Justifying jihad: US politics, propaganda and the Afghan mujahedeen

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dc.contributor.advisor Ryan, David en
dc.contributor.author Fitzgibbon, Jacqueline
dc.date.accessioned 2015-12-14T15:38:38Z
dc.date.issued 2015
dc.date.submitted 2015
dc.identifier.citation Fitzgibbon, J. 2015. Justifying jihad: US politics, propaganda and the Afghan mujahedeen. PhD Thesis, University College Cork. en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10468/2141
dc.description.abstract Hard-line anti-communists in the United States recognised the potential for the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 to embroil their super-power rival in a ‘Vietnam-like quagmire.’ Their covert operation to arm the mujahedeen is well documented. This dissertation argues that propaganda and public diplomacy were powerful and essential instruments of this campaign. It examines the protagonists of this strategy, their policies, initiatives and programmes offering a comprehensive analysis heretofore absent. It stretches from the dying days of the Carter administration when Zbigniew Brzezinski saw the ‘opportunity’ presented by the invasion to the Soviet’s withdrawal in 1989. The aim of these information strategies was to damage Soviet credibility and enhance that of the US, considered under threat from growing ‘moral equivalence’ amongst international publics. The conflict could help the US regain strategic advantage in South Asia undermined by the ‘loss’ of Iran. The Reagan administration used it to justify the projection of US military might that it believed was eviscerated under Carter and emasculated by the lingering legacy of Vietnam. The research engages with source material from the Reagan Presidential Library, the United States Information Agency archives and the Library of Congress as well as a number of online archives. The material is multi-archival and multi-media including documentaries, booklets, press conferences, summit programmes and news-clips as well as national security policy documents and contemporaneous media commentary. It concludes that propaganda and public diplomacy were integral to the Reagan administration and other mujahedeen supporters’ determination to challenge the USSR. It finds that the conflict was used to justify military rearmament, further strategic aims and reassert US power. These Cold War machinations had a considerable impact on the course of the conflict and undermined efforts at resolution and reconciliation with profound implications for the future stability of Afghanistan and the world. en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher University College Cork en
dc.rights © 2015. Jacqueline Fitzgibbon en
dc.rights.uri http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ en
dc.subject US foreign policy en
dc.subject Afghanistan en
dc.subject Reagan en
dc.subject Soviet invasion en
dc.subject 1980s en
dc.subject Carter en
dc.subject Cold War en
dc.subject Propaganda en
dc.subject Neo-conservative en
dc.subject Public diplomacy en
dc.title Justifying jihad: US politics, propaganda and the Afghan mujahedeen en
dc.type Doctoral thesis en
dc.type.qualificationlevel Doctoral en
dc.type.qualificationname PhD (Arts) en
dc.internal.availability Full text not available en
dc.check.info Indefinite en
dc.check.date 10000-01-01
dc.description.version Accepted Version
dc.contributor.funder Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences en
dc.description.status Not peer reviewed en
dc.internal.school History en
dc.check.reason This thesis is due for publication or the author is actively seeking to publish this material en
dc.check.opt-out Yes en
dc.thesis.opt-out true
dc.check.entireThesis Entire Thesis Restricted
dc.check.embargoformat Both hard copy thesis and e-thesis en
dc.internal.conferring Autumn Conferring 2015


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© 2015. Jacqueline Fitzgibbon Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2015. Jacqueline Fitzgibbon
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