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   Hafizullah Amin
By Afghanland.com:

Hafizullah Amin
born August 1, 1929, Paghman, Afghanistan
died December 27, 1979, Kabul


Hafizullah Amin was the second President of Afghanistan during the period of the communist Democratic Republic of Afghanistan.

Born in Kabul, Afghanistan. He gained a BSc in Mathematics and Physics from the University of Kabul before leaving for Columbia University in New York where he received his Masters degree in 1957 (Pädagogik). Amin returned to Afghanistan in 1965 before completing his Ph.D to join the People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), he became a prominent member of the Marxist Khalq (People) faction.

The Soviet government and press repeatedly referred to Amin as a "CIA agent", a charge which was greeted with great skepticism in the United States and elsewhere. However, enough circumstantial evidence supporting the charge exists so that it perhaps should not be dismissed entirely out of hand.

During the late 1950s and early '60s, Amin had attended Columbia University Teachers College and the University of Wisconsin . This was a heyday period for the CIA-using impressive bribes and threats-to regularly try to recruit foreign students in the United States to act as agents for them when they returned home. During this period, at least one president of the Afghanistan Students Association (ASA), Zia H. Noorzay, was working with the CIA in the United States and later became president of the Afghanistan state treasury. One of the Afghan students whom Noorzay and the CIA tried in vain to recruit, Abdul Latif Hotaki, declared in 1967 that a good number of the key officials in the Afghanistan government who studied in the United States "are either CIA trained or indoctrinated. Some are cabinet level people." It has been reported that in 1963 Amin became head of the ASA, but this has not been corroborated. However, it is known that the ASA received part of its funding from the Asia Foundation, the CIA's principal front in Asia for many years, and that at one time Amin was associated with this organization.

In September 1979, the month that Amin took power, the American charge d'affaires in Kabul, Bruce Amstutz, began to hold friendly meetings with him to reassure him that he need not worry about his unhappy Soviet allies as long as the US maintained a strong presence in Afghanistan. The strategy may have worked, for later in the month, Amin made a special appeal to Amstutz for improved relations with the United States. Two days later in New York, the Afghan Foreign Minister quietly expressed the same sentiments to State Department officials. And at the end of October, the US Embassy in Kabul reported that Amin was "painfully aware of the exiled leadership the Soviets [were] keeping on the shelf" (a reference to Karmal who was living in Czechoslovakia). Under normal circumstances, the Amin-US meetings might be regarded as routine and innocent diplomatic contact, but these were hardly normal circumstances-the Afghan government was engaged in a civil war, and the United States was supporting the other side.

After the death of
Mohammed Daoud Khan in 1978 the PDPA gained power with Noor Mohammad Taraki becoming President of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan and secretary general of the PDPA while Amin and Babrak Karmal became deputy prime ministers. An attempt to institute Marxist-Leninist reforms provoked widespread resistance and a number of violent revolts, in February 1979 the U.S. Ambassador Adolph Dubs was killed. the Khalq faction was gaining political power over the Parcham faction, with Karmal exiled to Europe Amin had gained considerable control by March 1979 and was named prime minister although Taraki retained his other posts. The unrest continued however and the regime was forced to seek more Soviet aid. On September 14, 1979 Taraki was killed in a confrontation between Taraki and Amin supporters and Amin then became the second President of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan.

Amin worked to broaden his base of support and purged the PDPA of his perceived enemies. His regime was still under pressure from the insurgency in the country and he tried to gain Pakistani or American support and refused to take Soviet advice. This display of independent nationalism meant that when in December 1979, the Soviets began their invasion of Afghanistan, Amin and many of his followers were killed on December 27. Babrak Karmal became the next President.

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