On Afghanistan’s Plains : The Story of Britain’s Afghan Wars
by Jules Stewart
Editor: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
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Britain’s military involvement in Afghanistan is a controversial subject, but it is often forgotten that the current conflict is not in fact the fourth of a series of such wars dating back to the early 19th century.Aiming to protect the British territories in India from the expanding Russian Empire, the British fought a series of conflicts on Afghan territory between 1838 and 1919.The Anglo-Afghan war of the 19th and early 20th century was poorly designed and led to some of the worst military disasters ever suffered by British forces in that part of the world, with a poor strategy during the first Afghan war resulting in the annihilation of 16,000 soldiers and civilians in a single week.In his new book, Jules Stewart explores the potential danger of re-reading Britain’s military disasters and considers what can be learned from revisiting the history of these earlier Afghan wars.
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