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Dr. Antonio Giustozzi

Expert on Afghanistan with experience of producing several hundred expert reports on asylum cases from 2004 onwards on all aspects of Afghanistan. Has acted as expert witness in trials in the UK, US, Australia and the Netherlands. From 2014 he has produced over 100 reports on Pakistani asylum seekers. From 2019 he started producing reports on Syria and Iraq and in 2020 he started producing reports on Iran. Has published extensively (boors, papers, journal articles and media) on many topics related to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

Dr. Antonio Giustozzi
Independent Researcher and Analyst, affiliated with King’s College London and the Royal United Services Institute

Over the last 25 years The Expert has covered most aspects of Afghanistan politics, security and social and economic issues in several books and tens of articles and reports. The Expert's engagement with Pakistan is more recent and mostly focused on insurgent groups, especially jihadists ones. But The Expert has covered the repression of dissident groups as well in their reports. Three years ago The Expert started working on Syria and two years ago on Iraq, mostly covering militias, security forces and insurgent groups.


The Expert has produced over 1,000 expert reports on Afghanistan, plus hundreds of verification reports of documents issued in Afghanistan (IDs, police documents, Taliban threat letters, etc.);


The Expert has also produced 100 expert reports on Pakistan and about 25 verification reports of police FIRs and other documents;


The Expert has now started producing country and verification reports in Syria,  Iraq and Iran, after setting up a network of local collaborators.



Books, as sole author or co-author:





Books, as sole author or co-author:


The Taliban at war, London : Hurst, 2019


The Islamic State in Khorasan, London ; Hurst, 2018


[with Artemy Kalinovsky] Missionaries of modernity: Advisory Missions and the Struggle for Hegemony, from the 1940s to Afghanistan, London : Hurst, 2016


The Army of Afghanistan: a political history of a fragile institution, London : Hurst, 2016


[with Mohammad Ishaqzadeh] Policing Afghanistan: The Politics of the Lame Leviathan, London : Hurst, 2013


The Art of Coercion: The primitive accumulation and management of coercive power, London : Hurst, 2011


Empires of mud: wars and warlords of Afghanistan, London : C. Hurst & Co and New York : Columbia University Press, 2009


Koran, Kalashnikov and Laptop: the rise of the Neo-Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan, London : C.Hurst & Co. and New York : Columbia University Press, 2007.


War, politics and society in Afghanistan, 1978-1992, London : C. Hurst & Co. and Georgetown University Press, 2000.


Books, as editor:


Post-conflict Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration: bringing state-building back in, Hants ; Ashgate, 2012.


Decoding the New Taliban: Insights from the Afghan field, London : C. Hurst & Co and New York : Columbia University Press, 2009.



Other publications:


‘More War, Insurgency and Counter-Insurgency’, in B. Rubin, What Everyone Ought to Know about Afghanistan, Oxford : OUP, forthcoming 2020


‘Flawed Afghanisation: Underestimating and Misunderstanding the Taliban’, in David Fitzgerald, David Ryan, and John M. Thompson (eds.), Not even past: How the United States Ends Wars, New York ; Berghan Books, forthcoming 2019


‘Il volto del nemico. Com’è cambiato e cosa vuole il movimento talebano’, in E. Giordana, La grande illusione  / 40 anni di guerra in Afghanistan, Torino : Rosenberg & Sellier, 2019


‘Major territorial defeat severely undermines Islamic State presence in eastern Afghanistan’, Jane’s Terrorism and Security Monitor, 12 Dec 2019


‘Nomad-settler conflict in Afghanistan today’, Kabul : AREU, October 2019


‘Rise and Decline of Al-Qaida in Syria’, Washington : CRPA, October 24, 2019


‘I Taliban e le elezioni afghane: una strategia, tre obiettivi’, in Giuliano Battiston and Nicola Missaglia, ‘Presidenziali in Afghanistan: molto più di un voto’, Milan : ISPI, 26 September 2019


‘Nomad Sedentarisation Processes in Afghanistan and Their Impact on Conflict’, Kabul : AREU, September 2019


‘TTP leadership strives to reverse trend of defections and splintering in Pakistan and Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 4 September 2019


‘Potential open emergence of Shia militia in Afghanistan unlikely to pose high threat to NATO or US forces’, Jane’s Terrorism and Security Monitor, 15 Aug 19


‘The Islamic State in Khorasan’, in Francesco Marone (ed.), The Islamic State: Five Years Later, Milan : ISPI, 28 June 2019


 ‘Resurgent Islamic State fighting to establish territorial control in eastern Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 20 June 2019


‘Between pen and sword: Examining the Taliban’s ongoing strategic calculus’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 27 Mar 19


‘Putin's Masterpiece: Russia's Military and Diplomatic Role in Syria through Syrian and Iranian Eyes’, in “Russia’s policy in Syria and in the Middle East”, GWU, CAP paper no. 212, January 2019


‘Trump’s Decision to Withdraw from Syria and Afghanistan’, CRPA, December 22, 2018


‘The Role of the Afghan State in Managing Nomadism and Nomad/Settler Conflict’, Kabul : AREU,

December 2018


‘Afghanistan and Pakistan: Five Terrorisms’, in Sergio Miracola and Antonio Talia (eds.), ‘Terrorism and Counterterrorism in Asia: A Compass’, Milan : ISPI, 11 December 2018


[with Shoib Najafizada]‘Assad’s Afghan Shi’a Volunteers’, Washington : CRPA, 13 November 2018


‘Russia and Iran in Syria: Diverging Paths?’, Washington : CRPA, 28 October 2018


‘The Taliban and Afghanistan’s mines’, Briefing Paper, Washington : CRPA, October 2018


‘I Talebani, lo Stato Islamico e le elezioni afghane’, ISPI Commentary, 18 October 2018 (…)


‘Taliban offensive rolls back Islamic State expansion in northern Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 10 Sep 18


‘IS-Khorasan Towards Financial Autonomy’, Washington : CRPA, September 2018


‘Assault on Ghazni underlines Taliban’s growing urban assault capabilities’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 30 Aug 18


‘Two campaigns for the labs: heroin, Taliban and US’, Kabul/Washington : CRPA, August 2018


‘Daesh Moves House: Settling in to Life in Afghanistan’, RUSI Newsbrief, 18 May 2018


‘The Islamic State’s crisis: sunset of militant Islamism in Central Asia?’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 3 May 2018

[with Anna Matveeva] ‘The Central Asian militants: cannon fodder of global jihadism or revolutionary vanguard?’, Small Wars and Insurgencies, n. 3 2018

‘Farah attack marks early launch of Taliban’s 2018 campaign’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 2 March 2018


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Al-Qaeda’s growing confrontation with the Islamic State in Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 6 February 2018

‘Typologies of nomad-settler conflict in Afghanistan’, Kabul : AREU, 2018

‘Kabul e Talebani: a che punto è il processo negoziale?’, ISPI, 2 February 2018

[with Ali Mohammad Ali] ‘The National Unity Government and the Re-Shaping of Political Coalitions in Afghanistan’, Washington : CRPA, January 2018

[with Silab Mangal] ‘The Red Brigade: the Taliban’s special forces play growing role in conflict’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 5 December 2017

'Enemies or jihad brothers? Relations between Taliban and Islamic State', Washington : CRPA, 2017

‘The Arab-Gulf connections of the Taliban’, in C. Jaffrelot and L. Louer (eds), Pan-Islamic Connections, London : Hurst, 2017

‘The transformation of the Haqqani Network’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 2 November 2017

‘The failure of the Taliban’s 2017 urban offensive’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 27 October 2017

[with Reinoud Leenders] ‘Outsourcing state violence: The National Defence Force, ‘stateness’ and regime resilience in the Syrian war’, Mediterranean Politics, n. 4, vol. 22, 2017


‘Signs of Taliban reconciliations emerge in southern Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 27 September 2017


‘The Hizb-i Islami Deal: Dawn of Reconciliation or Sunset of NUG?’, Kabul : AF-CRPA, September 5, 2017


‘Afghanistan: Taliban’s organization and structure’, Oslo : Landinfo, August 2017


‘Afghanistan: Taliban’s Intelligence and the intimidation campaign’, Oslo : Landinfo, August 2017


‘Mapping nomad-farmer conflict in Afghanistan’, Kabul : AREU, July 2017


‘The Military Cohesion of the Taliban’, Kabul : AF-CRPA, July 2017


‘Presence of Shia Muslim militia in Afghanistan becomes more overt’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Centre, 20 July 2017


[with Artemy M. Kalinovsky] ‘The professional middle class in Afghanistan: from pivot of development to political marginality’, in Humanity Journal, Volume 8 issue 2, 2017


‘Uighur Islamist militancy in Syria: Between Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 20 June 2017


[with Ali Mohammed Ali] ‘The Trump Administration and the Afghan predicament’, Kabul : AF-CRPA, n.d. but May 2017


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Islamic State's Wilayat Khorasan persists in Afghanistan despite major US strike’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 5 May 2017


‘Shifting ground: Competition intensifies between the Islamic State and Al-Qaeda for Central Asian support’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 25 Apr 2017


‘Counterinsurgency Challenge in Post-2001’, Afghanistan, Small Wars & Insurgencies, 28:1, 2017, 12-33


‘New power struggle within Taliban underlines weak position of leader Haibatullah’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 25 Jan 2017


[with Silab Mangal], ‘Dissident Taliban faction establishes relations with the Islamic State's Wilayat Khorasan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 04-Jan-2017


‘The Taliban and the 2014 presidential elections in Afghanistan’, Conflict, Security & Development, 16:6, December 2016, pp. 557-573


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Back on the offensive - Wilayat Khorasan reasserts itself in Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 13-Dec-2016


‘The resurgence of Shia Muslim militancy in Pakistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 27-Oct-2016


[with Silab Mangal] ‘An assessment of the 2016 fighting season of the Taliban’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 06-Oct-2016


‘Jihadists compete along Af-Pak border’, Jane's Intelligence Review, 27-Sep-2016


‘Islamist militancy reportedly expands into Turkmenistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 13-Sep-2016


‘Appointment of military commander highlights Taliban's internal power struggles’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 08-Sep-2016


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Wilayat Khorasan unleashes new wave of violence but loses leader’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 06-Sep-2016


‘Wilayat Khorasan commander provides insight on deployments to Syria and Iraq’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 16-Jun-2016


[with Silab Mangal] ‘The strategic implications of the Taliban's seeming leadership change’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 20-May-2016


 [with Claudio Franco] ‘Revolution in the Counter-Revolution: Efforts to Centralize the Taliban’s Military Leadership’, Central Asian Affairs 3 (2016) 249-286


[with Silab Mangal], ‘The Haqqani Network and the Taliban leadership crisis’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 30 March 2016


[with Silab Mangal], ‘An Interview with Mullah Rasool on Reconciliation between the Taliban and the Afghan Government’, RUSI Commentary, 16 March 2016


  1. Ali Mohammed Ali] ‘The Afghan National Army after ISAF’, Kabul : AREU, March 2016


  1. Islamic State in Khorasan: a nuanced view’, London : RUSI, February 2016


[with Chona Echavez, Jennifer Lyn Bagaporo and Nader Nadery] ‘The Political Economy Of Education and Health Service Delivery In Afghanistan’, Kabul : AREU, January 2016


[with Mohammed Ishaqzadeh] Senior Appointments And Corruption Within Kabul City Police: Practices and Perceptions, Kabul : Integrity Watch Afghanistan, December 2015


  1. Rights, Taliban, and Reconciliation: An Overview’, Central Asia Policy Brief No. 30, Central Asia Program, George Washington University, December 2015


[with Ali Mohammad Ali] ‘Reaching Boiling Point: High School Activism in Afghanistan’, Kabul : AREU, October 2015


[with Emily Winterbotham], ‘The Fall of Kunduz and the Resurgent Taliban’, RUSI Newsbrief 26/11/2015


[with Silab Mangal], ‘A gathering storm? The Islamic State campaign in eastern Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 13-Nov-2015


‘The Taliban and the ‘Pakistani reservoir’: On the importance of the Afghan community in Pakistan for the Taliban’s military effort’, in S. Gregory (ed.), Democratic Transition and Security in Pakistan, London : Routledge, 2015


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Building momentum – the Taliban's territorial manoeuvres in Helmand’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 05-Nov-2015


  1. Silab Mangal] Assessing the Taliban's capture of Kunduz and its ongoing implications

IHS Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 15 October 2015


[with Silab Mangal] ‘The Taliban in Pieces: The Internal Struggle Behind the Announcement of Mullah Omar's Death’, Foreign Affairs Snapshot, 3 August 2015


[with Ali Mohammad Ali] ‘The Politicisation of Afghanistan’s High Schools’, Kabul : AREU, July 2015


[With Mohammed Ishaqzadeh] ‘Senior Appointments and Corruption within the Afghan MoI: practices and perceptions’, Kabul : Integrity Watch Afghanistan, May 2015


‘The splintering Taliban: examining the proliferation of dissident factions in Afghanistan’, Jane's Terrorism & Insurgency Monitor, 6 March 2015


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Taking shape: The Islamic State expands into Pakistan with Tehrik-e-Khilafat’, Jane’s Terrorism and Insurgency Monitor, 30 January 2015, 7 pages


‘The Black Market for weapons in Afghanistan’, in Small Arms Survey, ‘The illicit firearms market: case studies and insights’, Geneva, 2015


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Iranian insurgent groups maintain Baluch threat’, IHS Jane’s Intelligence Review, 2 January 2015, 8 pages


[with Silab Mangal] ‘Violence, the Taliban and Afghanistan’s 2014 elections’, Washington ; USIP, 2015


‘Local and Tactical Political Accommodation: Evidence from Afghanistan’, in T. Clack And R. Johnson (eds.), Transition, Handover and Withdrawal: Historical, Theoretical and Applied Approaches to Exit, Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2014


‘Parable of a Taliban commander - The rise and fall of Mullah Zakir’, Jane’s Terrorism and Insurgency Monitor, 1 December 2014, 10 pages


‘End game: the IMU shifts its jihadist strategy’, IHS Jane’s Intelligence Review, Vol. 26, n. 11, November 2014


[with Adam Baczko] ‘The Politics of the Taliban’s Shadow Judiciary, 2003–2013’, Central Asian Affairs, 1 – 2014, 199-224


‘The Afghan National Army: Sustainability Challenges beyond Financial Aspects, Kabul : AREU, 2014


‘The Taliban’s military courts’, Small Wars and Insurgencies, vol. 25, n. 2, 2014.


‘Afghanistan’s decentralised foreign policy’, Central Asian Affairs, 1-2014 (March)


‘The Taliban and the 2014 elections in Afghanistan’, Washington : USIP, 2014


[with Casey Johnson] ‘Electoral Offensive: Taliban Planning for Afghanistan’s elections’, Peace brief 163, Washington : USIP, 2013


[with Mohammed Ishazadeh] ‘On Afghanistan’s roads: extortion and abuse against drivers’, Kabul : IWA, 2013


[with Claudio Franco] ‘The Ongoing Battle for the Schools: Uprisings, Negotiations and Taleban Tactics’, Berlin ; Afghanistan Analyst Network, 2013


‘March towards democracy?  The development of political movements in Afghanistan’, Central Asian Survey, September 2013


‘The next Congo: Regional Competition for Influence in the Wake of NATO Withdrawal’, Afghanistan Regional Forum n. 10, Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University, September 2013


[with Theo Farrell] ‘The Taliban at War: Inside the Helmand Insurgency, 2004-2012’, International Affairs, July 2013


 ‘The military adaptation of the Taliban, 2002-2011’, in Fighting the Afghanistan War: States, Organisations and Military Adaptation, Stanford University Press, 2013


 ‘If only there were leaders: the problem of fixing the Pashtun tribes’, in Magnus Marsden and Benjamin Hopkins (eds.), Beyond Swat, London : Hurst, 2013


‘The local politics of the Taliban’, in Beyond the state – Local politics in Afghanistan, edited by Conrad Schetter, London : Hurst, 2013


[with Claudio Franco and Adam Baczko] ‘Shadow justice: how the Taliban run their judiciary’, Kabul : Integrity Watch Afghanistan, 2013, pp. 56


‘Turmoil within the Taliban: A Crisis of Growth?’, Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University, Central Asia Policy Brief n. 7, January 2013


‘The resilient oligopoly: a political economy of northern Afghanistan 2001 and onwards’, Kabul : AREU, 2012


[with Ashley Jackson] ‘The other side: humanitarian engagement with the Taliban in Afghanistan’, HPG Working Paper, London : ODI, December 2012


[with Niamatullah Ibrahimi] ‘From new dawn to quicksand: The political economy of statebuilding in Afghanistan’, in The Political Economy of Post-conflict Statebuilding: Power after Peace

Edited by Mats Berdal and Dominik Zaum, Routledge, 2012


 ‘Taliban networks in Afghanistan’, Newport : CIWAG, 2012, 84 pp.


‘Justice And State-Building In Afghanistan: State Vs. Society Vs. Taliban’, Occasional paper, Kabul : The Asia Foundation, Reflections on a Survey of the Afghan People, Part 4 of 4, August 2012


‘Auxiliary irregular forces in Afghanistan: 1978-2008’, Chapter in M. Innes (ed.), Making Sense of Proxy Warfare: States, Surrogates, and the Use of Force, Dulles : Potomac Books, 2012.


‘Hearts, Minds, and the Barrel of a Gun: The Taliban’s Shadow Government’, Prism vol. 3 n. 2, March 2012


‘Insurgency in Afghanistan’, in Paul Rich and Isabelle Duyvesteyn (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Insurgency and Counter Insurgency, London : Routledge, 2012


[with Niamatullah Ibrahimi] ‘Thirty years of conflict: Drivers of anti-government mobilisation in Afghanistan, 1978-2011’, Kabul : AREU, January 2012


[with Claudio Franco] ‘The battle for the schools: The Taleban and state education’, Kabul/Berlin : Afghan Analyst Network, 2011


[with Mohammad Isaqzada] ‘Afghanistan's para-military policing in context: The risks of expediency’, Kabul/Berlin : Afghan Analyst Network, 2011


‘Restructuring the defence sector’, in DCAF Afghanistan Working Group, Afghanistan’s security sector governance challenges, Geneva : DCAF, 2011


'Afghanistan: Human Rights and security situation', Oslo : Norwegian Landinfo, 2011


‘Armed Politics and Political Competition in Afghanistan’, in ‘The Peace in Between: Post-War Violence and Peacebuilding’, Ed. By Astri Suhrke and Mats Berdal, London : Routledge, 2011


'Afghanistan: esiste un'exit strategy?', Roma : Cemiss, April 2011, pp. 99


‘L’Afghanistan come il Congo’, in La crisi afghana e il suo contesto regionale, edited by Elisa Giunchi, special issue of Afriche & Orienti, 3-4/2010


[with Christoph Reuter] ‘The Insurgents of the Afghan North’, Kabul/Berlin : Afghan Analyst Network, May 2011


Double-Edged Swords: Armies, Elite Bargaining and State-Building, Working Paper 86 series 2, London : Crisis States Research Centre, February 2011


‘Los grupos étnicos y la movilización política en Afganistán’, Revista de Estudios Sociales, n. 37, December 2010.


[with Noor Ullah] ‘Tribes’ and Warlords in Southern Afghanistan, 1980–2005’, in Alejandro Colás and Bryan Mabee (eds.), Mercenaries, Pirates, Bandits and Empires: Private Violence in Historical Context, London : Hurst, 2010


 ‘Dilemmas of governance in Afghanistan: between patrimonialism and bureaucratisation’, in Afghanistan: beyond the wild tribes, ed. By A. Schlenkhoff and C. Oeppen, London : C. Hurst, September 2010


 [with Francisco Gutierrez] ‘Networks and armies: Structuring rebellion in Colombia and Afghanistan’,

Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, vol. 33 n. 9, pp. 836-53, September 2010


The Taliban beyond the Pashuns, The Afghanistan papers n. 5, Waterloo (Ontario) : CIGI,

July 2010


[with Christoph Reuter], ‘The Northern Front: The Afghan insurgency spreading beyond the

Pashtuns’, Briefing Paper, Kabul : Afghan Analyst Network, June 2010


Negotiating with the Taliban:  issues and prospects, New York : The Century Foundation, June 2010


 ‘Cycles of war and peace in Afghanistan: understanding the political economy of conflict’, Policy Direction brief, London : Crisis States Research Centre LSE, June 2010


‘Vers la retalibanisation de l’Afghanistan?’, Outre Terre n. 24, March 2010, pp. 175-186


Nation-building is not for all: the politics of education in Afghanistan, Thematic report 2/2010, Berlin/Kabul : Afghan Analyst Network, May 2010


 ‘The future of the Afghan National Army: problems and reforms’, in Afghanistan Info, n. 66, March 2010, pp. 8-9


‘Between patronage and rebellion: Student politics in Afghanistan’, briefing paper, Kabul : Afghan Research and Evaluation Unit, 2010


[with Talatbek Masadykov and James Michael Page] ‘Negotiating with the Taliban: toward a solution for the Afghan conflict’, Working Paper 66.2, London : Crisis States Research Centre (LSE), 2010


‘Afghanistan’, in Barry Rubin (ed.), Guide to Islamist Movements, Armonk : ME Sharpe, 2010


 ‘Understanding and fighting the enemy in Afghanistan’, chapter 7 of The Character of War in the Early 21th Century, ed. by Christopher Coker, Rune Henriksen and Caroline Holmqvist, London : Routledge, 2009


 ‘The Afghan National Army: unwarranted hope?’, RUSI Journal, December 2009, pp. 34-40.


‘The eye of the storm: cities in Afghanistan’s civil wars’, London : Crisis  States Research Centre, Working Paper 62.2, 2009


‘Afghanistan: the patrimonial trap and the dream of institution-building’, Chapter in 'Persistent State Weakness in the Global Age', ed. By D. Kostovicova and V. Bojicic-Dzelilovic, Ashgate, 2009


Afghanistan: ‘friction’ between civilizations’, Chapter 3 of The Borders of Islam: Exploring Huntington’s Faultlines, from Al-Andalus to the Virtual Ummah, ed . by Stig Jarle Hansen, Atle Mesøy, Tuncay Kardas, London : Hurst, 2009


 ‘Afghanistan: Getting Worse Before Getting Better?’, Writenet Report commissioned by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Emergency Preparedness and Response Section , August 2009


Book review of Robert D. Crews and Amin Tarzi (eds), The Taliban and the Crisis of

Afghanistan, in Journal of Strategic Studies n. 2, 2009


Book review of A. Sinno, Organizations at war in Afghanistan and beyond, in International Affairs, vol. 85 n. 3, May 2009, p. 655


‘One or many? The issue of the Taliban’s unity and disunity’, Brief N. 48, Bradford : Pakistan Security Research Unit (PSRU), April 2009


[with D. Orsini] ‘Centre-periphery relations in Afghanistan between patrimonialism and institution-building: The Case of Badakhshan’, Central Asian Survey, March 2009, pp. 1-16


‘The pigmy who turned into a giant: the Afghan Taliban in 2009’, LSE IDEAS Strategic Update 1/2009, pp. 9-11


 ‘Shadow Ownership and SSR in Afghanistan', in Local Ownership and Security Sector Reform: DCAF Annual (Geneva), 2008, pp. 215-32


Transition without end: an analytical narrative of Afghanistan, Working paper, London : Crisis States Research Centre, 2008


‘The Neo-Taliban insurgency: from village Islam to international jihad’, chapter in Afghanistan: Transition under Threat, by Geoffrey Hayes and Mark Sedra (eds.), Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2008


‘The SCO: A Regional Organisation In The Making’ (with Anna Matveeva), Working paper 39 series 2, London : Crisis States Research Centre (LSE), September 2008


‘Comment les Talibans regagnent le terrain’, Alternatives Economiques, Juin 2008, pp. 10-5


‘Afghanistan’s National Army: The Ambiguous Prospects of Afghanization’, in Terrorism Monitor (The Jamestown Foundation), Volume VI, Issue 9, 1 May 2008


‘Bureaucratic façade and political realities of disarmament and demobilisation in Afghanistan’, Conflict, Security & Development, n. 2, 2008


 ‘Armed politics and political competition in Afghanistan’, working paper, Bergen : C. Michelsen Institute, 2007,  pp. 24


“Afghanistan: Political Parties or Militia Fronts?” Chapter 8 of  Transforming rebel movements after civil wars, ed. by J. de Zeeuw, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2007


 “Auxiliary force or national army? Afghanistan’s ‘ANA’ and the counter-insurgency effort, 2002-2006”, Small Wars and Insurgencies, Vol. 18, No. 1, 45–67, March 2007


[with N. Ullah] ‘The inverted cycle: Kabul and the strongmen’s competition for control over Kandahar, 2001-2006’, Central Asian Survey n. 2 2007, June 2007


“How the Taleban re-established themselves inside Afghanistan”, in A. Knyazev (ed.), Афганистан и безопасность Центральной Азии, 3rd issue, Moscow, 2007


“War and Peace Economies of Afghanistan’s Strongmen”, International Peacekeeping, Vol.14, No.1, January 2007, pp.75–89


“The missing ingredient: non-ideological insurgency and state collapse in western Afghanistan, 1979-1992”, Working Paper Series 2 n. 11, London, Crisis States Research Centre, LSE, 2007


“À qui est l’Afghanistan?”, Paris : Outre-Terre, n. 16, 2006, pp. 197-213


 “The privatizing of war and security in Afghanistan: future or dead end?”, The Economics of Peace and Security Journal, Vol. 2, No. 1 (2007), pp. 19-23


 “Processes of political ethnicisation in Afghanistan”, Afghanistan Info, September 2006, pp. 9-10


[with N. Ullah] ‘Tribes and warlords in southern Afghanistan’, Working Paper 7 Series 2, London, Crisis States Research Centre, LSE, 2006


‘Genesis of a Prince: The rise of Ismail Khan in western Afghanistan, 1979-1992’, Working Paper 4 Series 2, London, Crisis States Research Centre, LSE, 2006


 “Afghanistan: exploring the peacebuilding potential of the private sector”, in Jessica Banfield, Canan Gündüz and Nick Killick (eds.), Local Business, Local Peace: the Peacebuilding Potential of the Domestic Private Sector, London, International Alert, July 2006


(with Simonetta Rossi) “Disarmament Demobilisation and Reintegration of ex-combatants (DDR) in Afghanistan: constraints and limited capabilities”, Working Paper 2 Series 2, London, Crisis States Research Centre, LSE, 2006


“Afghanistan: elezioni al buio”, Afriche & Orienti (Bologna), n. 4/2005


“The debate on warlordism: the importance of military legitimacy”, Discussion Paper No. 13 of the Crisis States Research Centre, LSE, 2005


“The ethnicisation of an Afghan faction: Junbesh-i Milli from the origins to the Presidential elections (2004)”, Working Paper No. 67 of the Crisis States Research Centre, DESTIN, LSE, 2005


“Afghan demobilisation masks continued militia resistance”, RUSI/Jane’s Homeland Security and Resilience Monitor, May 2005, pp. 17-19


“Conflicting intelligence clouds assessment of Iraqi insurgency”, RUSI/Jane’s Homeland Security and Resilience Monitor, April 2005, pp. 14-16


“Good State vs. Bad Warlords? A Critique of State-building Strategies in Afghanistan”, Working Paper No. 51 of the Crisis States Program, LSE, 2004


“The Demodernisation of an Army: Northern Afghanistan 1992-1998”, Small Wars and Insurgencies vol. 15 n. 1, 2004, pp. 1-18


“Poche sorprese in Afghanistan”, Afriche & Orienti (Bologna) 3-2004, pp. 105-110


(with Mark Sedra), “Securing Afghanistan’s Future: Accomplishments and the Strategic Path Forward, National Army, Technical Annex, World Bank/Goverment of Afghanistan, January 2004


 “Military reform in Afghanistan”, chapter included in M. Sedra (ed.), “Afghanistan: assessing the progress of security sector reforms”, Bonn International Center for Conversion, Bonn, 2003


“Respectable Warlords? The Politics of State-building in Post-Taleban Afghanistan”, Working Paper No. 33 of the Crisis States Program, DESTIN, LSE, 2003


“Afghanistan: the Problem of Creating a New Afghan Army”, International Industrial Information Ltd., Monmouth, 2002


“Pacificare l’Afghanistan: il ruolo delle potenze regionali”, Afriche & Orienti (Bologna) 1-2002, pp. 21-28


“Ethnicity and Politics in Afghanistan: the Role Played by Setam-i Milli”, Afghanistan Info, October 2001, pp. 15-16


“L’Afghanistan ad una svolta”, Afriche & Orienti (Bologna) ¾-2001, pp. 4-8


“Afghanistan il declino dei signori della guerra”, Afriche & Orienti (Bologna) 2-2000, pp. 58-61


"La Resistenza afghana: rivolta tradizionalista e movimenti politici moderni", Rivista di Storia Contemporanea, n. 1, 1991



Papers delivered at conferences and seminars:


Warlord and militia remobilisation in post-2011 Afghanistan: internal and external factors, BICC, Bonn, 27-28 October 2014


Estimating the Size of the Post-2001 Afghan Insurgency in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Durham University, 5 December 2013


Lessons from Afghanistan: For a more realistic approach to security force development, RUSI/ARRC conference, 6 June 2013


‘Local and Tactical Political Accommodation: Evidence from Afghanistan’, Tactical transitions workshop, Oxford, 19 December 2012


‘Diasporas in the Afghan insurgency 2001-2012’, Paper presented at the workshop Crossroads Asia: The Nexus of Conflict and Migration in Afghanistan, Bonn, 24 May 2012


Afghanistan: terrorism as a response to technological inferiority, paper presented at ‘The lessons of Northern Ireland’, 23 May 2011, LSE IDEAS debate.


‘Kant, Hobbes or... Machiavelli? Facing the grim choices of state-building in Afghanistan’, delivered at The Anthony Hyman Memorial Lecture, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 15 March 2011


‘Dealing with informal structures: Afghanistan’, delivered at the ‘Power after peace: the political economy of post-conflict statebuilding - what policy implications?’ conference, Wilton Park, 17 – 19 February 2011


‘ Taliban adaptation in Afghanistan’, delivered at the ‘Organizational Adaptation and the War in Afghanistan’ workshop, 5-7 December 2010, Konstanz University


‘Armies and state-building’, delivered at the  “State-building in Conditions of Fragility”  conference,  London School of Economics, September 13-15 2010


‘At the source of state "dysfunctionality" in Afghanistan’, Paper presented at the conference:

Post-Crisis State Transformation: Rethinking the Foundations of the State, Linköping, 1-5 May 2009


‘Local politics of the Taliban’, paper presented at the ZEF workshop ‘Local politics in Afghanistan, Bonn, February 2009


‘The War in Afghanistan, presentation at the Oxford Strategic Studies Group, Oxford, 11 November 2008


‘The insurgency in Afghanistan’, presentation at the CERI, Paris, 26 May 2008


‘The Taliban’, presentation at the Northwood Army HQ, 21 February 2008


‘Who are the Taliban?’, paper presented at the RUSI workshop, London, January 2008            


‘Bureaucratic façade and political realities of disarmament and demobilisation in Afghanistan’, paper presented at the King’s College London, December 2007


 ‘Transition without end: Afghanistan between patrimonialism and nation-building’, paper presented at the ‘State weakness in the Balkans’ Conference, LSE, Centre for Global Governance, November 2007   

‘Historical perspective on policing Afghanistan’, paper presented on invitation by UNAMA, Kabul, October 2007


 ‘Weighing the options in Afghanistan’, paper presented at The Afghanistan dialogues round table, Vancouver, Simon Fraser University, September 2007


‘Why is it so difficult to build a state in Afghanistan? Some ideas’, on invitation from CHPJ (UNDP), Kabul University,    May 2007        


‘Sources of ant-government opposition in Afghanistan 2001-2006’, BASA annual meeting, Cambridge, March 2007    


 ‘Roots of insurgency in Afghanistan’, paper presented at the Conference "Afghanistan and Regional security: five years after Taliban", Dushanbe, December 2006           


‘Afghanistan towards a new jihad? Interpretations of the southern insurgency’, lecture given at the American Institute of Afghan Studies, Kabul              , October 2006            


“Warlords and opium economy in Afghanistan”, seminar held at the IUED, University of Geneva, 2 May 2006


“Myth and realities of the Afghan jihad: western Afghanistan 1979-1992”, presentation at the School of African and Oriental Studies, London, 27 April 2006


“Warlords into businessmen: the Afghan transition 2002-2005. Preliminary findings from a research trip, May 2005”, Paper presented at the “Transforming War Economies” Seminar, Plymouth, 16-18 June 2005


“Failed intervention in a failed state? The case of Afghanistan”, paper delivered at ‘The Future of Intervention: International Colloquium’, Berlin, 16-18 July 2004


“Factional politics and state re-building in Afghanistan”, Paper delivered at the Crisis States Program Seminar, LSE, 29 January 2004


“Military reform in Afghanistan”, paper delivered at the BICC e-conference entitled “Afghanistan: assessing the progress of security sector reforms”, 4-11 June 2003


“Re-building the Afghan army”, paper delivered at the Symposium on “State Reconstruction and International Engagement in Afghanistan”, Bonn 30 May-1 June 2003


“Respectable warlords? The transition from war of all against all to peaceful competition in Afghanistan”, paper presented at the Crisis States Programme Seminar, LSE, Development Studies Institute, 29 January 2003


“Afghanistan: origini e soluzioni di un conflitto”, paper given at the “Afghanistan: capire i fattori della lunga guerra per ricercare una pace duratura” seminar, Venice, 22 April 2002


"The land reform policy of the PDPA: origin, development and dismissal", paper given at the

Afghanistan Seminar, St. Antony's College, Oxford, 23 November 1999


"PDPA policies and their impact on Afghan identity", paper given at the "Afghanistan:

the crisis of identity" conference, St. Antony's College, Oxford, 15 May 1999.


"The rise and fall of National Reconciliation", paper given at the Seminar on

Afghanistan, LSE, London, 2 July 1997


"Warlordism, the collapse of the Afghan state and regional security", Paper given at

the "Regional Security in a Global Context" conference, 21-25 April 1997, Sussex,


[Private to EIN members]