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Used by US to break Soviet Empire once, Talibans now 'backed' by Russia against US

By Haider Abbas* 

The Afghan-Taliban (AT) had been camping around 40 kms to Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan since from quite sometime. But, now AT is gaining its foothold to almost the border of Kabul. AT is now engaged into fighting right at the gateway of Kabul. 
In the last few months AT seem to have seized the districts of Nerkh and Jalraiz in the province of Wardak, which is just 40 km from Kabul. AT also has captured Burka in Northern Baghlan province earlier this month after Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani government troops had withdrawn from the area.
What now seems is the final countdown to the Ashraf Ghani government as AT have entered the Daulat Shah district of Laghman province as the final withdrawal of the last remaining around 2,500 US and roughly 7000 NATO troops has begun from May 1. The complete pullout is to happen before Sep 11, 2021 to bring to an end the America’s forever war. One now sees AT capturing large parts of Laghman with Ghani forces abandoning the area.
The AT spokesperson informed that AT has seized ‘two tanks, a military vehicle, and “lots of weapons and ammunition” after Afghan police and soldiers “fled” the area’. The fleeing of government forces is definitely to take a toll on the morale of the Afghan government forces as those assigned with a task to counter AT have deserted the fight.
If this abandonment from Afghan forces is set to continue then surely Ashraf Ghani government is likely to lose confidence of its own security apparatus, and for sure, Ghani’s life is to be further put-to-danger. It is therefore expected that very soon the Afghan scenario is set to enter into its last phase as no sooner AT are to hit the Kabul streets the bloody war is to ensue. Kabul is the last stronghold of Afghan government as now more than 90% of Afghanistan is under AT control.
After Daulat Shah falling AT are now knocking on the doors of Kabul. No wonder some time later any researcher might unveil that AT were being permanently ‘informed’ by the ‘inside sources’ of Kabul to help the Kabul Presidential Palace have a fall. Perhaps, no bigger news is just waiting to happen.
US is now in a scramble. Its defeat in Afghanistan was inevitable as Russia and now China were helping AT to blunt US teeth. Politics is mating of strange bedfellows. It was once US which used Taliban to break the Soviet Empire and now Russia is supporting Taliban against US! 
US Secretary of Defense, General Lloyd Austin, according to US Department of Defense on May 24, called Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa for ‘help’ though officially the press-release said. ‘Secretary Austin and General Bajwa discussed regional dynamics and shared interest in security and stability in the region’.
The objective, as can be understood was to have sought pressure from Pakistan on AT but Pakistan at this juncture does not seem to ‘give-into’. US as its last effort to help make Ashraf Ghani to ‘stay remain’ wanted AT to conform to Constitution of Afghanistan and accede to formation of government through democracy but AT throughout had been a reluctant customer as AT always insisted on Shariah to be the ‘rule of state’.
Meanwhile, it is leant that Australia, a very strong ally of US in probably all of its wars, has decided to shut its embassy in Afghanistan, in the wake of "an increasingly uncertain security environment". Its troops over the years had been considerably reduced from 1,500 to mere 80. 
It is a widely known fact that AT considers those Afghan nationals who have worked for or with foreign governments as traitors and no wonder the Afghans say that they have been abandoned (to) face retribution from Taliban, reported "The Guardian" on May 25.
But, surely, the AT entry into Kabul is not to be a cake-walk as tanks, helicopters and an entire military paraphernalia would be in place ‘ready for assault’ . Yet, the psychological war is in favour of AT as the government forces know it well that over 90% of the land is now under AT and that the US presence is also a matter of time. 
There are visibly now three possibilities. The first Ashraf Ghani might flee, the second a bloodshed in Kabul or the third that the government forces might hand-over Ashraf Ghani to AT. Any of this breaking news is very likely to come in a few days!
It may also be considered that AT are also not set for a jolly-ride, even if it is a post-Ashraf time as the ghost of ISIS has entered Afghanistan and AT are against it. AT have been assured China’s economic help in lieu of a peaceful Afghanistan. China has made its intentions clear to carry its CPEC project to Afghanistan to reach to Central Asia.
For China Asharf Ghani, or Abdullah Abdullah or AT may be as good as long as there is peace. It is for this sake, Qamar Javed Bajwa visited Kabul on May 10. China stands firmly by Pakistan which has made Pakistan to bid almost a ‘bye-bye’ to US as Pakistan has refused to provide its bases to US as Pakistan wants US to leave at the earliest.
Pakistan in fact is now also gravitating towards Russia and India has abandoned Russia for US. India is gearing up to join QUAD and particularly after BECA with US India is now to be a formidable US ally for some decades to come. India invested heavily with non-AT governments in Afghanistan for the sole purpose to keep AT away from Kashmir, which India has now assimilated further into after August 5, 2019, when PM Narendra Modi abrogated Article 370 which gave special status to J&K, something which prompted China and Pakistan to carry the issue to UNSC for thrice in one year. 
 ---
*Former State Information Commissioner, UP, political analyst

Comments

Afghan expert said…
I was appalled to read the Afghanistan article by Hassan Abbas.
The fellow does not have an idea of the country's geography. Laghman, for instance, is not on the periphery of Kabul.
The fellow has picked up some news points from here and there and just cooked up an incoherent narrative. The language is very faulty from start to finish.
Afghanistan is pretty much a specialist subject. In my humble view, those without credentials should not be given the hospitality of your platform on any subject. And since Counterview comes out in English, a writer such as this rules himself out.

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