24/1/1916 Afghanistan allies with Germany. Or does it?

Germany has sent a diplomatic mission to Afghanistan, hoping to persuade the country’s king to launch an invasion of British India. The mission is led by Oskar von Niedermayer, an orientalist adventurer, and Werner von Hentig, a career diplomat. They have been received cordially by the Afghans but King Habibullah has been non-committal in his responses to their entreaties.

But now at last Habibullah signs an agreement with his German guests. The agreement appears to commit the Muslim king to launch an invasion of India, joining the Jihad against the Allies proclaimed by the Turkish Sultan and Caliph.

Unfortunately for the Germans, the details of the agreement are less binding on the Afghan king. Afghanistan does not have to go to war until the Germans supply Habibullah with substantial quantities of arms, advisors and money. Given how difficult if was for Niedermayer and Hentig to travel to Kabul across British and Russian patrolled Persia these gifts are unlikely to arrive in Kabul in the immediate future. Habibullah has effectively committed to an imaginary Jihad that will never take place.

image source:

Members of the Hentig-Niedermayer expedition (German Colonial Uniforms)

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