This chapter highlights the various forms of alignment policies and factionalism among the Qataghan Uzbeks, one of the major Uzbek tribal confederations residing in northeastern Afghanistan. Following some brief notes on the socio-political history of the region I shall focus on the strategies that the Uzbeks of northeastern Afghanistan have developed since their final subjugation by the Afghan state in 1888. Living in an area inhabited by a large number of different ethno-linguistic groups, the creation of inter-ethnic networks became one of the major strategies to defend local political interests against the Afghan state, which tried to establish a firmer control in the region. Until the communist coup d’état of 1978 it was in particular the former tribal leadership of the Uzbeks-once politically dominant in northeastern Afghanistan-that played a crucial role as intermediaries between the Afghan state and local society and as coordinators of numerous inter-ethnic alliances. More than two decades of war and civil war have, however, resulted in major alterations of the socio-political structure of the country. Among the most notable changes are the emergence of new types of leadership, e.g. the Mujahedin commanders, and the growing politicization and self-awareness of Afghanistan’s minority groups, such as the Hazaras and the Uzbeks. All this had repercussions on the formation of alignment networks and the interaction of the various ethno-linguistic groups at the local and national level, as well as on the role of political leaders.