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Editorial; 16 years of America’s war

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America’s longest war has entered its 6000th day but victory has eluded them, as Afghanistan continues to be in a whirl of fettered frenzy of terrorists. American war has been a wild good chase as the detested militant Taliban are devouring it with their vile tactics, steering the country towards a drastic downtrend. The US embarked upon a massive campaign in 2001 to topple the Taliban regime and al-Qaeda; but Americans have faltered in wiping out the menace of Taliban ever since. The Taliban have yet has been plaguing the country like a disease without panacea, and made it so intricate and intriguing for the West – the protagonists of this ghastly war – to annihilate the pillars of terrorism which marches on unabated in developing countries. This pseudo war is taking lives of hundreds. The spiraling chaos in these countries raise the quintessential question of whether terrorism is unconquerable or peace would ever prevail.

It’s not as if the war’s end is in sight. Besides a lapse in security strategies, the US has no clear political, governance, or economic strategy to produce Afghan stability. Lethal violence has become so endemic it is barely reported. Moreover, a bold plan to draw the Taliban into a binding peace process looks like a last-ditch effort by Afghanistan’s president, to end one of the world’s most intractable wars His initiative may have come just in time. That offer follows a sharp escalation in the number of Taliban attacks.

According to UN figures, a rise in the number of undiscriminating attacks last year resulted in more than 10,000 civilian casualties as more than 3,438 people were killed and 7,015 injured. These chilling figures alone cannot capture the appalling human suffering inflicted on ordinary people, especially women and children in Afghanistan.

The US as a superpower has to maintain balance in the world by suppressing extremism which threatens security of other countries, in particular where it has military bases such as in Afghanistan. But after the US enters a country under any excuse – be it to institutionalize democracy in dictator regimes or to intervene in an internecine conflict – the occupied land becomes at times largely infested with the phenomena of terrorism and flare-up of ambitious yet notorious fighters and an increasingly downgraded rule of law. Afghanistan, Iraq and some ‘Arab Spring’ countries very well experienced it.