That of the Taliban in Afghanistan was not a takeover, but a real coup that in one stroke violated the Afghan flag and legitimized the Islamic Emirate. This, however, was foreseen in the embarrassing Doha agreements signed by Trump – The Middle East is now in danger of becoming a powder keg, but it is to be hoped that the upcoming G20 led by Draghi will play a key role in the very complicated geopolitical picture.
There is no doubt that there are more than 2000 billion reasons for the USA (the cost of the war in Afghanistan exceeds 2300 billion US dollars!), in closing the game in Afghanistan, but the reality is very different from what were the prospects set by the agreement signed in Doha. All that is left for the United States is to freeze the Afghan Government’s reserves held in the United States, followed by the International Monetary Fund, not allowing them access to a ” loot” that would guarantee long life to their Emirate and, above all, the possibility of carrying out a mission which, behind the ideology, hides only a lust for territory and economic resources on which to draw to finance the militias. We must also keep in mind that according to a United Nations report confirmed by Fitch, the rating house, the earnings of the Taliban are around 1.6 billion dollars per year. Thus, the extraordinary G20 led by Italy now assumes a fundamental role in the geopolitical framework.
Repetita non juvant… the devil in the details of the peace agreement for Afghanistan!
Let’s look at the latest piece that has shattered any illusions about a pacification of Afghanistan and exposed a diplomatic disaster on the part of the US and a geopolitical chaos that casts an unstable shadow over the Middle East as we reported last week.
After 20 years, the agreement “to bring peace to Afghanistan” signed in Doha sees the same incipit repeated dozens of times, in the title and with reference to the clauses of the agreement: “… the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan which is not recognized by the United States as a state and is known as the Taliban”, and this could appear as in every “contract” one of the two parties to the agreement is identified: the Taliban on one side and the United States of America on the other. So not the government or the state of Afghanistan, but the USA. Afghanistan as an entity is named as central in the fourth part of the agreement concerning intra-Afghan dialogue and negotiations, through which the stages of the political Road Map for the country were to be outlined. So, the Islamic Emirate was not born now after the coup, it was already in the cards in clear letters!
In reality, we have witnessed a coup, not a “takeover” by the Taliban, who have given flag, territory and legitimacy to their Islamic Emirate in one fell swoop, wiping out the name of the State and the flag of Afghanistan, just as Lukashenko did in Belarus or Chavez did in Venezuela, and with unprecedented violence against the local population.
The resistance in the province of Baghlan and the successes of the Northern alliance, even if they are little in the general picture, redeem the flight of an army that, not receiving salaries and provisions for months and given the level of poverty in which the Country lives, has deserted, failing in its oath and commitment to defend the Country, also due to the threats of the Taliban not to spare anyone.
The interest of the Taliban goes to the armaments, equipment and structures left ‘in dowry’ by the Americans and the reorganization of the political and military structure of the Emirate is already underway. With more than 85 thousand men to support financially to hold the territory in their hands, the Taliban cannot afford past errors and here is the explanation for the diplomatic tones to keep the Chinese and Russians at arm’s length, because they are future possible financiers of the reconstruction. Pakistan will assume a very different role.
In order to emerge from years of ambiguity in its relationship with the US, Pakistan should give support and substance to the new ‘Taliban diplomacy’ after allowing the maintenance of cross-border links with the Taliban themselves. The truth is that the intelligence and a large part of the Pakistani military support the Afghan Taliban and the first declarations of Pakistani Prime Minister Khan hint at a readiness to legitimize the Islamic Emirate in an anti-American key. However, Khan has not reckoned with the lack of gratitude of the leader Baradar, who has freed from Afghan prisons the exponents of the most dangerous Pakistani Taliban group (TTP) directly linked to Al Qaeda, further complicating Pakistan’s position, always in search of an internal political balance between institutions and local terrorist movements and thus partially violating the Doha Agreement.
One wonders how it is possible that the above-mentioned 2,300 billion dollars have not been sufficient to rebuild, at least in part, the infrastructures of a country as large as Spain in 20 years, and also how it is that the warning launched by the courageous exponents of the secular Hambastaghi (Solidarity) party on the trafficking of the Taliban in the more distant provinces, which has allowed them, between taxes and drug trafficking, to reorganize the militia in the last five years, without Pakistan and other neighboring countries understanding the danger, has fallen on deaf ears.
In the meantime, Biden’s approval rating is dangerously close to the psychological threshold of 50%, and after the worsening of the situation in Kabul, by the end of the month it will fall below this threshold, making the management of domestic politics more complicated for him at a crucial time for completing the legislative process for the infrastructure plan.
The breaking news that Erdogan and Putin have agreed to set up a coordination table for dialogue with the Taliban is not very reassuring, especially in view of the reactions of various terrorist movements from the Middle East to Central Asia and Africa.
Let us remember that last June, the leaders of Hamas visited Lebanon to meet with the leader of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, to create a pro-Iranian front to oppose the Abrahamic Pact (signed by the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, Israel, and the United States). If we add to this the applause that the Taliban have received, not only from themselves, but also transversally from various jihadist groups, from the Somali militias of Al Shabaab to the Syrian Group HTS (Hayat Tahrir al-Sham), up to the Muslim Brotherhood in Pakistan and other African Countries, the Middle East risks becoming a powder keg.
It is to be hoped that the extraordinary G20 will maintain an inflexible stance on the Afghan Taliban to stem a possible terrorist spiral and agree on a common policy that takes account of the changes taking place in the Middle East, not allowing any legitimacy to the Islamic Emirate given the open violation of human rights perpetrated above all on women and young people as well as on all the country’s social and political institutions.