|Title||Constructing Narcoterrorism as Danger: Afghanistan and the Politics of Security and Representation|
Afghanistan has become a country synonymous with danger. Discourses of narcotics, terrorism, and narcoterrorism have come to define the country and the current conflict. However, despite the prevalence of these dangers globally, they are seldom treated as political representations. This project theorizes danger as a political representation by deconstructing and problematizing contemporary discourses of (narco)terrorism in Afghanistan. Despite the globalisation of these two discourses of danger, (narco)terrorism remains largely under-theorised, with the focus placed on how to overcome this problem rather than critically analysing it as a representation. The argument being made here is that (narco)terrorism is not some ‘new’ existential danger, but rather reflects the hegemonic and counterhegemonic use of danger to establish authority over the collective identity. Using the case study of Afghanistan, this project critically analyses representations of danger emerging from the Afghan government and the Taliban. While many studies have looked at terrorism and narcotics as security concerns, there has not been a critical analysis of these two dangers as a political representation in the Afghan context. Therefore, this study will be of great benefit to scholars and practitioners of security as it presents a unique look on how identity is shaped through representations of danger in Afghanistan. Through applying Critical Discourse Analysis to contemporary representations in Afghanistan, this study provides new insight into the aims and objectives of both the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban.