What is the future of Afghanistan after the victory of the Taliban?

 


The Taliban (Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan-IEA) has declared an end to the war after the Afghan capital, Kabul, came under control, saying a new government would be formed soon. 

Former President Hamid Karzai, Chairman of the Reconciliation Committee Dr. to lead the process of forming this government to the end. A committee comprising Abdullah Abdullah and former prime minister and Hezb-e-Islami leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar is working. 


Former President Ashraf Ghani, Vice President Amrullah Saleh, Foreign Minister Hanif Atmar and several other leaders of the outgoing administration have fled Kabul and taken refuge in neighboring countries. The United States and its NATO allies are trying to evacuate members of their respective diplomatic missions, civilians and Afghan partners in the wake of this unexpected fall in Kabul.



The question now is what the future holds for Afghanistan after 20 years of the collapse of the American-backed government and the Taliban's landslide victory. The United States has spent 2.26 trillion on the war in Afghanistan over the past 20 years, according to, a research report of Brown University.

 This is 105 times of the size of Afghanistan's current economy. The war killed 241,000 people, including 3,565 US and NATO troops (excluding suicides), 78,314 Afghan army and police personnel, 84,191 anti-Taliban and anti-government fighters and  71, 344 civilians citizens.



According to Biden's confession, they have not been able to raise much of the money in Afghanistan. Biden has also said that the United States will not send troops to any other country to take part in the civil war. But will the United States continue to play a passive role in Afghanistan's future? 


There is no reason to think so. There is no reason to think that what is happening or is about to happen after the withdrawal of American troops from Kabul, no matter how fast the fall of Kabul, is beyond American estimation. For which, Biden said, there has never been a better time for the withdrawal of American troops.

How far is the peace and normalization, what does the Taliban want?

Now the question is what is going to happen in Afghanistan. What kind of regime do the Taliban want to establish there? What are their short, medium or long term goals? And what will be the next move of Afghanistan's neighbors, especially China, Russia, Pakistan, Iran, and Turkey, who are talking about recognizing the Taliban-led government, expect from Afghanistan? 

And what role the United States and its allies in Europe and NATO, as well as India, can play in the new transformation of Afghanistan is a big question.



The short-term scenario in Afghanistan suggests that an inclusive government led by the Taliban will be established in Afghanistan very soon. 


US Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad is in Doha with a group of American diplomats for political talks with Taliban representatives and representatives of Ashraf Ghani's former government.


 According to the US government, what the Taliban need to do is try to form a government that is inclusive, respectful of human rights, that respects the right of girls to exercise their full potential.

This type of government does not look like the first government of the Taliban. Of the three people working for the interim government, two were top two in the previous government and a third was in normal life in Kabul during the previous government. 

Although they are not part of the Taliban, they are likely to be part of the new government. The statement from the Taliban leadership so far suggests that, first, they want to bring to Afghanistan a system of government that combines the past and example of Islamic rule with Afghan culture and traditions, reflecting the realities of Afghanistan's regional ethnicity.



There are two power structures in Afghanistan. One of them is the federal level. Another is the provincial level under which the district administration is serving. At the provincial level, the provincial governor will be appointed from the predominant ethnic group.


 In this appointment, his position in the region may be considered more important than his position in the Taliban or the IEA, and Taliban involvement may be considered second. Among them is the appointment of the Taliban's provincial governor and district chief.

According to the Taliban leadership, they are considering a system of governance to coordinate Caliph Hazrat Omar's administration with the existing Loya Jirga system (parliament) in Afghanistan and Iranian-style state governance and religious guidelines. 


In this system, 'Amirul Momenin' (The Emir of believers) will be the spiritual guide and head of the state under which the security agencies-judiciary will be. In addition, there may be a jirga or a parliamentary government with a president or prime minister of any identity. 


There will also be a High Council of Parliament to ensure proportional regional ethnic representation. There will be a balance between the powers of the central government and the governors. Instead of being as strict as before about religious discipline, citizens will have the opportunity to follow the religious discipline that they follow. There may be a combination of Afghan tradition and liberal Islamic views on women's education.



Forgiveness and generosity and their inclusiveness

One thing that has been particularly noticeable in the Taliban's fight for power this time around is that they are generous with forgiveness to the enemies. They have followed the principle of inclusive mentality and not deviating from the basics. Even after coming to power,  they are talking about following that policy. 


They will keep employees in all types of service providers in the state as they are and increase their salaries by 5 per cent to motivate them. Those members of the Afghan security forces who want to stay in the job will have to go through a three- to six-month motivational training. 


This will enable those who will prove their integrity and commitment to return to their jobs in the army or police force. And those among the Taliban militia or fighters who qualify for the military or the police in terms of age and other considerations will be included.


 In reality, it is difficult to say for sure what type of Taliban administration will be. However, the current level of leadership of the Taliban includes ethnic Pashtun Tajik Uzbek Hazara Turkmen representing all parties. This time they took part equally in the fight.

The Taliban have previous experience of running the state. However, the situation and context of 20 years ago is very different now. On the one hand, a war-torn country of 40 years, on the other hand, the long civil war and the fear of renewed proxy warfare by international powers and the impact of the global conflict between the major powers.


 The special effect of the Taliban leadership's recent actions in this regard is that they have sought to negotiate as much as possible about the involvement of international powers in Afghanistan. The United States has formal Taliban agreements with China and Russia.

Apart from this, the Taliban have reached a kind of agreement with other neighbors before taking power. One of the basic issues raised in these agreements is: No country outside Afghanistan will be allowed to use its territory for any kind of activity. 


And Afghanistan will not be associated with the internal affairs of any foreign country. Second, it would be open to economic investment, trade and other cooperation, in which only the national interest of Afghanistan would be paramount. 


Third, efforts will be made to advance Afghanistan economically through the establishment of good governance, eradication of corruption and equitable employment. 


Fourth, the Islamic economy and banking system will be followed internally and the international economic system, protection of human rights, etc. will be coordinated with global discipline.



The main challenge for the Taliban

As a state, Afghanistan has a number of strong diplomatic partners. These include the three major global powers America, China and Russia. These three parties have three different security concerns.


 The United States is concerned about extremist forces such as Al Qaeda and IS, which seek to harm American interests. An agreement has been reached with the United States to prevent such forces from indulging in Afghanistan.


 The U.S. government has not yet formally recognized the transfer of power in Kabul, and State Department officials have declined to say whether the United States has yet to recognize Ashraf Ghani as president of Afghanistan. 


The United States has said that future Afghan relations will depend on the actions of the Taliban. The Taliban government in Afghanistan will be recognized only if it respects women's rights and stays away from 'terrorists'.

China's main security concern is Xinjiang. Thirty-eight percent of Afghanistan's population is members of the same larger ethnic group and has similar religious beliefs. The United States has in the past used Afghan territory to support Chinese Uighurs. The Taliban are committed to ensuring that it is completely shut down.


 Russia's concern is with Central Asia and parts of its Caucasus. The majority of the population in the region is Sunni Muslim in terms of ethnicity and religious beliefs. Moscow wants to ensure that Afghanistan does not use any force in the region, which could be part of a US strategic operation. The Taliban are also committed to Moscow's security concerns.

The security concerns of two other important neighbors, Pakistan and Iran, are a complete cessation of use of Afghan soil for sabotage and separatist activities. Under the previous regime, Pakistan's main concern was the Afghan Front. 


From here, with the help of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the TTP and the Baloch rebels in Balochistan have carried out subversive activities. The Taliban government has promised not to give any such opportunity. And it has been ensured that the insurgent activities among the Iranian Baloch do not receive direct or indirect support from the Kabul government.

The Taliban have not yet reached a formal agreement with little bit far neighboring country, India. 

But the Taliban's message to Delhi is that they welcome India's role in Afghanistan's development. But at the same time, if India does not fuel any of Afghanistan's enemies in its efforts to destabilize the country, Afghanistan will not allow its soil to be used against India. The Taliban's relationship with India is reciprocal.



After taking power, the main challenge for the Taliban government in Afghanistan will be the diplomatic partners of all parties or foreign powers.To keep the promise made to him. 

To do this, they need to create an environment of tolerance and harmony among the internal ethnic groups. Issues of social resentment and conflict should be kept as far away as possible. 

The United States and a number of NATO members have been monitoring the situation in Afghanistan since then. Some have even threatened to blockade. The Taliban leadership must be strict in preventing any policy or situation such as imposing a blockade or proxy war. But it is true that they will not abandon the ideals and values ​​that have led the Taliban to victory in the 20-year hard war.

It is difficult to say what the nature of the Taliban-ruled government in Afghanistan might be, but it will be led by a new generation of Taliban leaders who have traveled extensively, seen the world and negotiated with many other governments.


 Anyone would expect that they learned a lot during their exile; They have no choice but to acknowledge the reality of non-Muslim forces living in an international environment.

Geopolitical settlement

Analyst Graham E. Fuller thinks that the policy that Washington has adopted in Afghanistan is driven by completely unrealistic ambitions and weak policy implementation. 

For this reason the present consequences have long been inevitable. The neo-imperialist and neo-conservatives argued that the American withdrawal and subsequent fall of the Kabul government would deeply undermine American "credibility" as a world power. 

An underlying ideology of this approach is that the United States must act as a global police force everywhere, and failure to do so is a sign of weakness and decline.

It is true, however, that the decline of America as a whole is a symbol of its deep weakness both domestically and geopolitically; There is a growing international perception that the United States is living in a fantasy bubble of denial of maintaining its global dominance. If the 20-year US military presence in Afghanistan is actually moving toward a specific goal, that is one thing.

At the humanitarian level, it is important to know what fate the Afghans will face under the new Taliban government. The Afghan people have been the victims of constant war and military intervention since 1978.

 It ranged from an internal uprising by Afghan communists to a Soviet invasion, a subsequent fight to oust the Soviets by a US-backed mujahideen group, a civil war between the mujahideen, and the formation of a government by the Taliban to restore national order.

In fact, Washington's focus on Afghanistan was seldom involved in establishing a better and more just society for Afghans. There has been talk of an American invasion to destroy al Qaeda's presence in Afghanistan. But the deeper and deeper reason for the American invasion and long occupation was to create a military and geopolitical presence in Central Asia on the border of Russia and China.


 That ambition was never expressed nakedly but all the regional powers clearly understood it. The ‘nation-building and humanitarian’ aspects of American occupation were essentially window dressings to conceal Washington’s geopolitical ambitions. Those aspirations between the American neoconservatives and the liberal interventionists are not yet completely dead.



Like it or not, a key feature of potential ‘post-American geopolitics’ would be a return to historically normal where multiple players are employed worldwide. And in this case, multiple players will have the biggest impact on Afghanistan's future. 


The reality is that the three countries that the United States considers enemies, Iran, Russia, and China, all share the same main goal for the future of Afghanistan with Washington: stability, bloodshed, and an end to ideal exports. 

But all three countries are united in their strong opposition to American intervention and domination in Afghanistan and Central Asia.

In the past, the Taliban may have thought very little about the attitude of these neighboring countries, but today Central Asia is a different place. Afghanistan has collapsed and whatever the Taliban's social policy, they must bring their country back to minimum prosperity and peace.


 China has the greatest political and economic advantage, especially in helping Afghanistan in the future. Afghanistan can rebuild itself by being economically linked to China's ambitious Belt and Road initiative in Central Asia. 


China will make every effort to maintain the stability of the Taliban and prevent any spread of their movement, which not only greatly affects China in Xinjiang, but also the security of Russia and Shia Iran in the Caucasus and Central Asia.

Neither Iran, China, nor Russia wants to see the United States established militarily in its own backyard, in the heart of Central Asia. Once US military influence is removed from Central Asia, a prosperous and stable Afghanistan can come in the interests of all.

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