Think tank whose specific goal is to study Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia
Report Content:The Taliban now holds a permanent presence in 72% of Afghanistan, up from 54% a year ago. Taliban forces have advanced from their southern heartlands, where they are now the de facto governing power in a number of towns and villages, to Afghanistan’s western and north-western provinces, as well as provinces north of Kabul. Within a year, the Taliban's permanent presence in the country has increased by a startling 18%.
Three out of the four main highways into Kabul are now compromised by Taliban activity. The capital city has plummeted to minimum levels of control, with the Taliban and other criminal elements infiltrating the city at will.
Through its research platform in Afghanistan, ICOS determined the Taliban’s presence across the country using a combination of publicly recorded attacks and local perceptions of Taliban presence. One or more insurgent attacks per week in a province constitutes a “permanent Taliban presence” according to ICOS (see full methodology).
1. The Taliban are back: Situation update December 2008
2. Advance of the Taliban: maps
3. Full Methodology for the Afghanistan and Kabul Maps
4. Taliban Tactics: The Secret of Their Success
5. Inverting the Pyramid: New Architecture Counter Insurgency Theory