Beyond the gloating over the U.S. failure to build a stable, democratic Afghanistan over the past 20 years, how does Moscow perceive the situation in Kabul? Mark Krutov, a correspondent with RFE/RL’s Russian Service, joins guest host Mike Eckel to discuss Moscow’s biggest concerns.
How will regional states respond to the Taliban’s victory in Afghanistan? The IISS research team offers their insights into how governments will be carefully recalibrating relationships after a tumultuous week for the region.
A failure to acknowledge that the legitimate, elected representatives of Afghanistan are no longer in control of territory or institutions, and to refuse to deal with those that are, will only make for further misery for a population which has already endured decades of violence and poverty.
The American defeat in Afghanistan will have a direct impact on Israel. Like the pseudo-government foisted by the Americans on Kabul, which, despite massive investment, proved a broken reed, the PA and its security mechanisms will collapse in time against its Islamist adversaries, notably Hamas. For all its overwhelming material and technological superiority, the IDF stands no chance of defeating Israel’s Islamist enemies unless its soldiers are driven by a relentless belief in the national cause.
Presenter: Sami Zeidan
Hassan Abbas – Former Pakistani government official and author of The Taliban Revival
June Teufel Dreyer – Professor at the University of Miami and specialist on Asia economy and security
Hashmat Moslih – Independent Afghan analyst
As planned, the American military occupation of Afghanistan is coming to an end.
The pull-out has been criticised as a major defeat.
But was the 20-year war a complete failure?
For years, the US military presence gave it an advantage over rivals in the region.
It also allowed civil and military contractors to make millions of dollars.
And the long war opened a window for mineral exploration, estimated to be worth billions.
So, if the war was so lucrative, could we see another one?
Moscow and Beijing do not seem alarmed by the Taliban’s takeover.
And they have already shown interest in supporting the future of Afghanistan.
So, what does this mean for the region?
A week after the Taliban’s lightning seizure of Kabul, growing numbers of people in the Afghan capital are facing a daily struggle to get by with their jobs gone, banks still shuttered and food prices soaring.
The thousands crowded outside the airport entry points and fighting for seats on flights out of Kabul have provided the starkest image of the turmoil in the city since the Western-backed government collapsed.
US President Joe Biden has pledged his “unwavering commitment” to get US citizens and at-risk Afghans out of Taliban-controlled Afghanistan but warned of hurdles ahead, including the threat of an attack from the ISIL-affiliated Islamic State in the Khorasan Province (ISKP).
In a briefing at the White House on Sunday, Biden said he has directed the US Department of State to contact Americans stranded in Afghanistan by phone, email and other means and that Washington had a plan to move them to the airport.
In his 2010 memoir Decision Points, former United States President George W Bush explained his rationale for the decision to invade Afghanistan in the following words:
“Afghanistan was the ultimate nation-building mission. We had liberated the country from a primitive dictatorship, and we had a moral obligation to leave behind something better. We also had a strategic interest in helping the Afghan people build a free society… because a democratic Afghanistan would be a hopeful alternative to the vision of the extremists.”