By Stephen Tanner
Following the occasions of September eleven, 2001, the area was once riveted as American army strength contested the mythical warrior tradition of Afghanistan. via spring 2002, the United States started to draw down its forces, its project entire: The Afghan Taliban regime has been overthrown and the terrorists it harbored have been at the run. used to be America's effortless victory evidence of its army superiority, or have been the Afghans in simple terms eyeing the beginners as they've got watched international armies in centuries earlier, figuring out time is on their side?For over 2,500 years, the forbidding territory of Afghanistan has served as a necessary crossroads--not only for armies yet for clashes among civilizations--the Greeks, Arabs, Mongols, and Tartars, and in additional contemporary occasions, Britain and Russia. Now the United States needs to face a brand new enemy in this land--a land that for hundreds of years has turn into a graveyard of empires past.This first-ever entire army background of Afghanistan illuminates the wide historic context into which American forces were drawn--a cautionary story, probably, concerning the hazards which may lie forward.
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Extra resources for Afghanistan: A Military History From Alexander The Great To The Fall Of The Taliban
In the center, the elite Macedonian infantry phalanx made no headway against Darius's Greeks. They floundered in the river, their ranks ragged, while the Greek hoplite infantry easily held its position. Near the shore, Persian cavalry charged across the river and began pushing in Parmenio's troops who had little room to maneuver since Parmenio had been ordered to keep his flank against the sea. The only Macedonian success had been achieved by Alexander on the right, and after the Persian troops on that side were in flight, he 22 AFGHANISTAN turned his cavalry against the Greeks in the center.
The army had been cutting trees to pile up against the steep cliffs, and during that hot August a strong west wind had dried them into tinder. The ancient sources differ on whether the trees accidentally caught fire or Alexander purposely had them piled up and ignited, but the result was that the entire mountaintop was swept by flames and the defenders perished. Reading between the lines, there is occasion to wonder whether the Areians indeed died en masse in the fire or whether Alexander simply "declared victory" and hastened on his way.
Ducking beneath the missiles, shield held overhead, he reached the line of archers which immediately collapsed in terror. The rest of the Persians on the left were unable to stand against Alexander's cavalry and his following infantry. The Persian left collapsed. In the center, the elite Macedonian infantry phalanx made no headway against Darius's Greeks. They floundered in the river, their ranks ragged, while the Greek hoplite infantry easily held its position. Near the shore, Persian cavalry charged across the river and began pushing in Parmenio's troops who had little room to maneuver since Parmenio had been ordered to keep his flank against the sea.