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13 Beijing L. Rev. 414 (2022)
Sub-Nationalism and Nationalism: The Dilemma of Power and Ethnicity in Afghanistan

handle is hein.journals/beijlar13 and id is 424 raw text is: Beijing Law Review, 2022, 13, 414-428
ISSN Online: 2159-4635
ISSN Print: 2159-4627

Sub-Nationalism and Nationalism: The
Dilemma of Power and Ethnicity in Afghanistan
Osman Mohammed Afzal
Faculty of Public Governance, Budapest National University of Public Service, Budapest, Hungary
Email: afzalosmani9@gmail.com

How to cite this paper: Afzal, O. M. (2022).
Sub-Nationalism and Nationalism: The Di-
lemma of Power and Ethnicity in Afgha-
nistan. BeijinglawReview, 13, 414-428.
https:Ildoior/lO.43 Lbjr.2022. 132026
Received: February 4, 2022
Accepted: June 27, 2022
Published: June 30, 2022
Copyright © 2022 by author(s) and
Scientific Research Publishing Inc.
This work is licensed under the Creative
Commons Attribution International
License (CC BY 4.0).
h      eavecommonsog licensesb  4.0

Afghanistan is a multinational country with a weak nationalism. The fragility
of nationalism and nations often has been due to races, religion, and stereo-
types; however, in Afghanistan, the centralization of power has created fragil-
ity and significant rifts among ethnicities which the outcome is sub-nationalism.
Sub-nationalism could be harmless in a decentralized political system, how-
ever, not definitely in a centralized political system. Throughout history, the
centrality of authority strengthened ethnic cleavages, rivalries of ethnics over-
power, single-ethnic hegemony, weak governance, and significantly disrupted
the unity of ethnics. The big hurdle of Afghanistan for being a nation-state has
been the centralization of power. Most authors and pamphlets advise concen-
tration of power versus decentralized system in the country to preserve the un-
ity of ethnicities. At the same time, Afghanistan experienced that such a sys-
tem did not trigger unity of the nationalities.
Nationalism, Sub-Nationalism, Decentralization of Power, Ethnicity

. Introduction
Afghanistan is a multinational country that, by its current boundaries specified
in the 19th century in the reign of Amir Abdul Rahman Khan 1880-1901 (Rahi-
mi. The country comprises Tajiks, Pashtuns, Hazaras, Uzbeks, and minor eth-
nicities, such as Baloch, Kirgiz, Kazakh, Sadat, Arab, Gojar, Pashai, Turkmen,
and Tatar (Kayser, 2012). All these ethnicities have different cultures, languages,
and historical values; thereby, it is essential to form a structure to preserve these
values and bring stability and unity in the pivot of it. Therefore, the question
that always came up is how to make a nationalism that encompasses all ethnici-
ties' values? Furthermore, what nurtured the roots of sub-nationalism in the

DOI: 10.4236/bir.2022.132026 Jun. 30, 2022



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