Afghanistan: A Different Perspective

afghanistan

The Afghanistan situation has produced an extensive collection of opinions and judgments from both the armchair world affair devotees, as well as the average folk who spend marginal time perusing the latest news but enjoy offering their “studied” feedback. And of course, from the many and assorted “experts.”

Personally, I rarely delve into any kind of intense study related to major world events. My practice is to read just enough to get a general idea of what’s going on but not enough to enter a debate. Thus, you’ll rarely find me offering any kind of “studied” opinion on the topic. 

I’ve adopted this formula related to the Afghanistan situation. I know what’s going on and have perused the several “for and against” perspectives. However, while I’ve formed somewhat of a personal opinion, I would not be comfortable presenting it for discussion.

Having said this, I came across a blog post on the topic that I found rather interesting. It was written by a person who recently started following my blog and appears to be from India. Thus, the post is written from a slightly different viewpoint than what many of us are used to seeing. 

Since my knowledge of the entire Afghanistan situation is fairly rudimentary, I don’t know if what this person has written is –or is not– accurate. Nevertheless, I found her perspective rather interesting and hope my readers will share their thoughts and observations.

You can find the blog post here. (Note that it was written before the August 31st deadline.)

14 thoughts on “Afghanistan: A Different Perspective

  1. Nan, though I’m pretty damn busy, I couldn’t resist. 😉 Here’s my comment over at Deepika’s blog-post:

    ——————————————————————

    Some way or the other American president Joe Biden is to be blamed for his hurry-burry , when he announced the withdrawal of troops he should have put forward certain conditions in front of Taliban, at least for the safeguard of common citizen of Afghanistan.

    Hi Deepika,

    With due respect Ma’am I think the above comment is shortsighted from an American point-of-view and does not equitably convey the FULL contextual history of the U.S. government’s involvement both in humanitarian and military operations in Afghanistan. As Aashwinshanker points out above(?) and below(?) in his comments, this 20-year conflict also covers four (4) different American federal Executive Administrations as well as four (4) different Congresses over the said timespan. Four significantly different Republican (George W. Bush) Party policies (versus D.J. Trump) and two slightly different Democrat Party policies—Barack Obama had a bipartisan, adversarial Congress to fight, especially in his last 2-yrs in office, and Joe Biden has a favorable (though slight) Congress in which to work with. All four Administrations and Congresses are all noticeably different. But one CANNOT focus entirely on current President Biden’s handling and management of the cards dealt to him, not to mention the card game he was forced to inherit after 3-4 VERY DIFFERENT Executive Administrations and Congresses.

    It has been my personal opinion since our shameful embarrassment in the Iran Hostage Crisis in 1979–1981 that as a whole, the U.S. doesn’t have any clue how to diplomatically deal with rogue Islamic tribes/nations of the Near or Middle East! History has proven over and over to us, the U.S., that we are essentially ignorant of their culture, socioreligious traditions, and foreign policies ever since the under-handed Sykes–Picot Agreement (1916) & Balfour Declaration (1917) that most Muslim-Islamic countries/cultures HATE the West, and for very good reasons I might add!

    Regarding both modern Iraq and Afghanistan which the U.S. foolishly invaded—Iraq was completely illegal by Pres. Bush on several levels—BOTH nations were always going to be a total waste of American resources… in taxpayer dollars, time spent, and human military lives wasted/sacrificed. Not to mention the thousands upon thousands of American military families who lost loved ones there, but also the cost in mental-health, PTSD and maimed soldiers, and cost of rehabilitation of those soldiers and families! I guarantee you, President George W. Bush never ONCE considered these long-term detrimental costs when crazed American citizens (vigilantes?) demanded revenge, retribution, etc, for 9/11. And Bush, being a Republican sabre-beater anyway—like most in his political party—appeased angry, blood-thirsty Americans… despite how haphazardly their emotions blinded their wiser, better judgement.

    Therefore, it is judicious to remember the historical conditions and circumstances that first allowed 9/11 to become a vision, then plan by Al-Qaeda then carried out to deadly fruition and reality. This cultural-religious hatred by many radical Islamic groups can be traced back to at least 1916 and how the Western Imperial Powers betrayed the Arabs in World War I and then those same Western Powers today have continued to deal the Near and Middle East and Arab countries (oil, etc.) bad hands, and still look down upon them as inferior. What the U.S. and many Western Allied Powers have foolishly repeated since 1916 is our superiority-complex, and furthermore without admitting our many underhanded slaps nor even correcting our many exploitative double-crossing wrongs to them. And worse still the majority of narrow-minded Americans STILL look upon Muslims, Arabs, and foreign non-Christian peoples as inferior, evil, and untrustworthy, not deserving of common decency and respect, e.g. Abu Ghraib prison torture and abuses, to name one example. 😔

    In my humble opinion, I think it unfair to single out current President Joe Biden here.

    With the warmest regards, thank you Deepika. ❤️

    Liked by 8 people

      • Hah! Indeed. 😉 This assumes of course I have the presumed “time” to get on your wonderful blog Nan, and find those “pushed buttons.” Lol ❤️

        And naturally, as you well know, Western vs. Islamic relations (including with the U.S.) is my cup-o-tea, and those countries/tribes, cannot in my opinion, be had WITHOUT understanding the full context of when it all started and went bad, very very bad: 1916–1917. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

  2. You’re right, many of us armchair warriors failed to remember the stake India has in the conflict with them not wanting a civil war on their doorstep while their relations with Pakistan are so bad and a possibility that Pakistani militants may be in part a strong support of the Taliban. With interplay between all countries that border Afghanistan leading in different directions the region could still be volatile for a while to come.
    Hugs

    Liked by 4 people

  3. It seems that practically every perspective has been covered here and elsewhere except that of Afghan women and girls, who were given a taste of education and RELATIVE freedom for 20 years until the precipitous and poorly-planned American withdrawal. If I were them, I would feel like the title of an old Italian movie: SEDUCED AND ABANDONED (not only by the U.S., but by the failed Afghan government.

    Liked by 7 people

    • SEDUCED AND ABANDONED (not only by the U.S., but by the failed Afghan government.

      And let’s go ahead and throw in Great Britain’s miserable failed invasion then evacuation of some 16,000–16,500 regimental soldiers lost, but one surviving surgeon (William Brydon) escaped alive thru the Afghan Khyber Pass. If we’re precise, we could even go back to Alexander the Great’s diminished, tattered pseudo-Greek army too. But whose counting expendable lives there, right? 😉

      Afghanistan has for almost two centuries or more been the DEATH-TRAP of all invading armies. Period. When will the arrogant, ignorant West learn this lesson? 🤦‍♂️ Furthermore, what’s to really gain by owning or having a puppet-government there for any Western mega-power, particularly the U.S.?

      We never should’ve been there in the first place, not even after 9/11. That should’ve been a clandestine manhunt. No more, no less. Period.

      Liked by 4 people

    • So, as a good Cruise Missile Liberal…how many more trillions of dollars should we have spent? How many more decades? How many more villages bombed, soldiers killed, corrupt kleptocrats in the “Afghani Government (heh…was there really any such a thing) fattened? Especially given the millennia-old reality that wars of conquest rarely work and serve mostly as profit centers for the “defense” industry. Where outside of a few favored circles in Kabul was this “relative freedom” dominant? Given the evaporation of the “Afghani Government”, the obvious lack of deep support for said “government”, how do you see any outsiders FORCING the kind of change that you see as necessary?

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Hello Nan. What I have read agrees with most of what she posted, with the exception of the Pakistan / US relationship. The US had long ago figured out the double game played by Pakistan. The US / Pakistan relationship was pretty much destroyed by the Bin Laden raid in which the US was forced to operate in Pakistan without the Pakistani government’s knowledge or permission and we killed someone their military was protecting. So the idea the US we dependant on Pakistan for intel or anything else is not correct. Hugs

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I don’t like to come to the conversation so late, but personal stuff.

    I think the point of presenting the blog was exactly because it is another perspective. We have a problem in America, as a whole, in not being able to look at problems with the understanding that our is not the only or the best perspective.

    Afghanistan did not attack the USA. As far as I can tell, there was not an Afghan involved in the attack on 09/11/2001.

    From Wikipedia:
    The hijackers in the September 11 attacks were 19 men affiliated with the militant Islamist group al-Qaeda. They hailed from four countries; fifteen of them were citizens of Saudi Arabia, two were from the United Arab Emirates, one was from Lebanon, and one from Egypt.

    They were outlaws, representing no sovereign nation. They were outlaws of their proclaimed religion. We invaded the “graveyard of empires” as though we knew what we were doing. Al-Quaeda came after us in a couple of other places in the Middle East, but we didn’t go after the host nation. We invaded Afghanistan chasing an invisible enemy: A religious ideal. (All our greatest evils come from religion.) Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Ashcroft wanted a war bad enough to manufacture a reason. They refused to see any alternative ways to avenge ourselves of the Al-Queada strike. At that time I wanted blood, too. I took the bait.

    As I’m writing this, Chris Hayes is playing a clip of Rep. Barbara Lee (D. Ca.) in her plea to not go to war. I wish we had taken the time to debate her rather than to plunge in as though there was no tomorrow. Our white western superego would not hear it. Another opinion was disregarded. A black female counseling white males? That’s right up there with blasphemy. /s

    Liked by 2 people

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