• Warlords into businessmen: the Afghan transition 2002-2005. Preliminary findings from a research trip, May 2005.

      Giustozzi, A. (University of Bradford, 2005)
      The Afghan conflict changed significantly after the Soviet withdrawal and especially after the collapse of the communist regime in April 1992. External support, which at some point had been running to the tune of $3 billion a year to all sides, rapidly faded and the military commanders increasingly faced the problem of how to fund their armies in the face of a declining propensity of the civilian population to contribute to the war effort. The hold of the parties based in Pakistan and Iran over the field commanders rapidly weakened, even if some of the political leaders had been forward looking enough to accumulate financial resources through the hoarding of military supplies, which were then sold on the black market. The partial financial autonomy of some political leaders of the jihadi movement was not enough to stem the tide towards weaker and weaker links between parties and commanders, not least because the parties were reluctant to spend whatever resources they had accumulated, lest they lose their leverage in the future.