US vs Taliban: The splendid defeat in Afghanistan

Web DeskWeb Editor

18th Aug, 2021. 09:18 pm
Taliban flag raised above Pakistan border

Taliban take complete control of the Afghan presidential palace after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani escaped from his own country on August 15, 2021, from Kabul, Afghanistan.

In Afghanistan, the turn of events were shocking but certainly not surprising.

The Taliban’s intense cooping of the country’s main cities and finishing in their march towards the capital completely unchallenged as President Ashraf Ghani escaped the country.

This all was expected, yes, but no so swiftly, so exultantly, so humiliatingly.

Since the war began in Afghan land about 20 years ago, consecutive US managements ignored the wall writings, extending the unavoidable, while deteriorating to prepare for what was coming.

In 2001 it took the US and its associates two months to “release” Kabul from the Taliban.

Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, declared at a news conference in Kabul on May 1, 2003, that “major combat activity” was over.

Therefore the history repeats itself it took mere weeks for the Taliban to take complete control of Afghanistan.

Something similar was witnessed by the world in 2021 when the Taliban declared that the “war is over in Afghanistan”.

As the US occupation stumbled, the deposed Taliban regrouped and launched a merciless asymmetrical war on the US and Afghan government forces for much of the following two decades.

US administrations intentionally mislead the Americans into thinking everything was excellent on the war front in Afghanistan, which on the contrary, was anything but – just the same as happened in the Vietnam War.

The scene of US employees escaping Kabul last week was much similar to what happened at Saigon in 1975.

The US has suffered a few thousand casualties, but tens of thousands of Afghan security forces have died, and an untold number of civilians have become the real victims of the war, which has destroyed the lives and livelihoods of countless families and communities.

The failure of the Afghan government forces which was followed by the extraction of the remnants of US war troops has left Washington and others in the western world rubbing their heads for solutions.

Some of these answers include the war skeptics, who have been warning that Afghanistan was a verified “graveyard of empires”, be it the 19th-century British Empire or the 20th-century Soviet empire.

In the words of the ancient Greek Macedonian emperor, Alexander the Great, Afghanistan is “easy to march into but hard to march out of”.

America was in no disposition for such historical orientations after the 9/11 attacks hit at the heart of its economic and military symbols in New York and Washington and killed almost 3,000 Americans.

The Bush government’s judgment to takeoff a second catastrophic and exorbitant war against Iraq left Afghanistan in a terrible passage, Washington was unable to recover the initiative afterward.

The failure of the Obama government’s Afghanistan-Pakistan policy of group gush beckoned the start of the end of the war.

The Trump government’s judgment to participate in the Taliban diplomatically seemed to be the establishment of the US conceding the country to the insistent group in part or as a whole.

The Biden government’s conclusion to prompt the US withdrawal irrespective of the diplomatic, military or strategic outcome, left the Afghan government to fend for itself while knowing all too well it could not last long.

To sum up the situation, this may have been unavoidable seeing the US mistakes and its partners’ faults, but it did not have to be so completely demeaning.

Furthermore, the disgrace is the one silver lining after the two decades of catastrophe, educating Washington to elude war at all cost in the future.

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