Header Ads

Header ADS

The tragedy and valor of Afghan - 2 -Overthrow of King Zahir Shah

Alexander Antonovich Lyakhovsky

The tragedy and valor of Afgan

Overthrow of King Zahir Shah

During this period, the Parchamists continued to struggle for power in the country. They entered into an alliance with the supporters of M. Daud. Ultimately, on July 17, 1973, General Muhammad Daoud 2 , skillfully using the communist officers (A. Kadyr, A. Vatanjar and S. Gulabzoy), with the help of the leading figures of Parcham, carried out an almost bloodless coup, removing King Zahir Shah from power 3 , abolishing the monarchy and proclaiming himself the president of the republic.

The day after the coup, both factions of the PDPA issued a statement from their Central Committee, which welcomed the overthrow of the monarchy and called on party members to provide support for the republican system.

The Central Committee of the Republic became the political body of the new regime, which included 11 people, 9 of them. were career soldiers. 4 members of the Central Committee were PDPA (3 Parchamists and 1 Khalqist).

For most Afghans, the coup was acceptable and perceived by them as a struggle in the royal family. In this regard, no significant protests against the new regime followed. After taking office as president of the republic, M. Daud immediately promised the leaders of the PDPA that his new government would carry out social reforms and modernization programs and establish closer relations with the Soviet Union. However, M. Daoud was alien to the proposed ways and views of the Parchamists on the reorganization of Afghan society, he strove to be guided by the national interests of his country, so he hastened to get rid of such fellow travelers. Through a series of extremely dexterous maneuvers, he transferred his former allies from Parcham to politically emasculated positions, and by 1976 he was cleared the circle of his close advisers from all (at least known to him) Parchamists. The officers who helped him carry out the coup were left with nothing. Subsequently, it cost M. Daud dearly.

In foreign policy, M. Daud began to pursue a balanced, equidistant course, "gaining points" on the contradictions existing between East and West. In particular, expressing support for the Soviet plan of collective security, at the same time took steps to reduce traditional Soviet-Afghan relations and expand contacts with the United States, Iran, Pakistan, India, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, etc. As one of the high-ranking officials aptly said about it CIA: "Dowd was happiest when he could light his American cigarette with Soviet matches."

For the implementation of large economic projects (construction of a railway, the development of uranium deposits, etc.), large funds were required, but Afghanistan did not have them. Such funds were promised to M. Daud, but in return they demanded the elimination of the left forces. After returning from Saudi Arabia, where he was given a magnificent reception with a visit to all Muslim shrines, M. Daoud led a line to suppress the democratic movement. Prominent party members were monitored, some publishing houses began to be closed, provocateurs began to operate in the ranks of the PDPA.

During this period, the Khalqists launched an active work on recruiting new members. They outnumbered their competitors three times. Their successes in the army were especially important. This work was supervised by X. Amin.

The Parchamists excommunicated from power in August 1975 took serious steps towards unification with the Khalq: representatives of the PDPA factions agreed to end public hostile activities against each other and create more favorable conditions for cooperation. However, things did not go beyond declarations.

Formation of Islamist organizations in Afghanistan

It is a widespread and simplified statement that the insurrectionary movement in Afghanistan emerged after the overthrow of M. Daoud in April 1978. In reality, it appeared much earlier, in the mid-1950s, and approximately at the same time when it was formed. The PDPA as a reaction to the activation of the left-democratic movement, Islamic fundamentalists created their own organizations. They advocated the restoration of the fundamental foundations of Islam, "cleansing it of late accretions and influences," the establishment of a theocratic state in the country.

In the mid-1960s, the Faculty of Theology at Kabul University became one of the main centers of clandestine Islamic political activity. Under the patronage of the dean of this faculty, Professor G. M. Niyazi, an Islamic group is created, the members of which are students and teachers. Around the same period, a similar circle was organized at the engineering faculty of the university, the recognized leaders of which were Gulbeddin Hekmatyar, Seyfuddin Nafatyar and Habib Rahman. On their initiative, the unification of Islamic groups at the university is taking place (in the interests of joint action). In 1969 g.

The organization was headed by the Supreme Council, which included the founders of the organization - G. M. Niyazi, B. Rabbani, M. Tavana, A. R. Sayyaf, G. Hekmatyar. The work of the military section was led by G. Hekmatyar and S. Nafatyar. "Muslim Youth" - the striking force of the Islamic radical organization "Muslim Brotherhood" - from the very beginning of its creation has declared itself as an extremely extremist organization. Its members took any measures to split the democrats, introduce disagreements into their ranks, provoke hostility towards each other.

After General Muhammad Daoud ("The Red Prince") came to power, contradictions arose in the Muslim Youth organization. The youth leadership (in particular, G. Hekma-tiyar) advocated an immediate armed uprising aimed at overthrowing M. Daoud and creating a theocratic state.

In June 1975, supporters of Gulbeddin Hekmatyar, with the help of Pakistani leader Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, launched insurgencies in Panjshir and in several provinces of the country. However, government forces suppressed this demonstration of the Afghan opposition relatively easily. The "Muslim youth" eventually disintegrated. Some of its members were executed, others were imprisoned or fled abroad, mainly to Pakistani territory.

In Pakistan, the fundamentalists gained a certain freedom and began to closely interact with the Pakistani special services, which, in turn, were interested in establishing contacts with them in order to expand their agents in Afghanistan to fight the Daud regime. Moreover, the "lawful king" Zahir Shah was forced to simply leave the country after the coup.

The Zia-ul-Haq administration went on to create a network of bases, training centers for the Afghan opposition on its territory. Fundamentalists began to turn into a simple instrument of the Pakistani intelligence services.

What happened on Saur 7 of 1357 (April 27, 1978)?

In 1976, US Secretary of State Kissinger visited Afghanistan and expressed strong support for Daoud's initiatives. Shah of Iran offered a preferential loan for 2 billion dollars. for a period of ten years and immediately issued $ 400 million. Afghan government. However, despite Daoud's flirtations with the West, the USSR continued to provide its support to Afghanistan, although it expressed concern about the prospects for the development of the situation in the region. At the same time, the CPSU, acting through the KPI and the Pakistani Awami National Party, began to make efforts to unite the PDPA factions as a first step towards the removal of M. Daoud.

In June 1977, after a unification conference held in Jalalabad, the leaders of the Khalq and Parcham signed a "Statement on the Unity of the PDPA," and soon a unification meeting of their central committees took place. Since that time, the unity of the PDPA was formally restored. Hyp Mohammed Taraki again became the general secretary of the party.

At the unification conference, a new composition of the PDPA Central Committee was elected in the amount of 30 people and the Politburo of the Central Committee - 10 people. The Politburo of the PDPA Central Committee included: N.M. Taraki, B. Karmal, G.D. Panjsheri, K. Misak, Shah Wali, Hyp Ahmad Hyp, Barek Shafi, Suleiman Laek, S.A. Keshtmand, S.M. Zerai (5 by 5). There was a heated debate around the personality of X. Amin, whom many people in both factions did not trust. Some of the Khalqists and almost all of the Parchamists categorically objected to his election to the Politburo of the PDPA Central Committee ...

Afghan source, detailed in 1978 (translated from Dari)

During the meeting, H. Amin and S. Hashemi were accused of having links with the CIA while in the United States. Documents were read out about their receipt of funds from this department. However, X. Amin then managed to get out. He stated that he was just playing with the CIA, since he had to finish his studies in the United States, and there was nothing to live on (the transcript of this meeting was kept for a long time in the Central Committee of the CPSU at R.A.Ulyanovsky).

As subsequent events showed, the unification of the party turned out to be incomplete. The military organizations of the factions remained disunited and largely unknown to each other. For the purpose of conspiracy, a system was in effect, brought to narrow limits, when party members knew only their comrades-in-arms in the "three" or "five". Many officers, for example, learned that they belong to the same party, albeit to different factions, only during the creation of unified party organizations in the summer of 1978.

Along with the PDPA, an independent secret organization, the United Front of the Communists of Afghanistan (OFCA), created in the army in 1974 by Colonel A. Kadyr, who played a prominent role in the removal of the king of Afghanistan from power, played a significant role in working with the military. It was ideologically close to the PDPA platform but relied exclusively on a new coup d'état. After the unification of the PDPA, the OFKA leadership established contacts with its leaders, expressing their readiness to join the party. Subsequently, this request was granted (albeit on conditions enslaving for OFKA).

The unification of the PDPA and the strengthening of the left forces have caused alarm in the ruling circles of Afghanistan. After the July 1973 coup, M. Daoud uncovered and suppressed three anti-government plots. True, they were all in August - December 1973, but then the PDPA did not participate in them. Mostly supporters of the king were repressed: the former prime minister, the chief of intelligence, three generals, deputies, and officers.

Every year, representatives of the right-wing groups in the government and the army stepped up pressure on M. Daud, demanding reprisals against democratic forces, primarily the PDPA, as well as the curtailment of Afghan-Soviet relations. By 1978, there were more than 2,000 Soviet technical and economic advisers in Afghanistan. The total amount of Soviet loans reached $ 1,265 million, while American loans and grants were equal to $ 470 million.

PDPA leaders began to prepare a coup with the aim of overthrowing M. Daud. According to the testimony of some party members, it was supposed to take place in August 1978 (the idea of ​​a national strike was hatched by B. Karmal). However, the Khalqists, taking advantage of the favorable situation that arose in Kabul after the murder on April 17 of the leading ideologue of Parcham, MA Khaibar, staged a military coup in April.

At one time Mir Akbar Khaybar was a liberal-minded head of the police academy and was admitted to the party even under the king, on the recommendation of B. Karmal, which irritated the Khalqists. As it was widely believed that Interior Minister Abdul Qadir Nuristani had ordered the murder of M. Khaybar, tens of thousands of Afghans turned his funeral into an anti-government demonstration that was dispersed by law enforcement.

However, there is a version according to which M. Khaibar was killed by S. D. Tarun and the Alemyar brothers by order of H. Amin, since M. Khaibar (from the side of Parcham) had all the threads of leadership in the work of the PDPA in the army, and H. Amin was, as it were, his deputy in this activity. In an effort to seize the leadership, he took steps to eliminate the competitor. Subsequently, one of the brothers Alemyar (Aref) was repressed, and the other held the post of Minister of Planning in the government of H. Amin. Thus, according to this version, it was X. Amin who, by his actions, created the conditions for the overthrow of M. Daud, and if we assume that X. Amin really collaborated with the CIA and acted on his instructions, it becomes obvious who actually was the organizer of the military coup in Afghanistan, and subsequently carried out a strategic operation to draw the Soviet Union into a regional conflict in the Middle East. But this is only a version.

The direct participants in the April 1978 military coup in Afghanistan describe the course of those events in Kabul in different ways. Summarizing these stories, the following picture can be approximately restored.

After the funeral of M. A. Khaybar, repressions against the democratic forces began. According to some information from the Soviet special services, on April 24, in Kabul, at the headquarters of the Central Corps, M. Daoud held a closed meeting with US Ambassador D. Eliot (who was soon to end his activities in Afghanistan). At the meeting, D. Eliot convinced M. Daoud of the need for decisive measures against the left forces and insisted that an order be issued to arrest a number of PDPA leaders, including N.M. Taraki, B. Karmal, H. Amin, G. D Panjsheri, A. V. Safi and others, on charges of violating the constitution. On the night of April 26, by order of M. Daud, they were arrested. For reasons still not clear, Hafizullah Amin first escaped arrest, although the police visited his house on the night of April 25-26 and searched him. X. Amin was only put under house arrest,

To clarify the situation, H. Amin sent his son Abdul Rahman to NM Taraki, but the latter had already been arrested by that time. This served as a signal to X. Amin to issue an order for an armed uprising. Through F.M.Fakir (then an employee of the Kabul Municipality) and S.M. Gulabzoy (then a junior officer of the Afghan Air Force), he passed on the plan of action to his supporters (Khalqists) in the army (H. Amin was transported from home to prison only in the evening April 26, 1978).

On April 26, festivities were held in military units throughout the country to mark the suppression of the communist uprising. Afghan Defense Minister M. Kh. Rasuli ordered to arrange a gala dinner and entertainment events for the servicemen. Taking advantage of this, the Khalqists launched the appropriate preparatory work and carried out measures to prepare for the performance.

On April 27, at 6 a.m., a meeting of the coordination group on the leadership of the military coup was held in the vicinity of the zoo with the participation of Sayd Mohammed Gulabzoy (responsible for the Air Force and Air Defense), Asadulla Payyam (responsible for the 4th tank brigade), Alisha Paymaan (responsible for the anti-aircraft missile brigade), Muhammad Dust (in charge of the 32nd “commando” regiment).

At this meeting, it was decided that by 8 o'clock in the morning everyone was in their units in full readiness to coordinate the actions of units of the Air Force, Air Defense and Ground Forces. The password was “Sayd Mohammed”, the response was “Mig-21”.

Members of the PDPA Mohammed Rafi, the brigade chief of staff, and Mohammed Aslam Vatanjar and Shirjan Mazduryar, battalion commanders, then served in the 4th Tank Brigade (Tbr). At 7 o'clock in the morning, they decided to bring the tanks into combat readiness and hastily push them in the direction of Kabul. M. Rafi remained in the brigade, in place ensuring the suppression of the resistance of individual servicemen who interfered with the implementation of the necessary measures.

The brigade officers managed to carry out the planned plan. First, they fraudulently obtained an order from the brigade commander to issue ammunition for the tanks, and then moved them to the presidential palace ("Arga"). To get ammunition for the tanks of his battalion, Major Aslam Vatanjar went for a trick. At 9 o'clock in the morning, he came to the brigade commander and convinced him that he was one of the most loyal and loyal supporters of M. Daud, and since the capital was restless, he asked the general to allow him to issue 6 war shells for each of the 10 tanks of his battalion ... Say, in which case the battalion will immediately come to the aid of M. Daud.

When permission to issue ammunition was obtained, "correcting the invoice for ammunition" by adding A. Vatanjar eventually received 600 shells in the warehouse. They subsequently fired at the presidential palace.

At about 11 o'clock in the morning, the tanks moved to Kabul (the brigade was located on the eastern outskirts of the city in Puli-Charkhi. - Author's note).

The tank crews were assigned the following tasks: Fateh - to stand on the Pashtunistan Square in order, on the one hand, to fire at Daoud's guard in Kalayi-Dzhangi, and on the other, to control the bank and the post office. A. Vatanjar was supposed to go to the square in front of the building of the Ministry of Defense. S. Mazduryar was instructed to keep under supervision the personal apartments of Muhammad Daoud, his brother Muhammad Naim, the French and Turkish embassies.

The first column of the 4th tank brigade, led by the commander of a tank company, senior captain Umar, appeared in front of the main entrance of the presidential palace at about noon on 27 April. At this time, a meeting of the cabinet of ministers was held in the palace under the chairmanship of M. Daud. The latter was immediately informed of the appearance of tanks. Daoud ordered Defense Minister Rasuli and the chief of the presidential guard, Major Zia, to find out what was going on. When Ziya asked why the tanks had arrived, Umar replied that the brigade commander had sent them to reinforce the security of the presidential palace. Umar was ordered to return to the location of the brigade. However, leaving the position at the main entrance to the palace, he drove the tanks into a side street and waited. Soon other units of the 4th Tank Brigade arrived. The presidential palace was surrounded by tanks. Officers M.A.Vatanjar, S.D.

At exactly 12 noon, Vatanjar ordered the first shot at the presidential palace. Then other tanks opened fire. Fateh from the southern direction, that is, from the Pashtunistan square, and Mazduryar from the western direction opened fire on the guards, at the house of Muhammad Daoud and Muhammad Naim, and went on the attack. MA Vatanjar opened fire on the building of the Ministry of Defense. In the Air Force and Air Defense, in accordance with the plan worked out earlier, the flight crews at the Kabul and Bagram airfields were waiting for departure instructions.

M. Daoud interrupted the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers and told the ministers: "Whoever wants to save his life by leaving the palace is free to do it."

When the skirmish began, Minister of Defense Rasuli and Minister of Internal Affairs Nuristani, passing through the rear gates of the palace, rushed to their ministries, and tried to organize resistance to the rebels. The rest of the ministers took refuge in the Shahi mosque located on the territory of the palace. It must be said that the palace of M. Daud (the former residence of Zahir Shah) was built as a fortress, equipped with the latest anti-tank weapons, and guarded by 2,000 servicemen armed with T-54 tanks. Thus, it was not easy for the rebels to break into the interior of the palace.

The news that tankers were storming the presidential palace quickly spread throughout the city and reached other military towns. Supporters of "Khalq" began to seize weapons and command posts everywhere. By the evening of April 27, the commando units joined the 4th brigade. The actions of some units of the 7th and 8th divisions, the 88th artillery brigade, acting at the direction of the Minister of Defense Rasuli, were neutralized.

Fierce fighting broke out in different parts of the city and its environment. On the Hajj-Ravash road, where the headquarters of the Air Force and Air Defense was located, a difficult situation developed, but the tankers who arrived there quickly took the initiative into their own hands.

The air force played an important role. With the help of pilots loyal to the party, an operation was carried out to seize the airfield in Bagram. Warplanes soon took off.

At 17.30, Senior Lieutenant Mustafa released the arrested PDPA leaders who were in the municipal building. The national melody "Raga Malhar", which is traditionally performed during the change of government, was broadcast on the radio. Then they announced the victory of the revolution. Immediately after this, the planes of the Afghan Air Force struck the presidential palace, where M. Daud continued to resist the rebels with his relatives and his loyal guards. Repeated proposals to cease fire and surrender remained unanswered, and the defenders of the palace continued to resist.

In the evening, a group of "commandos" broke into M. Daud's apartment and demanded that he surrender his weapons. To the president's question: "Who made the revolution?" - Senior Lieutenant Imammuddin, who led the actions of this group, replied: "PDPA is leading the revolution." Daoud shot Imammuddin with a revolver and wounded him. In the ensuing skirmish, M. Daud and all members of his family were killed.

By the morning of April 28, by the joint efforts of tankmen, pilots and commandos, the resistance of the guards who defended the presidential palace was suppressed and power passed to the PDPA.

The losses among the military personnel amounted to 43 people. There were also casualties among the civilian population.

But there is a version, which is adhered to by the Doctor of Philosophy, Major General of the Reserve Kim Makedonovich Tsagolov: “I would like to express one hypothesis, which can only be proved by a very serious and subtle analysis. The fact is that I am not a supporter of the idea of ​​the leading role of the PDPA in the events of April 1978. Numerous personal conversations with the most significant figures of the Afghan political life of the last 10-15 years led me to believe that the secret political organization United Front played the leading role in these events. Communists of Afghanistan (OFKA), led by Abdul Kadyr, who was ousted from the post of Commander-in-Chief of the Air Force after the 1973 antimonarchist coup. This organization was estimated to have 600 members and about 2,000 sympathizers. Without denying the importance of the work in the army of representatives of the "Khalq" faction, as well as "Parcham", I am still inclined to argue that the OFCA played a major role in the radicalization of the Afghan army. First of all, the head of the OFKA A. Kadyr, who played a key role in the anti-monarchist coup in 1973, and then removed from his post by M. Daud, was a very popular personality in the army. His personal courage, high flying skills and significant connections among the officers contributed to the popularity of the OFKA.

I do not think that there were close contacts between A. Kadyr and the PDPA factions that worked in the army. This, obviously, was hampered by the nationality of A. Kadyr (he is from the Charaymaks), who reacted painfully to the Pashtun dominance not only in the army, but also in "Khalq", and a certain suspicion of "Parcham", who found a "common language" with M. Daud immediately after the coup in 1973. If we add to this such personal qualities of A. Kadyr as hot temper, straightforwardness, stubbornness, it becomes clear that he was a very inconvenient figure for contacts with representatives of "Khalq" and "Parcham".

In addition, the most prominent leaders of the PDPA were in prison at the beginning of the events. It is no coincidence that at the time of the overthrow of the regime of M. Daud, the Military Revolutionary Council was headed by A. Kadyr, who, together with A. Vatanjar, addressed the people by radio. Later, the council transferred the entirety of the central government to the leaders of the PDPA, who were released from prison by the insurgent military. I must note that A. Kadyr, in his conversation with me (I know this figure well), called this step erroneous, because, in his opinion, the PDPA, torn apart by factional strife, was not ready to fulfill this historic mission. I think that in the light of all subsequent developments, A. Kadyr was not far from the truth. "

The opinion of K.M. Tsagolov provokes the categorical disagreement of the party members of the PDPA of both factions. As a summary, it can be stated that the coup was carried out by practically the same people who brought M. Daud to power; it took place with small losses and destruction. During the storming of the palace, M. Daud was killed. The text of the appeal to the people about the victory of the Saur revolution in Afghanistan was read out on the radio: A. Kadyr - in Dari, MA Vatanjar - in Pashto. In particular, it said: "For the first time in the history of Afghanistan, the last remnants of imperialist tyranny have been destroyed and despotism has ended ..."

The people of Kabul and the provincial centers took the PDPA's rise to power calmly, but this was more a reaction to the elimination of M. Daud than support of the PDPA. After all, every person and every nation, especially the disadvantaged, always lives with the hope for a better future. PDPA after the coup promised to build a fair, free society. However, populist slogans remained an empty declaration, and the fate of the reformers themselves turned out to be tragic. Why did this happen?


The dictatorship of the proletariat or the dictatorship of the party?

No comments

Powered by Blogger.