Urban Studies Senior Seminar Papers

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Suggested Citation: Benjamin Dubow. "Ethnicity, Space, and Politics in Afghanistan." University of Pennsylvania, Urban Studies Program. 2009.


The 2004 election was a disaster. For all the unity that could have come from 2001, the election results shattered any hope that the country had overcome its fractures. The winner needed to find a way to unite a country that could not be more divided. In Afghanistan’s Panjshir Province, runner-up Yunis Qanooni received 95.0% of the vote. In Paktia Province, incumbent Hamid Karzai received 95.9%. Those were only two of the seven provinces where more than 90% or more of the vote went to a single candidate. Two minor candidates who received less than a tenth of the total won 83% and 78% of the vote in their home provinces. For comparison, the most lopsided state in the 2004 United States was Wyoming, with 69% of the vote going to Bush. This means Wyoming voters were 1.8 times as likely to vote for Bush as were Massachusetts voters. Paktia voters were 120 times as likely to vote for Karzai as were Panjshir voters. While Wyoming composes .2% of the American population, those 7 provinces represent a full sixth of Afghanistan. . .



Date Posted: 30 July 2010