AFGHANISTAN: WAR WITHOUT END PART 1 OF 3
Veteran broadcaster Sandy Gall recounts the history of Afghanistan from the time of Alexander the Great to the Taliban. A long and turbulent journey of invasion and resistance.
It is probable that there were well-developed civilizations in S Afghanistan in prehistoric times, but the archaeological record is not clear. Certainly cultures had flourished in the north and east before the Persian king Darius I (c.500 BC;) conquered these areas. Later, Alexander the Great conquered (329-327 BC;) them on his way to India.
After Alexander's death (323 BC;) the region at first was part of the Seleucid empire. In the north, Bactria became independent, and the south was acquired by the Maurya dynasty.
Bactria expanded southward but fell (mid-2d cent. BC;) to the Parthians and rebellious tribes (notably the Saka). Buddhism was introduced from the east by the Yüechi, who founded the Kushan dynasty (early 2d cent. BC;). Their capital was Peshawar.
The Kushans declined (3d cent. AD;) and were supplanted by the Sassanids, the Ephthalites, and the Turkish Tu-Kuie.