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Dialogue with Taliban fighters has given way to an escalating conflict that has taken dozens of lives and displaced hundreds in Badakhshan province.
Afghan artists have enjoyed relative freedom in recent years. But with foreign troops packing up, can it last?
Once unknown in Afghanistan, the terror tactic has become a common occurrence, prompting questions about the conflict’s nature.
Even before the last troops pull out, parts of Afghanistan have already descended into ethnic violence and civil conflict.
With the West focused on Afghanistan’s countryside and military withdrawal, parts of the capital are slipping into lawlessness.
As temperatures in Kabul drop to well below freezing during the night, the country seems no closer to lasting peace or long-term economic stability.
With foreign troops leaving, a presidential election edging closer and a potential peace deal with the rebels still far from certain, a crucial phase in the struggle for Afghanistan's future is set to unfold.
Former members of the Taliban are desperate for peace. Their lives may depend on it.
The generals were at the heart of planning the US withdrawal, which many Afghans worry will hasten more unrest.
Building a strong civil society is among the greatest US successes since the occupation began. Can it last when the US leaves?
US relations with Afghanistan have deteriorated under Obama.
Not far from the largest US military base in Afghanistan, the Taliban is making major inroads.
With the Taliban insurgency raging across much of Afghanistan, the Northern Alliance says old divisions are threatening to plunge the nation deeper into the mire.
'Our own national elections do not have an impact on Afghanistan, why should an election in America?'
The occupation, they say, has actively encouraged a litany of personal and political ills in an effort to weaken the bedrock of society: Islam.
With time running out and Washington having played its strongest card, optimism in Afghanistan is hard to find.
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar has fought against the occupation of Afghanistan for more than 40 years, first alongside the US against the Soviets, and now against the US itself. Does he hold the best chance for peace.
The US hopes a new democratic era will begin as the occupation ends, but many people worry a power vacuum will emerge instead, leaving political rivals to fight it out as the Taliban closes in on Kabul.
A peaceful Afghanistan appears inextricably linked to a peaceful North Waziristan.
Like it did in Iraq, US relies on local militias to tame the enemy. But this time, it might only make matters worse.