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The Soviet-Afghan War (1979-89)

The Soviet-Afghan War lasted over nine years from December 1979 to February 1989. Insurgent groups (“the Mujahideen”) fought against the Soviet Army and allied Afghan forces. The USSR entered neighboring Afghanistan in 1979, attempting to shore up the newly-established pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. Between 850,000–1.5 million civilians were killed and millions of Afghans fled the country as refugees, mostly to Pakistan and Iran.

Also check: Photos Of Afghanistan Before The Wars

1. Soviet soldiers with bomb sniffing dogs search for IEDs.

Soviet soldiers with bomb sniffing dogs search for IEDs

2. Soviet tank overlooks partially destroyed Afghan village.

Soviet tank overlooks partially destroyed Afghan village

3. Soviet helicopter flies past one of the Buddhas of Bamiyan. They were destroyed by the Taliban in March 2001.

Soviet helicopter flies past one of the Buddhas of Bamiyan. They were destroyed by the Taliban in March 2001

4. Young mujahideens with an anti-aircraft cannon.

Young mujahedin mans an anti-aircraft cannon

5. Afghan rebel carries a US-supplied Stinger anti-air missile up a snowy hill.

Afghan rebel carries a US-supplied Stinger anti-air missile up a snowy hill

6. Afghan rebels pose on top of the wreckage of a Soviet helicopter.

Afghan rebels pose on top of the wreckage of a Soviet helicopter

7. Soviet soldiers pose with spoils of war.

Soviet soldiers pose with spoils of war

8. Soviet soldiers wash themselves in a stream.

Soviet soldiers wash themselves in a stream

9. “Flower”.

Flower

10. Soviet transport plane coming in for landing at Kabul airport on February 8, 1989. Planes were fitted with flares in order to combat the threat of anti-air missile attacks by the Afghan rebels.

Soviet transport plane coming in for landing at Kabul airport

11. Soviet soldier shows off an American Stinger missile, captured from Afghan rebels.

Soviet soldier shows off an American Stinger missile, captured from Afghan rebels

12. Soviet soldiers situated on mountain top operate an AGS-17 automatic grenade launcher.

Soviet soldiers situated on mountain top operate an AGS-17 automatic grenade launcher

13. During the Soviet-Afghan War, Afghan refugees fled the violence, entering Pakistan near Peshawar. May, 1980.

Afghan refugees fleeing the violence

14. A group of Afghan rebels, armed and equipped with motorcycles prepare for action with Soviet and government forces, in the mountainous western region of Afghanistan on January 14, 1980. The guerrillas were able to slip in and out of neighboring Iran, where they re-supplied from Muslims who sympathized with their struggle.

A group of Afghan rebels

15. A deserted Afghan Army commander is now in charge of this group of rebels near Herat, Afghanistan, on February 28, 1980. At the time, it was reported that the Afghan capital of Kabul returned to normal for the first time since bloody anti-Soviet rioting erupted there, killing more than 300 civilians and an unknown number of Soviet and Afghan soldiers.

A deserted Afghan Army commander is now in charge of this group of rebels

16. Soviet soldier escapes heavy fire directed at his armored vehicle, near the town of Herat, on February 13, 1980.

Soviet soldier escapes heavy fire directed at his armored vehicle

17. Two Soviet soldiers captured by Afghan rebels in the Afghan province of Zabul in September of 1981. The prisoners had told journalists then they would be executed by the Afghan resistance for refusing to covert to Islam to make eligible to be tried by an Islamic court.

Two Soviet soldiers captured by Afghan rebels

18. Military parade in Kabul marking the 5th anniversary of the Saur Revolution, in the streets of Kabul on April 27, 1983.

Military parade in Kabul marking the 5th anniversary of the Saur revolution

19. Afghan rebels pose on top of a crashed Soviet Mi-8 transport helicopter, near the Salang Highway, a vital supply route north from Kabul to the Soviet border, January 12, 1981.

Afghan rebels pose on top of a crashed Soviet helicopter

20. Ronald Reagan sits down with Afghan rebel leaders to discuss aid.

Ronald Reagan sits down with Afghan rebel leaders to discuss aid

21. Afghan rebel shows off his American peanut butter MRE, July 11, 1986.

Afghan rebel shows off his American peanut butter MRE

22. Famed Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud surrounded by Mujahideen commanders at a meeting of the rebels in the Panchir Valley in northeast Afghanistan in 1984. Massoud was central to much of the ant-Soviet resistance, and after the troops left, struggled with others to create a new government. In a few years, Massoud and his forces were fighting the Taliban, and he had become an enemy of Osama bin Laden. On September 9, 2001 Massoud was assassinated by two attackers backed by Al Qaeda, just days before the September 11 attacks on the U.S.

Famed Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud

23. Afghan rebel aims down the sights of an FM-92 Stinger MANPADS.

Afghan rebel aims down the sights of an FM-92 Stinger MANPADS

24. Ride through a valley.

Ride through a valley

25. Rebels on the lookout for incoming Soviet soldiers.

Rebels on the lookout for incoming Soviet soldiers. The Soviet-Afghan War

26. A Soviet soldier smokes a cigarette at a checkpoint of the Soviet military airport in Kabul on February 10, 1989 as the other one forbids pictures.

A Soviet soldier smokes a cigarette at a checkpoint of the Soviet military airport in Kabul on February 10, 1989

27. Victim of a deadly rebel bomb attack in downtown Kabul on May 14, 1988. At least eight people were killed and more than 20 injured by the explosion, believed to be planted in a truck on the eve of the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Victim of a deadly rebel bomb attack

28. Afghan rebels sit down for some fruit.

Afghan rebels sit down for some fruit

29. Photo taken during the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Photo taken during the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan

30. “Goodbye Afghan”.

Goodbye Afghan

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Geralt Nowak

There will be something about me. I'm too lazy now.

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