The Two Way Street

Politics for a New Generation

How Russia is Responsible for Al Qaeda, The Taliban, and Every Other Problem in the Middle East


In 2002, the United States invaded Afghanistan in pursuit of Al Qaeda and the Taliban, the radical, newly installed regime that toppled the Northern Alliance the day before 9/11. In December of 1979, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, toppling a long-standing, stable monarchy. In the January of the following year, the united states led by senator Charlie Wilson and CIA operatives began supplying the Mujahadeen, or Freedom Fighters with missiles, and then training. Soon, the U.S. was training freedom fighters from all over the Muslim war to combat the Communist Russians. Once the soviet Union finally left Afghanistan, the Afghani Mujahadeen began to morph into a new group, a group that wore black paint around their eyes, grew long beards, and kept their women in burqas. They called themselves the students of Islam, or the Taliban. Many of the out of state mujahadeen, formed another group, Al Qaeda, meaning, The Base. At first Al Qaeda was not pitted against the US, focusing their energy on local governments, but then, in 1995, in the midst of a battle with the Soviets for Saudi oil, Osama Bin Ladin, the group’s leader, was kicked out of Saudi Arabia under pressure from the United States, Upon which Bin Ladin declared war on the US.

There are other connections to other conflicts as well, such as the willingness of the former soviet state to sell arms to the highest bidder, allowing for groups such as Hammas to assemble an arsenal. Old soviet weaponry is all over the middle east in the hands of both governments and extremist groups, some of it sold, others discarded during the soviet occupation of Afghanistan. The first Gulf War was initiated, partially, because George Bush Senior knew that Republicans made popular wartime presidents, and felt that a war would assist his re-election. The conflicts in Iran, as mentioned in a previous article, have increased severity because, first, Russia is supplying Iran with many of its weapons, and supplies for nuclear bombs, mostly because of Russian dependence on Iranian oil. On top of that, not only is Russia supplying Iran, they would also back them up in the case of war with the United States. There are two things to be learned from this history lesson. First, oil is political currency, and second: Russia caused the troubles in the middle east. The collapse of an empire will inevitably end in conflict for the land within, as exemplified in the end of World War I into II and II into the cold war. In the modern world of America, New enemies and demons will inevitably spring from the carcasses of the old, and, unless we change, to borrow the world of Martin Luther King jr, “hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction.”


Author: Julia

I'm a seventeen-year-old college student at Simon's Rock of Bard in Western Mass. I'm a writer and an aspiring journalist.

4 thoughts on “How Russia is Responsible for Al Qaeda, The Taliban, and Every Other Problem in the Middle East

  1. the article is subjective, however I will admit that much of the conflict with Al Qaieda is our own stubborn fault, considering our butt-kissing with the saud family. and modern russia is a fabulous state, but, however overblown the “red scare” was (which it certainly was!) the soviet union;s conwuests were certainly not a good thing in history. I may have been a little harsh. but I ask that next time you refrain from swearing, as I now have to put stars in it to keep my site family friendly, as I try to make it. thanks for the feedback. I appreciate that you actually read the site, and condone your differing opinion. (despite the fact that some of the more technical factoids would certainly not work with the united states. thank you for sharing your opinion! I hope you continue the discussion!

  2. Yuliya,

    If you replace ‘Russia’ with ‘The United States’ this article is completely accurate.



    PS Grow the h*ll up.

  3. please elaborate!!!

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