Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a country located in South and Central Asia. It is the 42nd most populous county with a population of 32 million. It covers an area of 252,000 square miles and it is ranked the 41st largest country. The Republic consists of three branches, the judicial, executive, and the legislature. The nation is led by a president and has two vice presidents and a bicameral with two chambers. It has 34 provinces each with its capital and provincial administration. It is considered a least developed country with a GDP of $60.58 billion and a per capita income of $1,900. Afghanistan had its first president in 1973 when Daoud Khan overthrew King Zanir Shah in a bloodless coup.
Sardar Mohammed Daoud Khan
Sardar Mohammed Daoud Khan, better known as Daoud Khan, was a Prime Minister of Afghanistan who became its first President after he overthrew King Zanir Shah in a bloodless coup in 1973. At an early age, Khan lost his father who was an Afghan ambassador in an assassination in Germany. He was educated in France where and was an apt student of political science. He served as the governor of Eastern Province in Afghanistan from 1935-1935 and served the second term from 1938-1939. He served as a lieutenant general from 1939 to 1946 after which he was appointed the defense minister in 1946. He later served as the Afghan ambassador to France and later as a commander of the Afghan military. He was named the Prime Minister where he was noted for completing the Helmand Valley project that improved the living conditions of the Afghan people. After many years of engaging in conflict with Pakistan, Khan seized power from his brother-in-law, King Zanir. In contrast to his predecessors, Khan desired an Afghanistan that was less dependent on the Soviet Union, he invested in building a relation with the United States and the West. On April 27, 1978, the Afghan Army began a coup. It is believed that the Soviet Union and Pakistan played part in the coup that later resulted in the assassination of the President and his family.
Hamid Karzai served as the president of Afghanistan from December 7, 2004 until September 26, 2014. He rose from a politically active family, a majority of his family members served in political positions in the Afghan national and regional government. He was an active member of the Mujahideen that fought the Russian from 1979 until 1989. After the withdrawal of the Soviets, the Mujahideen established the Islamic State of Afghanistan. His father was assassinated, and he rose to a political position in 1999. He played a major political role when the US invaded Afghanistan and overthrew the Taliban regime. A grand assembly was held is Kabul where he was chosen as an interim president for two terms. During his term the Afghanistan, economy depended on international aid as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) pounded the country with bombs in search of the Taliban leaders who they believed hosted Bin Laden. He demanded that NATO should avoid civilian casualties during their operations. He was reelected for the second term in 2009 receiving more than 50% of the votes. He is remembered as the Afghan president who has a strong relation with NATO the US in particular. He mended the relationship with Pakistan and advocated for the removal of the Taliban insurgency from Afghanistan. For the decade he was power, Karzai survived multiple assassination attempts.
|Heads of State of Modern Afghanistan||Term(s) in Office|
|Mohammed Daoud Khan||1973-1978|
|Nur Muhammad Taraki||1978-1979|
|Haji Mohammad Chamkani||1986-1987|
|Abdul Rahim Hatif||1992|
|Mohammed Omar (Proclaimed by Taliban as Emir of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan; Not internationally recognized)||1996-2001|