Afghanistan

Beattie, Hugh (2016). Afghanistan. In: Daniel, Ute; Gatrell, Peter; Janz, Oliver; Jones, Heather; Keene, Jennifer; Kramer, Alan and Nasson, Bill eds. 1914-1918-online. International Encyclopedia of the First World War. Berlin: Freie Universität Berlin.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15463/ie1418.10957

Abstract

Since 1905 Britain had paid the Afghan ruler, Amir Habibullah, a subsidy and had controlled Afghanistan's foreign relations, and he maintained Afghanistan's neutrality throughout WWI in spite of strong pressure to induce him to join the Central Powers. The war did not have much of an impact on most Afghans (although there were shortages of some commodities), but many died in the global influenza outbreak which began in 1918. When the war ended Britain failed to reward the Amir for his refusal to take advantage of British weakness during it, and he was assassinated early in 1919. His successor, Amir Amanullah, launched the third Anglo-Afghan War, following which the country became fully independent, but Amanullah's hasty modernization was to lead to his overthrow in 1929.

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