Having been delighted at the welcome received by Shah Shujah on entering the city, Macnaghten decided to hold a Durbar to celebrate the first success of the campaign and to iterate Shah Shujah's legitimacy. A spectacular parade was arranged with Shujah receiving the salute of the troops. A 101 gun salute thundered out to proclaim his position. It was a textbook exercise in the show of power except for one thing. Almost no Afghans turned up to view the spectacle. Barely 100 curious Afghans bothered to show up and they were bemused by the show of force. This lack of enthusiasm should have come as a warning to the British that their candidate for leader of afghanistan had less than overwhelming support. Macnaghten was disappointed but did not allow this setback to change his course of action.

First Afghan War | Afghan War Images

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by Stephen Luscombe