For Afghanistan, the last 24 hours have been a treacherous and sudden change in the times. Everything from the Taliban’s siege of the capital, Kabul, to Taliban control of all areas of Kabul, to President Ghani’s departure from Afghanistan, every development goes down in history.
After 9/11 2001, America persuaded the West to get on board to fight al-Qaeda and the Taliban. With all their might, they tried to prepare the Afghan army to fight terrorists on its own. After more than 20 years, all the work done, lots of money spend, and the many deaths did not seem to have changed much, except for the greater freedom of the citizens, which remained endangered by the many restrictions imposed on the people by the Taliban.
It is only logical and understandable that Joe Biden wanted to pull the plug on the endless well because it had already caused so many deaths while not much had changed in terms of substance. As soon it was made public that the U.S.A. would start a withdrawal of its troops, the Taliban very easily conquered one territory after the other.
According to the latest news from foreign media, Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naim told Al Jazeera on the 15th of August 2021, that the war in Afghanistan is over and the form of the regime will soon become clear. As Afghanistan’s second largest city, Kandahar is not only the economic, cultural and transport hub of southern Afghanistan, but also considered the most important city and “spiritual home” for the Taliban, therefore Taliban officials were proud to say on the 16th, that the southern Afghanistan Kandahar International Airport has been fully controlled by the Taliban. They even went to promise that Afghanistan’s domestic and international flights are expected to resume within three days.
On Mother’s Day, August 15, former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai said on television and social media that people had not to worry and that Afghanistan had formed a “coordination committee” to prepare for a peaceful transition of power, and to be responsible for maintaining security, law and order. Members of the Coordinating Committee would include Karzai, Abdullah and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of the Islamic Party of Afghanistan and a former prime minister. The committee called on Afghan government forces and the Taliban to avoid conflict and chaos. But a few hours later thousands of Afghans who had fled to Kabul airport, on the tarmac of Hamid Karzai International Airport, Afghanistan’s national airport, 16 kilometres from the centre of Kabul, could see their head of state fleeing, boarding a very large Boeing 747.
Why couldn’t the other seats there be filled with some of the many who also tried to flee?
It became a real chaos at that airport.
The same day, Mujahid announced on social media that Taliban militants had entered the city “to keep the population safe and maintain social order” as Afghan security forces in Kabul had given up their responsibilities and dispersed.
Ghani said in a statement on social media that day that he faced a difficult choice, and that his action was to safe as many Afghans as he could. In order to avoid the killing of the people, he decided to leave Afghanistan, to go first to Tajikistan.
The U.S. military on the 15th used a number of helicopters from the embassy in Afghanistan to evacuate personnel, its embassy compound on the same day rose a plume of smoke. Some sources said it was the “urgent destruction of sensitive documents” by U.S. diplomats.
NATO said in a statement the same day, NATO will continue to maintain its diplomatic presence in Kabul, and to provide assistance to keep Kabul airport running.
I wonder how much work they shall invest to safeguard all those people, who in the last 20 years helped them in getting certain goods, having them to communicate with Afghanis, translating for the troops as well as for the press. What I could see from television reporting was that it more looked that the West abandons all those people who helped them in the past. A real shame!
At the moment it looks like the Taliban has conquered the country and soon shall be planning to bring back the sharia law as well as taking away the right for young women to study and to do a proper job. Possibly Afghanistan shall come back to be a country in the Middle ages, with the oppression of women and the impossibility of religious freedom.