Afghan society is analyzed from a fresh standpoint in this book which discusses the country?s two and a half centuries of socio-political disquiet and outside interference. The author explores the continuous struggle between the central government and the cornerstone of the present state, the tribes. In its examination of the interchange between the centre and the periphery, the book presents a compelling review of Afghan history, the role of Islam and the contemporary theories of state, Islam, nationalism, ethnicity, and tribalism. In addition, Misdaq considers Afghanistan?s dynamism and long established custom of dealing with foreign invaders. Covering the Soviet occupation, ethnic conflicts and the US invasion, the book examines Afghan resilience and the capacity to raise an army of fighting men. Written by a well-respected authority on the region, the book highlights past mistakes which should not be repeated and recommends the way forward for this troubled nation.