Professor Ali Ahmad Jalali, serves as a Distinguished Professor at the Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies (NESA) at the National Defense University in Washington D.C. since October 2005. He is a former Interior Minister of Afghanistan (Jan. 2003-Sept. 2005) and Afghanistan Ambassador to Germany (Dec 2016-Sep 2018)
As Interior Minister of post-Taliban Afghanistan, he created a trained force of 50,000 Afghan National Police (ANP) and 12,000 Border Police to work effectively in counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism, and criminal investigation to fight against organized crime and illegal border crossings. He successfully led the country-wide operations to protect the constitutional grand assembly (Loya Jirga) in 2003, the nationwide voters’ registration drive and landmark 2004 Presidential election, and the parliamentary elections in 2005.
As Afghanistan Ambassador to Germany, Jalali interacted with Germany and European Union on major bilateral and multi-lateral issues related to policy, regional security, economy, trade, education as well as immigrants and refugees matters.
Since 2008, Jalali is also actively participating in high-level Track-II meetings on major multi-lateral global issues involving the United States, South and Central Asia, Russia, and China.
Prior to assuming the ministerial post in Kabul, Ambassador Jalali served in executive broadcast positions at Voice of America in Washington, D.C. from 1982 to 2003. During this period he, directed broadcasts in Pashto, Dari and Farsi (Persian) languages to Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asia. As journalist, he covered the war in Afghanistan (1982-1993) and the former Soviet Central Asia (1993-2000) and traveled extensively across the region.
During his military service in Afghanistan army (1961-81), Jalali served in command, staff and educational posts with a final rank of colonel. He attended higher educational institutions in Afghanistan, United States, United Kingdom and Russia. (See the list below)
A reputed multi-lingual military and political analyst, Ambassador Jalali has extensive academic, managerial, journalistic and writing experience and has published in three languages (English, Pashto, and Dari/Farsi). He is the author of numerous books and articles on political, military and security issues in Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asia. His works are published in the United States, Britain, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. (See the list below). He is a frequent commentator on Afghan and regional security and international political developmental at U.S. major TV networks (including CNN, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, FOX News, PBS, NPR) as well as Australian National TV (ABC) and Canadian CBC. Jalali’s articles and comments are also published in New York Times, Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor and many other major U.S and European papers. Many of his scholarly articles are published by the Parameters, the senior professional journal of the U.S. Army, from 2001-2010
Jalali has taught at higher education institutions of Afghanistan and the United States and extensively lectured at U.S. Army War College, U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California, the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the British Army Staff College, Camberley, England and UAE National Defense College, Abu Dhabi.
Professor Jalali has native fluency in English, Pashto, Dari, Persian (Farsi) and Tajik languages, and he is fluent in Russian while confidently translates from French, and has functional knowledge of Arabic, Turkish and Urdu.
Areas of InterestPublicationsEducation
- Counter-Insurgency and Counter-Terrorism Operations
- Post-Conflict Stabilization and Reconstruction
- Counter-Narcotics Operations
- Afghanistan’s bubble of Optimism bursts, The Hill, Congress Blog, and November 18, 2015
- Renewing Afghanistan’s Social Contract, IPI Global Observatory, December 8, 2015
- Forging Afghanistan National Unity Government,” a Peace Brief Paper at USIP (December 2014) on discussing the Challenges facing the Afghanistan National Unity Government.
- The Security Sector reform in Afghanistan-Achievements and Setbacks, published by the Journal of International Peace Operations (JIPO),March 2012
- Non-State Armed Groups-Challenges and Opportunities, published by the Special Issue of the International Red Cross Journal, Geneva, Summer 2011
- Commentary on the Kandahar Jail break (Pervasive Corruption and Public Distrust), published in New York Times’ opinion page on April 26, 2010.
- “Afghanistan in Transition,” published in the autumn 2010 issue of Parameters which is available on line.
- Commentary on S. Strategy Review for Afghanistan in New York Times’ opinion page on December 16 2010.
- What to expect from General Petraeus, New York Times, June 24, 2010
- Afghanistan: Long-term Solutions and Perilous Shortcuts, Prism Quarterly (NDU), published in September 2010 Issue
- Is Fair Election in Afghanistan Possible, New York Times, October 21, 2009
- Is it Time to Negotiate with the Taliban, New York Times, Sep 1, 2009
- Afghanistan: A Long Hot Summer and A Call for Change, Far Eastern Economic Review, July/August 2009 issue
- Winning in Afghanistan, Parameters, Spring 2009 issue, Carlisle Barracks, Penn, USA, May 2009
- How to Win in Afghanistan, OP-ED, The Washington Times, March 1, 2009
- Afghanistan: Regaining Momentum, Parameters, winter 2007-2008 issue, Carlisle Barracks, Penn, USA, Jan 2008
- Expeditionary Forces: Superior Technology Defeated – The Battle of Maiwand. Coauthored with Lester W. Grau. A book chapter in “The British Army 1815-1914,) Harold E. Raugh Jr. Ed. Ashgate Publishing Limited, England, USA. 2006
- Combating Opium in Afghanistan. 2006. Coauthored with Robert B. Oakley and Zoe Hunter. Strategic Forum No. 224, Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University, November 2006, Washington D.C.
- Forbidden Cross-Border Vendetta: Spetsnaz Strike into Pakistan during the Soviet-Afghan, Journal of Slavic Military Studies, December 2006
- Five Years later Afghanistan Pays for Sins of Omission. Baltimore Sun, October 8, 2006. It was also published by several other major papers across the country and the Khalij Times. The article reviewed the past five years and made suggestions on ways to improve the security situation in Afghanistan.
- Nation Building on the Cheap. 2006. The Washington Post, May 28, 2006
- The Future of Afghanistan, Parameters, Spring 2006 issue, Carlisle Barracks, Penn, USA, Feb 2006
- Afghanistan in 2002: The Struggle to Win Peace, Asian Survey, University of Berkley, Ca. January 2003
- Demobilizing War machines: Making Peace last, a paper presented at and published by the U.N. conference on Rebuilding Societies Emerging from Conflict (September 9-11, 2002)
- Rebuilding Afghanistan’s National Army, Parameters, US. Army War College, Autumn, 2002
- Afghanistan: Political Participation and Security, Georgetown University, Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, Summer 2002
- Russian-Iranian Strategic Partnership, Parameters, US. Army War College, Winter 2001
- A detailed Military Analysis of the Battle of Maiwand (Pashto), Afghan Cultural Association, Peshawar, 2000
- Expeditionary Forces: Superior Technology Defeated – The Battle of Maiwand,”S. Military Review, May-June 2001
- Afghanistan: the Anatomy of an Ongoing Conflict, Parameters, US. Army War College, spring 2001
- The Campaign for the caves : the battles of Zhawar in the soviet-Afghan war – la guerre des grottes : la bataille de Zhawar pendant la guerre soviétique en Afghanistan, Journal of slavic military studies (the) , 2001, vol. 14 n°3, p. 69-92 Vértitable guerilla, la bataille de Zhawar a montré les insuffisances de tactique des deux armées.
- Iran-Central Asia: Reminiscing the Past and Looking to the Future, Central Asia Monitor, No. 4, 2001
- Islam as a Political Force in Central Asia: The Iranian Influence, Central Asia Monitor, No. 2, 1999
- Kashmir: Flashpoint or Safety Valve? By Mr. Lester W. Grau Foreign Military Studies Office, Fort Leavenworth, KS. And Mr. Ali A. Jalali. This article was previously published in Military Review July-August 1999.
- Night Stalkers and Mean Streets: Afghan Urban Guerrillas, by Mr. Ali A. Jalali and Mr. Lester W. Grau, Foreign Military Studies Office, Fort Leavenworth, KS. This article was previously published in Infantry January-April 1999.
- Wither the Taliban? Taliban–A Model for “Islamicising” Central Asia? The Cyber-Caravan, Johns Hopkins University, vol. 1, No. 4, March, 6, 1999
- Underground Combat: Stereophonic Blasting, Tunnel Rats and the Soviet-Afghan War – Lester Grau and Ali Ahmad Jalali. Engineer article November 1998
- The Break-up of State Structures in Afghanistan, in Persian, Mehragan (Iranian Journal), Summer 1998
- The Clash of Values and Interests in Afghanistan, Institute of World Politics, Washington D.C. 1995
- Identity Issues in Central Asia (1994), Institute of World Politics, Washington D.C. 1994
- Russia’s Military Establishment in Transition, Institute of World Politics, Washington D.C. 1993
- Strategic and Operational Aspects of the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan, International Conference on Light Infantry, Seattle, 1985
- S.-Kazakhstan Strategic Partnership: An hour-long documentary published and broadcast by VOA in several languages, 1994
- Civil-Military Relations in a Democracy: An hour-long documentary published and broadcast by VOA in several languages, 1995
- Intellectual Property Rights: A seven-part series of reports published and broadcast by VOA in several languages, 1995
- Poppies Along the Silk Road: An hour-long documentary published and broadcast by VOA in several languages, 1995
- Afghanistan- The War of the Neighbors: An hour-long documentary published by VOA and broadcast in several languages, 1996
- More than 400 reports and news analyses in English on Iran, Afghanistan and Central Asia published and broadcast by the Voice of America
- Over 450 of analytical reports (English) for VOA on political, economic and social developments in Central Asia and the Caucasus, 1993-2001
- Hundreds of Dari/Pashto articles and features were published in Afghanistan (mostly in the Military Journal) or broadcast on Radio Afghanistan between 1965 and 1978
Books and Book Chapters
- A Military History of Afghanistan from the Great Game to the Global War on Terror” University Press of Kansas, March 2017
- Countering Narcotics in Afghanistan. ”A book chapter in the Institute of National Strategic Studies (INSS) “Global Security Assessment,” National Defense University. October 2008
- Afghanistan: The Challenge of State Building. A book chapter in “Afghanistan: transition Under Threat,” Geoffrey Hayes, editor, and Mark Sedra, editor, Wilfrid Laurier University Press, August 2008
- The Future of Security Forces in Afghanistan. Book chapter in “The Future of Afghanistan,” United States Institute of Peace (USIP). January 2009
- Afghanistan: The legacy of War and the Challenge of Peace Building.2006. A book chapter in “Building a New Afghanistan,” by Robert I. Rutberg ed. edited by Brookings Institution Press and the World Peace Foundation, 2006
- Irregular Warfare of Pashtun Tribes in Fighting the Mughal Empire in 16th and 17th centuries, Kabul, February 2012
- Monograph: Afghanistan – Challenges of the Transition to Peace, Emirate Center for Strategic Studies and research(ECSSR), Abu Dhabi, December 2012
- The Challenge of Security Transition in Afghanistan – Book Chapter, Singapore National University, July 2012
- The Other Side of the Mountain, co-authored with Lester Grau, U.S. Marine Corps 1998, Barnes and Nobles 2001, Cass Publishers 2002. Several other publishers. It is an analytical review of Mujahedin war with the Soviet forces in Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989, 2002, 2011.
- Trans-national Crime and the challenge for regional cooperation – a book Chapter in “the Non-Traditional Security Challenges in Asia,” Routledge India, June 2015. The book is a collection of essays that explore how non-traditional issues can manifest as security challenges, and the role of the state and military in dealing with these
- The Challenge of Regaining Momentum in Afghanistan. A book chapter in “Asian Security” by the Institute of Defense and Strategic Analysis (IDSA), New Delhi, India, February 2009
- Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces in Transition, USIP, Washington DC, May 2016
- Selected Literary Works of Ustad G. Jilani Jalali, Introduction and Ed. Kabul, 2005
- The Voroshilov Lectures, translated from lecture notes from the Soviet General Staff Academy and co-edited in three volumes, NDU Press, 1989, 1990, 1992
- A Historical Perspective on Iran-Afghan Relation, a chapter in the book titled “Iran and Eurasia” edited by Ali Mohammadi, Ithaca Press, London, 2000
- The Theory of Combat, Institute of Military Conflict, 1989, Participated as member of the Institute in authoring a theoretical understanding of the nature of the combat process as a basis for model and simulation development,
- The Life and Times of the Afghan Classic Warrior Khushal Khan, in Pashto, Kabul, 1978
- Studies in Afghanistan History from a Military Perspective, two volumes, MOD Press, Kabul, 1967. A detailed study of political and strategic trends in Afghanistan’s military history (1100 pages)
- War and Diplomacy, a 12 chapter book on the use of military power in international relations (450 pages). It was based on lectures I offered as professor at the Institute of Diplomacy (War College), Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kabul, 1974-1978
- Military strategy in Limited Wars, in Dari, Kabul, 1971
- Textbook on Small Units Tactics (platoon, company), in Dari, Kabul, 1968
- Textbook on larger Units Tactics (Battalion, Regiment, Division), in Dari, Kabul, 1976
- Pages of Afghan History: A collection of 150 radio programs for Radio Afghanistan, Kabul, 1969-1975
- Army Training programs for Infantry and Tank units (CPX, Field Exercise and Wargames), Kabul, 1972
- Afghan Military University, BA. Military Science. 1961
- U.S. Army Infantry Advance Course, Ft. Benning , Ga. Diploma 1964
- Higher Command and Staff Course (Regiment, Division, Army), Kabul, MA, Military Science. 1966
- British Staff College, England, PSC 1967
- Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey Ca. USA, Diploma, Defense Management, 1978
- Academy Frunze, Moscow, Military Strategy and Operational Art, 1980
- The Institute of World Politics, Washington D.C., Graduate Certificate, Comparative Politics, 1996