The United States forces are not comfortable in Afghanistan despite their decade-long occupation. The resistance posed by the Taliban is growing tougher and tougher with every passing week. The chances of the American Success are apparently decreasing. The story of the American invasion seems to meet the same fate that was once the doom of the British or the Russian forces. A famous English movie “Remnants of an Army” presents the sorrowful tale of the British retreat from Afghanistan during the nineteenth century.
The British forces were logistically better placed because India was under British rule. The border was common. So was the case during the Russian invasion of the twentieth century, while the United States is hundreds of miles away from the Warfield. Naturally, it is urging Pakistan to give it the required logistic support. The Pakistani government is virtually left with no option other than bowing before the will of the US. Our rulers are caught between two fires as the people oppose the American policy.
The American “war on terror” has failed dismally for two numerous reasons. Firstly, it was based on a fundamental error. 9/11 was an act of terrorism not committed by a nation. Now the policy setters have realized their mistake. They are trying to restore the previous position but the situation seems to be beyond their control.
The Afghan President Karzai has made numerous attempts to start talks with the Taliban. He has offered them posts in the government. But they are unwilling to negotiate with Karzai because they think he is in the hands of foreign occupiers. Anyhow, both the Afghan groups have realized each other’s importance. They have real opinions about the affairs. Both the parties have realized that they must have a constitution.
The situation has eased up considerably. We no more hear the news of the Taliban attacking schools or teachers. The incidents of flogging the women have become the story of the past. Different foreign countries are taking back their troops from Afghanistan. It is hoped that a day will come when the Afghans will sit on a table and break the ice. Their unity is the only solution to their problems.
The US and British involvement in Iraq has given them deep wounds. They cannot afford to sustain the same type of injuries in Afghanistan. Their people have turned against them because of their aggressive designs. These two campaigns have a far greater impact on their international standing than even the Second World War. The recent economic recession is the direct outcome of these expansionist designs.
The Taliban in Afghanistan are the sons of the soil while the Americans are the foreigners. This is an important factor. As time has shown, the second generation of Afghans has got involved in this war. Those who were just the kids of eight or ten years are new grown-up young men. They have seen their near and dear ones being butchered before them. How can they spare their enemies? Their revengeful anger is their guiding force. The American forces, on the other hand, lack such motivation.
The American think-tanks are openly suggesting the withdrawal. The real threat to the UK and the US is not the growing militancy in Afghanistan but rather it is the production of opium. Its production has gone so high that 90% of the heroin sold in the UK goes from Afghanistan. This is more shocking to the British thinkers than the Suicide bombers. The US forces have been badly entangled in this quagmire.
Now the situation is worsening for the US. Some of the NATO countries have withdrawn their forces, and the rest of them in the process of withdrawal. As such, soon it will be the US only to bear the brunt of the Afghan War. If this occupation prolongs, the US forces will face the situation that once they faced in Vietnam. Therefore, the best word of advice for the US policymakers is that they should allow the Afghans to settle their problems themselves.