Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Friday, January 15th, 2021

Taliban Seek to Monopolize Power

The Taliban seem to be in pursuit of monopolization of power since they are narrowing the room for ethnic and religious minority groups. Practicing upon fundamental ideology, the Taliban show no tolerance towards people of certain ethnicity and discriminate them on the grounds of their caste, color, and creed. The recent explosion in Bamyan province, which is one of the most secure provinces with peaceful people, indicates lack of the militants’ tolerance towards a certain ethnic group.
During their regime (1996-2001), the Taliban spilled the blood of people on the basis of their ethnic and religious tendencies and marginalized them from political arena. People suffered severely as a result of their religious, ethnic and linguistic differences and simply tried for survival under the Taliban group, which totally monopolized the power. A large number of individuals were killed simply for belonging to the ethnicity or practicing upon the creed different from those of the Taliban members.
The Taliban fighters still practice upon the same ideology and view people from the lens of religious and ethnic tendencies. The collapse of the Taliban’s regime by US-led NATO forces had to be an eye-opener for the group and it had to give up their ethnocentric mindset and stopped killing people for religious and ethnic reasons and demolishing sacred places, mainly mosques. However, the Taliban continue their ethnocentric policies and destructive role and seek to monopolize power although they said earlier that they did not intend to do so. Currently, the Taliban have installed checkpoints on highways which connect secure provinces, where ethnic minorities live, with capital cities and provinces, which indicates their one-dimensional policy and destabilizing the areas where minorities reside.
Afghans, mainly ethnic minorities, fear that if the Taliban return to power, they will marginalize people from political participation on the basis of their religion and ethnicity, not to mention the gender. The Taliban’s radical ideology seem to be irreconcilable with democratic system to include people of all ethnicity and religious beliefs. Despite their claim, the group could not prove their tolerance towards people of different ethnicity. Their parochial mindset persists in their daily practices and their discriminatory approaches continue unabated. Based on such policy, the Taliban try to shift the war and violence to secure provinces.
It is self-evident that lack of tolerance towards ethnic and religious groups is the main reason behind the ongoing violence and bloodshed. The Taliban are largely involved in killing civilians, including women and children, simply for not being tolerant towards them and viewing them from their parochial mindset.
It should be noted that the Taliban will not be able to impose their radical mindset on the people of Afghanistan. That is to say, if the Taliban do not accept the inclusion of all Afghans, regardless of their ethnic and religious inclination, reaching an agreement will be unlikely. Peace agreement should be approved and supported by Afghan people, including the minority groups.
If the Taliban seek to monopolize the power, history will repeat itself and the conflict will not come to an end. With this in mind, the Taliban have to accept an inclusive system with all people on board.
The Taliban have to learn from the history and do not seek to make it repeat. To view the civil unrest, lack of tolerance and fundamentalism were the main reasons behind. Streams of blood were shed in the wake of discriminatory and radical view. Peace and stability will emerge only if all people tolerate one another and practice upon moderate worldview.
However, the Taliban have never abandoned their radical mindset. Worst, recently, the Taliban carry out suicide attacks without claiming the responsibility so as to avoid international pressure. They intend to show that other groups are involved in attacks on educational centers and sacred places as well as attacks on civilians.
It is clear that the Taliban have not cut their ties with the international terrorist groups and have their hands in glove with them. They support other terrorist networks in carrying out attacks in cities, where civilians are killed in large numbers.
To sum up, the Taliban have to note that seeking to monopolize the power will be counterproductive and unacceptable to the people of Afghanistan. Meanwhile, their involvement in the killing of civilians as well as their discriminatory mindset are likely to derail the peace talks or at least create many obstacles to the process. Afghans support a democratic and inclusive system with all on board.