Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, January 27th, 2021

 Military Withdrawal is not a Sign of Failure


 Military Withdrawal is  not a Sign of Failure

Nowadays, two diametric opposite reasons are given for the US and NATO military withdrawal from Afghanistan. Either of them seems extreme-like notions. On one hand, it is said that US and NATO military withdrawal is just a desperate struggle for face-saving disengagement and leaving Afghanistan to the hands chaotic forces. On the other hand, it said that what they wanted has been achieved and, hereafter, this is Afghan people who have to decide about their destiny.

Before siding with either notion, let me tell you something. Once I was in a class of political thought and the Prof was really enjoying seeing students being so talkative and challenging his ideas about this and that topic. I can never forget when the discussion tilted towards the issue of Afghanistan, its sovereignty and national integrity. What Prof maintained was that the NATO and U.S. armies are bound to fail. No problem what the cost would be, Afghans did not allow them to stay and rule their country. He was arguing that history showed that Afghanistan was never occupied by any emperors and thus they are not born to accept foreigners' rule or the government appointed by them. Thus, it was best for the US and NATO to leave the country as soon as possible and let Afghans to decide about the forms government and its compositional structure.

I do not reject that Afghans are somehow xenophobic and always stood against foreigners' open and obvious interference to issue of their countries. If ever in the history—modern history since two to three centuries back—we find that Afghans were acting like a nation and were united was absolutely when they were in fight with some country. But right after withdrawal, the same destructive and chaotic forces revived and pushed the country to final stages of miseries and wretchedness. Will the same scenarios be repeated again? Does mean that NATO and U.S. tired of being murdered by Taliban-led militants who wish to die rather to live?

Before dealing with these questions, I want to tell you that the present Afghanistan is quite different technically, if not inherently, with previous one. The international community is not in war with Afghans, for the God's sake. They are fighting with insurgency or rebellions who supporting the global terror network. The ongoing war is also not against a particular ethnic and lingual force in Afghanistan. What has been the source of challenges in the history for establishment of a sovereign power were ethnic, religious and lingual divisions. Supporting one and weakening the others is an old traditional political game played by some countries in Afghanistan. What such a measure can yield is destruction and violence. Because the very basis of such policies is based on complete elimination of the oppositions, which in modern times have not been realized and also brought no solutions except mere weakening of both to edge of absolute collapse.  

I do not reject the ethnic and lingual combinations of the country are still the main sources of controversies within the government and clashes beyond the officials' circles. What I am trying to tell is that the current policies of US and NATO are not based on the policy of divide and rule. The Kabul government is combination of all ethnic groups and comparatively the power is also justly divided among them. However, the government suffers badly, but it has become a relatively the symptom of a national government.  Thus, US is not ruling Afghanistan what somebody claims to leave it.

She is indeed helping it to base a stronger foundation for a national government in order to lessen the revival of past repetitive chaotic forces to rule again. Thus, Afghans are not actually willing that international community leave it as soon as there is no insurance for future stability. Private independent Medias which have been incrementally increased during post-Taliban era and which deemed as voice of people, along with officials agree on long-term partnership with the U.S. Thus, what we know from a terms, Afghans, have no problem with presence of foreign forces in order to protect them. And it is baseless to voice out that Afghans are inherently desiring and demanding that currently involved forces to leave the country.

Secondly, maybe Kabul foreign allies are not willing to stay anymore, whatever is the reason behind. It be due to huge sacrifices they made and tired of fighting with militants or due to facing mounting domestic pressures in their own countries. But, meanwhile, I do not like to call the military withdrawal as sign of military failure. Remarkable things have been achieved and there is no need of further military sacrifices for NATO member nations and US. Perhaps there further military involvement may prove counterproductive as it would inject similar feelings as occurred during Soviet invasion, which, of course, strengthen the front of insurgency.

Thus, gradual military withdrawal is not that bad. What the international should do is forgetting Afghanistan as they did right after Soviet withdrawal. They have to keep pressuring countries who playing games that the result is destructive for Kabul as well as for the rest of the world and instantly alarm Afghan officials about aversion from general democratic guidelines.
In addition, strategic and diplomatic support should be never marginalized. Since 2001, each militarily involved country has been spending millions of dollars in the country. If all just today decide to leave the country to its previous ethnic and lingual rivalries, all expenses would go into wastage or into dust box of history, the thing which is not favorable for anyone except militants. The wise decision is to keep financial, strategic and diplomatic support of Kabul government in order to ensure that it will be changed again to a save heavens for global terror networks. With application of policy, it is extremely unlikely that the country will go on the same path as it did after soviet military withdrawal.

Jawad Rahmani is the permanent writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at outlookafghanistan@gmail.com

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