chapter  2
36 Pages

State, tribe and empire in Afghan inter-polity relations

Chapter 2 STATE, TRIBE AND EMPIRE IN AFGHAN INTERPOLITY RELATIONS

reflect a territorial view of boundaries while at the same time leaving more space than could be digested for imperial adventure by those who might advocate such unabashedly imperial sentiments as these: 'In the interests ... of peace ... of commerce •.. of moral and material improvement ... 43 interference in Afghanistan has now become a duty'. Such vague and romantic imperial ideas were never entirely excluded from the debate over the Afghanistan question, but they were rarely politically palatable, except perhaps in the Disraeli years, 1874-80.