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Kabul airport bombing underscores Taliban’s challenges in securing a volatile Afghanistan

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Geographically, too, the militants face obstacles. Thanks to billions of dollars in American and Western aid, Kabul is now a booming, diverse metropolis of 6 million people, far larger and more developed than the capital the Taliban ruled decades ago. After their ouster in 2001, when U.S. forces entered Afghanistan following 9/11, the militants controlled swaths of rural hinterlands, but have little experience in securing and governing urban areas.

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