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Afghanistan Pullout by the US forces in an abrupt manner turned out to be a historic blunder

Do we know who raised the Taliban? It was Major General Naseerullah Babar, Late Ms Benazir Bhutto’s Interior Minister. In the year 1974, Babar with ISI links was tasked to identify, raise, train and fund Tajik rebels which included Ahmad Shah Massoud. Later, he created the Taliban and fondly referred to them as ‘my boys’. Further Maulana Sami ul Haq’s Madrassa at North-West Frontier Province (NWFP), Darul Uloom Haqqania was the indoctrination centre of these Taliban fighters. He was a minister in the Bhutto government too.

Taliban spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid told a press conference on Tuesday that he could not confirm reports of a meeting with the CIA Director, but said they are communicating with all embassies located in Kabul. There is a new group that is taking shape on the lines of BRICS, called PRIC nations – Pakistan, Russia, Iran, and China and their embassies are still operating in Afghanistan and the Taliban has approached all its neighbouring nations regarding the diplomatic ties with it.

India is not recognising them as yet. Another development has been that 3 important leaders of the world namely Germany’s Angela Merkel, Italian PM, and Vladimir Putin spoke to the Indian Prime Minister and press communique released that Afghanistan was discussed as India has been evacuating Nepali citizens, who used to defend the embassy of Canada and were left behind by the Canada rescue team. In a few weeks from now, Angela Merkel will leave her office as Chancellor and a new Chancellor from the Christian Socialist Democrats will take over. It is quite possible Indian sorties may bring back few Germans, who were left behind in the mayhem. Italian evacuation plane was attacked yesterday, while the plane was in the air, which could have damaged the plane. These bullets were fired by the Taliban, who have taken control of the airport.

Different nations have employed different strategies to evacuate the staff which worked for them in different capacities. South Korea will amend its visa laws to accommodate around 380 Afghan people who arrived in its capital at Seoul. The evacuees, who worked for the South Korean embassy at Kabul in various humanitarian roles, will be given a special type of permit to allow them to stay in South Korea and find jobs. Japan sends SDF aircraft to Afghanistan for evacuations. It will be the first time the SDF has evacuated foreign nationals from foreign soil. Japanese diplomats were evacuated to Dubai last week after the embassy in the capital Kabul was shut on 15th August, the day Taliban too control, with the Taliban regime regaining control of the country 20 years after it was ousted from power by US-led allied forces, but some Japanese working for the international organizations remain there.

Asked about the Washington Post report of a meeting between CIA Director William Burns and de facto Taliban leader Abdul Ghani Baradar on Monday amid the US scramble to get American citizens out of Afghanistan before the self-imposed deadline of 31st August 2021, Mujahid said they “cannot confirm” whether such a meeting took place.

Sharia is not radical Islam. It is regular Islam which Muslim scholars have been begging for the world to pay attention to. Even Malala has been begging. What about our response? We can’t help – it’s your culture and we don’t want to be seen as Islamophobes. Glad that the Taliban opened the lid containing thousands of worms that got laid bare on the road for the whole world to watch. The royal King has no robes to wear and the loincloth is transparent!

When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful – Malala Yousafzai.

When the whole of Afghanistan was crying, you were silent – Resistance 2.0

We are glad you’re OK and safe. We are fighting for your rights! Next time be quicker!! #Malala.

Malala is a Pashtun. When Article 370 was abrogated in India #Malala used to say that girls (in Kashmir) will not be able to go to school. Now Pashto girls are being raped, they are being forcibly married, they are being kidnapped to become sex slaves and fatwa has been issued for women to stay locked in the homes, since new fighters are not trained to be disciplined soldiers, to Taliban gun-wielding terrorists. Then Malala has no regrets.

#UK and #BBC made a lot of investment in making a true image makeover of #Malala after the Taliban attack! Waiting for a return on investment on large scale was the main motive!

Afghanistan itself is responsible for its present-day crisis. A nation, which suffered at the hands of the Taliban, could not prepare itself even after getting assistance and protection from America for about twenty years, then whom to blame. It was a rentier state and survives on dole money and they could not build any state mechanisms to collect taxes from rich people. No one wants to pay any taxes.

It is the rampant corruption of Afghan army commanders and their politicians, (as the reports are coming in) that led to the downfall of the country. The myth about Afghan bravery just washed down like the dust with the first shower of the season. Indian scriptwriters have been laid bare naked in the form of Javed Ansari, who wrote the famous script of Zanjeer. The world saw how the begums of Afghanistan were absent from the thousands waiting at the Kabul airport to leave the country and no Islamic country has come forward to take them in fulfilment of ummah and only lip service in return.

It is the Afghan people who will have to stand together to face and fight this menace, without depending on the lollypop promises of foreign help. He did say, however, that the Taliban is “in communication with all embassies present in Kabul”, in an effort to “maintain diplomatic relations” as they attempt to implement a new government.

There were no details on the alleged meeting with the CIA Head, but the US has been rushing to meet an August 31 deadline for the evacuation of American citizens from Afghanistan, something some experts doubt can be done. As per a column only 7% of the Americans were evacuated as check posts have been erected and each and everyone who tries to reach the airport is checked thoroughly and if Afghanistan nationals try to leave they are sent back.

Representative Adam Schiff (D-California) called such a target “unlikely” after a classified briefing this week. The Taliban said on Tuesday they “will not extend the deadline” as it is already beyond the original deadline for leaving the country set by former President Donald Trump, who planned on the US leaving by May 31st, 2021.

White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan previously said control of the airport in Kabul and the evacuation of US citizens has been a topic of discussion with the Taliban, though President Joe Biden has not considered negotiating with the Taliban himself.

“With respect to whether President Biden is likely to speak to the leadership of the Taliban, that is not in contemplation at this time,” he said. 

When leaders of the G7, a club of rich countries, met in Cornwall, in southwest England, in June 2021 Afghanistan was an afterthought, meriting just three sentences in a 25-page document. The leaders demanded an “inclusive political settlement” and airily declared their determination to maintain support for the Afghan government. Two months later that government does not exist anymore and Western countries are scrambling to evacuate their citizens and allies from Kabul before America’s self-imposed deadline of August 31st, 2021.

On August 24th, with a week to go, Boris Johnson, Britain’s Prime Minister, convened a virtual meeting of leaders from the G7, which is still chaired by Britain. They were joined by António Guterres, the secretary-general of the United Nations, Jens Stoltenberg, who leads NATO, and Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm. Mr Johnson’s primary aim was to persuade President Joe Biden to extend the deadline, allowing more time for evacuations. He came away disappointed—Mr. Biden would not budge.

In spite of all the rustling and bustling going on at the ground level, background work is going on with an interim government with Abdullah Abdullah and Hamid Karzai on board and some representation of the Northern Alliance along with Taliban could be the next acceptable format in the making. Seems the realities are changing. Abdullah Abdullah can be trusted by India, as he studied ophthalmology from AIIMS, stayed as a state guest in Maharani Baugh and his 3 daughters were given admission to complete medicine education in India.

Why Pakistan didn’t open a university on terrorism. Because terrorists don’t need a university! They need a safe haven, they need a hiding spot with opium, hashish, and ganza. Afghanistan produces them worth 6 Billion dollars worth of it and Pakistan has made hundreds of safe hiding spots to play I, spy!

The Biden administration gave the Taliban a list of Americans still in the country. They gave a terrorist organization that they have said on record that they do not trust kill lists. Let that sink in for general consumption.

Imagine being an Afghan. Period. Death looms every second in the mind.

An interesting development took place on 26th August when a massive blast took place and an Italian rescue plane was shot on the runway and many nations have stopped further evacuations. Sri Lankan numbering around 70 is still trapped. The death toll from the Kabul airport attack jumped to 170 people including 32 men, 3 women, and 3 children. The identity of 132 others is still unidentifiable. Nearly 200 people were also wounded. This was heart wrecking. Meanwhile, the US service members’ death toll has significantly jumped from 13; and few more bodies were accounted for.

Title image courtesy: https://www.vox.com/world/2019/7/1/20677249/afghanistan-kabul-explosion-taliban-attack

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of the Government of India and Defence Research and Studies

Rajiv Prakash Saxena

By Rajiv Prakash Saxena

Rajiv Prakash Saxena was the Group Head at NIC for over a decade and was heading NIC prior to retirement after 33 years of service in 2015. He was instrumental for the rapid growth of NIC, working on several projects across Union Ministries and other agencies, including the Parliament, Law & Law Commission, NHRC, NCM, eSign, Certifying Authority (CA) to issue Digital Signature Certificates (DSCs), MoUD, Housing & Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO), Delhi Development Authority and many others. He has authored several guidelines to establish operational standards for the government agencies and a number of books in the area of his work. He has done 8 UN assignments across the globe for different UN organisations. Rajiv has won few awards, including best alumni from UBC, Vancouver. Rajiv was the founding Director of NCTI and NICSI and advisor to SIDBI and Delhi Police.