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Enduring Freedom? The 20-year mission in Afghanistan


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Age suitable for: 16+

Date and Time (UK time):
13/11/2021 18:00-19:30
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  • Potentially upsetting content

Thursday 7 October 2021 marked the twenty-year anniversary of the start of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan - the NATO operation endorsed by the UN Security Council following the 9/11 attacks.

The mission, which initially saw the United States lead a coalition of forces to remove al-Qaeda's safe haven and overthrow their Taliban hosts, expanded into a two-decade nation building effort, the failure of which was laid bare by last month's chaotic withdrawal of all NATO forces, the return of the Taliban to power, and the presence of not one, but two competing terrorist organisations in the form of al-Qaeda and the regional ISIS-affiliate, IS-K.

To mark this anniversary, scholars from the University of Southampton's History department hosted an online event to explore the operation from four perspectives:
- "As known in history as the graveyard of empires": Was the failure of Enduring Freedom's nation building effort inevitable? - Dr Chris Fuller
- Cherie and Laura Lift the Veil: the women and girls of Afghanistan and the language of the War on Terror - Dr Charlotte Riley
- "Never out of the fight." Hollywood's representation of American foreign policy in Afghanistan - Olivia Flint, PhD candidate
- Decent and indecent intervals: comparing the fall of Saigon and the fall of Kabul - Professor Kendrick Oliver

You can now watch the recording of the event that will premiere on YouTube on Saturday 13th.

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