halfway to Kandahar where he could intercept Ayub Khan if he headed for either Ghazni or Kandahar, he remained there a week, during which time the captured guns were added to his force with additional gunners drawn from the British infantry. On the afternoon of 26 July information was received that the Afghan force was making for the Maiwand Pass a few miles away. Burrows decided to move early the following day to break-up the Afghan advance guard. At about 10 am horsemen were seen and engaged, the brigade started to deploy for battle. Burrows was not aware; the Afghans numbered 25,000 including Afghan regular troops and five batteries of artillery, including some modern Armstrong guns. The Afghan guns came into action and a three-hour artillery duel ensued at an opening range of about 1,700 yards, during which the British captured smoothbore guns on the left expended their ammunition and withdrew to replenish it.
This enabled the Afghans to force the left hand battalion back. The left flank comprising Indian infantry regiments gave way and rolled in a great wave to the right, the 66th Regiment, as a result of this pressure was swept away by the pressure of the Ghazi attack. E Battery / B Brigade Royal Horse Artillery and a half-company of Bombay Sappers and Miners under Lieutenant Henn stood fast, covering the retreat of the entire British Brigade. E/B RHA kept firing until the last moment, two sections limbering up when the Afghans were 15 yards away, but the third section was overrun. Maclaine was captured and held as a prisoner in Kandahar, where his body was found at Ayub Khan's tent during the British attack on 1 September murdered to prevent his liberation; the British guns captured during the action were recovered at Kandahar. E/B RHA came into action again some 400 yd back; the Sappers and Miners retreated. Henn and 14 of his men afterwards joined some remnants of the 66th Foot and Bombay Grenadiers in a small enclosure at a garden in a place called Khig where a determined last stand was made.
Though the Afghans shot them down one by one, they fired until only eleven of their number were left, the survivors charged out into the masses of the enemy and perished. Henn was the only officer in that band and he led the final charge. Word of the disaster reached Kandahar the following day; this met the retreating force at Kokeran. The British were routed, but managed a withdrawal due to their own efforts and the apathy of the Afghans. Of the 2,476 British troops engaged, the British and Indian force lost 21 officers and 948 soldiers killed, eight officers and 169 men were wounded: the Grenadiers lost 64% of their strength and the 66th lost 62%, including twelve officers, of those present. British and Indian regimental casualties were: 1st Infantry Brigade 66th Regiment of Foot: 286 dead, 32 wounded. 1st Bombay Native Infantry: 366 dead 61 wounded. 30th Bombay Native Infantry: 241 dead, 32 wounded. Bombay Sappers and Miners: 16 dead, 6 wounded. 1st Cavalry Brigade E Battery / B Brigade, Royal Horse Artillery: 19 dead, 16 wounded.
3rd Bombay Light Cavalry: 27 dead, 18 wounded. 3rd Sind Horse: 15 dead, 1 wounded. One estimate of Afghan casualties is 3,000, reflecting the desperate nature of much of the fighting, although other sources give 1,500 Afghan "regulars" and up to 4,000 Ghazis killed, 1500 wounded. Two Victoria Crosses were awarded for acts of valour performed during the battle and during the retreat to Kandahar. Both medals went to members of E/B Battery, RHA. One was awarded to Sergeant Patrick Mullane, for attempting to save the life of a wounded colleague during the withdrawal of their battery from the field; the battle dampened morale for the British side, but was partly a disappointment for Ayub Khan, Governor of Herat and commander of the Afghans in this battle, because he ha
Khakrez District is a rural agrarian community with a population of more than 20,000 located in north-central Kandahar Province. It is the home to one of the oldest historical Islamic sites in Afghanistan, it borders Ghorak District to the west and Panjwai districts to the south and Shah Wali Kot districts to the east and Naish District to the north. The district center is in the village of Darvishan, located in the western part of the district. AIMS District Map
Helmand known as Hillmand or Helman, and, in ancient times, as Hermand and Hethumand is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, in the south of the country. It is the largest province by area; the province contains 13 districts, encompassing over 1,000 villages, 879,500 settled people. Lashkar Gah serves as the provincial capital. Helmand was part of the Greater Kandahar region until made into a separate province by the Afghan government in the 20th century; the province has a domestic airport, in the city of Lashkar Gah and used by NATO-led forces. The British Camp Bastion and U. S. Camp Leatherneck is a short distance southwest of Lashkar Gah; the Helmand River flows through the desert region of the province, providing water used for irrigation. The Kajaki Dam, one of Afghanistan's major reservoirs, is located in the Kajaki district. Helmand is believed to be one of the world's largest opium-producing regions, responsible for around 42% of the world's total production; this is believed to be more than the whole of Burma, the second largest producing nation after Afghanistan.
The region produces tobacco, sugar beets, sesame, mung beans, nuts, onions, tomato, peanut, apricot and melon. Since the 2001 War in Afghanistan, Helmand Province has been a hotbed of insurgent activities, it has been considered to be Afghanistan's "most dangerous" province. Helmand culture of western Afghanistan was a Bronze Age culture of the 3rd millennium BC, it is exemplified by such major sites as Shahr-i Sokhta and Bampur. The term "Helmand civilization" was proposed by M. Tosi; this civilization flourished between 2500 BC and 1900 BC, may have coincided with the great flourishing of the Indus Valley Civilisation. This was the final phase of Periods III and IV of Shahr-i Sokhta, the last part of Mundigak Period IV. According to Jarrige et al.... The pottery of Mundigak I, the earliest occupation of the “Helmand” cultural complex, corresponds to the Mehrgarh III pottery, in technique — quality of the paste and manufacture — as well as in the shapes and decoration within a phase dated to the end of the 5th millennium."
There were links between Shahr-i Sokhta I, II and III periods, Mundigak III and IV periods, between the sites of Balochistan and the Indus valley at the end of the 4th millennium, as well as in the first half of the 3rd millennium BC. Jiroft culture is related to Helmand culture. Jiroft culture flourished in the eastern Iran, the Helmand culture in western Afghanistan at the same time. In fact, they may represent the same cultural area. Mehrgarh culture, on the other hand, is far earlier. Helmand was inhabited by ancient peoples and governed by the Medes before falling to the Achaemenids; the area was part of the ancient Arachosia polity, a frequent target for conquest because of its strategic location in Asia, which connects Southern and Southwest Asia. The Helmand river valley is mentioned by name in the Avesta as Haetumant, one of the early centers or origins of the Zoroastrian faith, in pre-Islamic Afghan history. However, owing to the preponderance of non-Zoroastrians before the Islamization of Afghanistan – Hindus and Buddhists – the Helmand and Kabul regions were known as "White India" in those days.
Some Vedic scholars believe the Helmand valley corresponds to the Sarasvati area mentioned in the Rig Veda as the homeland for the Indo-Aryan migrations into the Indiab Subcontinent, ca. 1500 BCE. It became part of the Seleucid Empire, it came under the rule of the Mauryan emperor Ashoka, who erected a pillar there with a bilingual inscription in Greek and Aramaic. The territory was referred to as part of Zabulistan and ruled by the sun-worshipping Hindus Zunbils before the Muslim Arabs arrived in the 7th century, who were led by Abdur Rahman bin Samara, it fell to the Saffarids of Zaranj and saw the first Muslim rule. Mahmud of Ghazni made it part of the Ghaznavids in the 10th century, who were replaced by the Ghurids. After the destructions caused by Genghis Khan and his Mongol army in the 13th century, the Timurids established rule and began rebuilding Afghan cities. From about 1383 until his death in 1407, it was governed by a grandson of Timur. By the early 16th century, it fell to Babur.
However, the area was contested by the Shia Safavids and Sunni Mughals until the rise of Mir Wais Hotak in 1709. He established the Hotaki dynasty; the Hotakis ruled it until 1738 when the Afsharids defeated Shah Hussain Hotaki at what is now Old Kandahar. In 1747, it submitted to Ahmad Shah Durrani and since remained part of the modern state of Afghanistan; some fighting took place during the 19th century Anglo-Afghan wars between the British and the local Afghans. In 1880, the British assisted the forces of Abdur Rahman Khan in re-establishing Afghan rule over the warring tribes; the area stayed calm for 100 years until the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Helmand was the center of the USAID program in the 1960s to develop the Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority – it became known locally as "little America"; the program laid out tree-lined streets in Lashkar Gah, built a network of irrigation canals and constructed a large hydroelectric dam. The development program was abandoned when pro-Soviet Union forces seized power in 1978, although much of the province is still irrigated by the HAVA.
More the USAID program has contributed to a counter-narcotics initiative called the Alternative Livelihoods Program
Khwahan District, is one of the 28 districts of Badakhshan Province, located in northeastern Afghanistan. The district capital is Khwahan; the population of the district is 27,000. The district borders Raghistan to the southwest, Kuf Ab in the northeast, the Panj River in the northwest, Shuro-obod district, Khatlon Province, of Tajikistan. Kuh-e kallat List of villages and places, of Khwahan District in alphabetical order Darwaz Map at the Afghanistan Information Management Services Its coordinates are 37°53'19" N and 70°13'10" E in DMS or 37.8886 and 70.2194. Its UTM position is XG09 and its Joint Operation Graphics reference is NJ42-11khwahan
Human Terrain System
The Human Terrain System was a United States Army and Doctrine Command support program employing personnel from the social science disciplines – such as anthropology, political science, regional studies, linguistics – to provide military commanders and staff with an understanding of the local population in the regions in which they are deployed. The concept of HTS was first developed in a paper by Montgomery McFate and Andrea Jackson in 2005, which proposed a pilot version of the project as a response to "identified gaps in commanders' and staffs' understanding of the local population and culture", such as became visible during the US invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan. HTS was subsequently launched as a proof-of-concept program, run by the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command, in February 2007, with five HTS teams deployed between Iraq and Afghanistan. Since 2007, HTS has grown from a program with five deployed teams and a $20 million two-year budget to one with 31 deployed teams and a $150 million annual budget.
HTS became a permanent US Army program in 2010. Since its launch, HTS has been surrounded by controversy. While the program received positive coverage in the US media, it became the subject of heavy criticism – from anthropologists, but from journalists, military officials and HTS personnel and former personnel. Most notably, on 31 October 2007, the Executive Board of the American Anthropological Association published a statement opposing HTS as an "unacceptable application of anthropological expertise" that conflicted with the AAA's Code of Ethics. Following the publication of a report on HTS by the Commission on Engagement of Anthropology with the US Security and Intelligence Services in 2009, the AAA released a further statement of disapproval, which they re-iterated in 2012 after rumours that the controversy had died down; the program evolved into a mechanism for supporting security force assistance. The program ended operations on September 30, 2014. In the most immediate sense, HTS was developed as a response to concerns about mismanagement of US military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, and, in particular, to the negative effects of recognized "deficiencies" in US military "cultural understanding" of these countries.
In 2006 the Human Terrain System was launched by the Pentagon, the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense. However, military analysts and academics have suggested earlier historical contexts for the program's development. A number of military officials have invoked Civil Operations and Rural Development Support – a counterinsurgency program developed by the US military during the Vietnam war – as a precedent for HTS. In a foundational article on HTS, a group of military analysts, Kipp et al, described the program as "a CORDS for the 21st Century", their article appraised CORDS as a successful and effective program, "premised on a belief that the war would be won or lost not on the battlefield, but in the struggle for the loyalty of the people". Kipp et al contended that the only major problems with the CORDS program were that it lacked adequate reachback facilities and that it "was started too late and ended too soon"; as such, they argued that it provided "many important lessons" to "guide" the development of HTS as an "effective cultural intelligence program" that could "support tactical and operational-level commanders today".
By contrast, critics of HTS have drawn attention to the fact that, in Vietnam, CORDS was run in conjunction with the Phoenix Program, which used information gathered through CORDS in its effort to "neutralize" supporters of the Viet Cong. The concept of "human terrain" has been defined in military documents pertaining to HTS as "the human population in the operational environment... as defined and characterized by sociocultural and ethnographic data and other non-geographical information". According to Roberto J. Gonzalez, this concept can be traced back to a 1968 report by the House Un-American Activities Committee about "the perceived threat of the Black Panthers and other militant groups", he argues that the concept gained in popularity and usage, in the military and elsewhere, through the writing of military officials, such as Ralph Peters, pundits, such as Max Boot. Commentators on HTS have drawn attention to the long history of anthropological involvement in military operations in the US and Europe, though for different reasons.
In a 2005 article, Montgomery McFate argued that anthropology was born as a "warfighting discipline", having served in its early history as "the handmaiden of colonialism". She suggested that anthropology had retreated "into the Ivory Tower" following the Vietnam war, contended that anthropologists should become involved in developing "military applications of cultural knowledge". David Price noted that anthropology and warfare have "merged" many times before, but argued that the difference with HTS was that the program had been "clearly identified" as involving activities that betrayed "basic ethical standards for protecting the interests and well-being of studied populations". Neil L. Whitehead argued that the "collaboration" between anthropological theory and colonial practice was "nothing new", but went on to suggest that this history – and