Kabul, Afghanistan, the capital and largest city of the country and the capital of Kabul province. It is on the Kabul River in east-central Afghanistan, just south of the lofty Hindu Kush range. Elevation is about 5,900 feet (1,800 m).
Kabul is Afghanistan's chief center of commerce and industry. Many of the city's manufactured products, such as rugs and leather items, are made as handicrafts. Kabul is also a transportation hub served by major highways and an international airport. Educational institutions include Kabul University, founded in 1932, and several technical institutes. Kabul Museum has archeological and ethnographic exhibits.
Kabul was founded more than 3,300 years ago and at various times has been known as Kubha and Kabura. The city was conquered by Muslim Arabs in the 7th century A.D. and plundered by Mongols under Genghis Khan in the early 13th century. From 1504 until 1738 it was controlled by the Moguls, who ruled most of the time from India. Kabul became the capital of Afghanistan in 1773, replacing Kandahar. British troops briefly occupied the city during two Afghan wars in the 19th century. In the late 1970's Kabul was the operational center for the Soviet Union in its military occupation of Afghanistan. Continued warfare following the withdrawal of Soviet forces in 1989 had left much of the city in ruin by the late 1990's.