15.08.2021 – 18:59
Central Bavarian Newspaper
The events in the Hindu Kush are precipitous. By the time these lines appear, the radical Taliban have probably already “peacefully” taken over parts of the Afghan capital Kabul. After the hasty withdrawal of the Allied troops a few weeks ago, it was only a matter of time before the armed fundamentalists would regain control of the entire country. The state power, pampered by the West for two decades, and the Afghan army fell apart at a breathtaking pace. The Taliban no longer had to overcome any noteworthy resistance. Big cities, like houses of cards, also fell under their advance.
In the West, however, no one had expected that things would go so quickly. The last chapter of the shameful fiasco of the allies reveals once again all the errors, omissions and misjudgments of the two decades of military action. The US and its allies failed in Afghanistan not only militarily, but also politically and morally. The return of the Taliban to power seals a bitter defeat for the West – and is at the same time a heavy burden for the future. After that, where will the West be taken seriously?
It was already a hopeless endeavor to militarily defeat the Taliban, who had come to power in the turmoil of the 1990s. Political upheavals, no matter how disgusting the regimes, are difficult to bring about with outside intervention. The British first had to go through similar bad experiences in the 19th and early 20th centuries, and later the Soviet Union in the 1980s. They withdrew from the country as defeated.
Politically, the West failed primarily because there was no concept for an Afghanistan without the Taliban. Driving the radical fundamentalists out of the big cities was still relatively easy after the invasion twenty years ago. But the establishment of a semi-democratic, civilian state hardly went beyond approaches. The government in Kabul, backed by the billions of dollars from the West, was paralyzed by corruption and internal disputes. Presidential elections, for example, were accompanied by months of disputes over power and thus over the “meat pots” of Western aid funds. The USA, Germany and the other participating countries spent much more, namely tens of billions, on their military actions. How many schools, universities and hospitals could civil aid organizations, such as Kinderhilfe Afghanistan, run by the active ex-Bundeswehr doctor Reinhard Erös, have built with it?
The Allies’ high-tech military machine ultimately withdrew from the Taliban, which was not very well armed, because a troop withdrawal in the USA was intended domestically. Ex-President Donald Trump had ordered him. His successor Joe Biden blindly followed his instructions, also in order not to be brought before the Republicans.
Afghanistan is now developing into a moral fiasco for Germany too. After the withdrawal of the Bundeswehr at the end of June, not all of the former Afghan aid workers, aid organizations and the embassy have been taken out of the country and thus safe from the Taliban’s vengeance. Instead of taking decisive action immediately, the foreign and defense departments pushed the buck to each other. German planes are not supposed to take off for Kabul until after the weekend this Monday. One can only hope that this – with all due respect – bureaucratic laziness of Berlin ministries will not claim further victims.
Central Bavarian Newspaper
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Original content from: Mittelbayerische Zeitung, transmitted by news aktuell