Book Talk - The Comrades and the Mullahs: China, Afghanistan and the New Asian Geopolitics
April 12, 2022
5:30 PM—6:30 PM IST (UTC+05:30)
The United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan has far reaching consequences for Afghanistan’s future and the broader geopolitics of the region. China, with its growing clout in Afghanistan, could play a dominant role in its future. However, questions over Beijing’s regional ambitions and its appetite to fill the void left by the United States remain.
In their new book, 'The Comrades and the Mullahs: China, Afghanistan and the New Asian Geopolitics', Ananth Krishnan and Stanly Johny trace China’s emergence as a key player in Afghanistan. Drawing on their travels to China’s western frontiers as well as the internal dynamics pushing Beijing’s westward march, they examine China’s interests in Afghanistan and the drivers of its foreign policy towards the country.
On April 12 we hosted Ananth Krishnan, Stanly Johny, Aziz Amin, and Jennifer B. Murtazashvili for a conversation on China’s role in Afghanistan and its impact on Asian geopolitics in an India and the World webinar. The discussion was moderated by Deep Pal.
Ananth Krishnan is the China correspondent for the Hindu and is currently based in Hong Kong. In 2019, he was a visiting fellow at Brookings India. He was previously the Beijing-based associate editor at the India Today Group. He has reported from China for close to a decade and his reporting has taken him to all but three of China's thirty-three provinces and regions. He is the author of India’s China Challenge (2020).
Stanly Johny is the international affairs editor with the Hindu. A PhD in international studies from the Centre for West Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, he has been writing on international affairs and Indian foreign policy in Hindu Group publications for nearly a decade. An IVLP fellow of the U.S. State Department and an India–Australia Youth Dialogue alumnus, he has also contributed to think-tanks such as the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C., and the Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses in New Delhi. He is the author of The ISIS Caliphate: From Syria to the Doorsteps of India (2018).
Aziz Amin is a governance professional with cross-disciplinary experience in policy analysis, security, and socio-political participation in conflict and post-conflict settings in Afghanistan and the South Asian region. He served as the principal secretary and special assistant for the former president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan until the collapse of Kabul in August. He writes about socio-political and security issues in South Asia and the Middle East. He has participated in complex debates for broader public audiences and his articles and opinions have been published in prestigious media outlets.
Deep Pal is a visiting scholar in the Asia program at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
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