The United States wasted many opportunities to reconcile with the Taliban in the 20 year war, former State Department official Matthew Hoh told Sputnik. The situation in the US was not inevitable. If the governemnt had acted timely the exit from Afghanistan could have been made much safer and simpler.
On Tuesday, President Joe Biden said the US has evacuated a total of 70,700 Americans and Afghan special visa applicants since 14 August. Meanwhile, numerous Afghans who worked alongwith the US troops have also gathered at the ariport, desperate for exit.
Hoh, a former US marine captain who resigned from the State Department in 2009 in protest of the US war strategy in Afghanistan, said the sequence of events currently playing out was not inevitable but for American policy.
“What has occurred now was inevitable because the US framed this in terms of achieving victory. If you say, ‘we’re gonna win’, that causes defeat”, Hoh said. “They could have chosen not to pursue a victory policy – such as pushing to defeat the Taliban although they offered to surrender”. The logic to occupy Afghanistan was flawed.
America had no need to jump into a civil war in Afghanistan. Afghanistan was merely a transit for the Taliban “Afghanistan was not integral to the planning of 9/11. They were doing planning in places like Malaysia, Qatar, and the UAE”.
© AFP 2021 / MANPREET ROMANAIn this file photo US Marines from the 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade wait for helicopter transport as part of Operation Khanjar at Camp Dwyer in Helmand Province in Afghanistan on July 2, 2009.
America bought support by selling the ideas of women’s rights and inclusive government. And yet “An entire generation of Afghans were not able to get access to education. One-third of Afghan children are out of school. This narrative is repeated to generate and sustain support for the war”. Hoh stated that these wars had little interest with the 38 million people who were suffering.
Another way America betrayed the Afghans was helping the government victimise the pashtuns south and east.
“Have you ever seen a house of cards fall slowly? The military leadership and the government were completely corrupt. They were kept in place by the presence of foreign money. The whole thing unraveled”, he said. “There is something to it that Joe Biden influenced [the outcome] but he was not the primary/main cause”.
Hoh said there is a great deal of anger and feelings of betrayal among veterans. Their anger was directed at the lies and corruption of the war. Hoh described the scale of the corruption and theft going on in Afghanistan for the past two decades as a massive Ponzi scheme. He also said the occupation was “a huge war profiteering effort”.
The majority of Afghan’s live under $1 per day. The reason the Afghan militants gave up was because they did not want to fight for this government. A government which had welcomed the war as business investment. The banks made a great deal of money whereas the comman man suffered. The soldiers and police needed money to feed their families, to survive. During the war they weren’t paid for entire two months. And suddenly “the Taliban became a better option”.