September 2, 2021

Anarchy In AfPakistan

As the Taliban was advancing across Afghanistan, backed by Pakistan, President Biden advised President Ghani to lie about the threat of the onslaught to his government, telling him, "there is a need to project a different picture."

In the end, as in the beginning, Washington relied on perception management to prosecute its war on terror. 

But deception can only get you so far in war, even in the modern age of information warfare which NATO excels at. 

The last twenty years proved NATO is better at propaganda than actual fighting. 

In Libya, it successfully spread the lie about Gaddafi's forces raping women on viagara as part of a wider propaganda campaign to demonize and destabilize his regime. After Gaddafi's death Libya did not experience any kind of transition to a democracy. It remains in anarchy.

Wherever NATO has attacked it has replaced order with chaos.

It has armed Jihadist terrorists, massacred tens of thousands of innocent civilians, and spread lies about its successes, but it has failed to win any war it has started in the last two decades. Syria, Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan have all been disasters. 

Washington’s short-lived achievements in Afghanistan were not based in reality. Prior to its invasion in October 2001 it used the ISI as its eyes and ears in the country, and then was shocked to find itself fighting the ISI's own creation half-deaf and half-blind. 

Pakistan’s victory in Afghanistan has still not been acknowledged, neither by the world nor by Pakistan itself. But when the Soviet Union left Afghanistan defeated in 1989 Pakistan couldn't wait to take credit. 

An excerpt from, "Pakistan’s problematic victory in Afghanistan" by Bruce Riedel, August 24, 2021:

Islamist parties in Pakistan have celebrated the victory in Afghanistan. Undoubtedly the ISI is hailing the fall of Kabul as their humbling of a second superpower, but it is savvy enough to do its gloating in private.

Aside from Pakistan, the Arab monarchies, although publically reserved, are happy about the collapse of the U.S. project. Not only has a democracy in their region failed, but its replacement shares very similar views as them. 

India and Iran are the clear cut losers of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. Despite its anti-American stance, Iran had the most to gain from the U.S. succeeding in its nation building mission in Afghanistan. 

The U.S.-Iran rivalry has proven to be counter-productive for both sides in Afghanistan. 

If Washington and Tehran were allies there is no question that the U.S. war in Afghanistan would've had a greater chance at success. 

Afghanistan was ready for change. Its people, far from being xenophobic, as they're unfairly accused of, embraced the opportunity given to them to open to the outside world after decades of war and civil strife. 

A stable and democratic Afghanistan was not a fantasy. But America's reliance on Pakistan made it an impossible task.

Pakistan will regret what it wished for in Afghanistan. America can afford to sponsor terrorist groups to create chaos in the region since it can always pack up and leave. But Pakistan has to worry about the long-term threat to its domestic security if it continues to foolishly pursue that same policy.

Barry Buzan and Ole Wæver, authors of the 2003 book, "Regions and Powers: The Structure of International Security" wrote that Pakistan's intervention in Afghanistan will not serve its interests in the long run. An excerpt:

Neither Iran nor India has any interest in expanding into what might be called 'the Afpakistan area.' Both have more pressing concerns in other directions, and share a durable interest in containing the chaos without getting too involved in it. The long-term interests of both of these key players are in maintaining the back-to-back tradition of the security dynamics in the Gulf and South Asia. Here the Sunni-Shi'a split in Islam serves India well, by denying Pakistan the strategic depth of serving as the frontier of Islam against India. By committing itself to the Saudi-backed Sunni cause in Afghanistan, and by tolerating violence against its own Shi'a minority, Pakistan has made a strategic error of potentially the same gravity as that which lost it Bangladesh. Its key ally, Saudi Arabia, is itself a conspicuously weak state, with an anachronistic and inefficient ruling elite sustained only by huge oil revenues. Pakistan's heavy involvement in Afghanistan, and its alliance with Saudi Arabia for this purpose, might be thought to raise the prospect of breaking down the border between the South Asian and Middle Eastern complexes. But more likely is that it will further weaken Pakistan, and encourage all of the other neighbouring states to pursue containment. (Pg. 113).

The Pakistani occupation of Afghanistan has become a fact impossible to deny. Chris Alexander, former Canadian ambassador to Afghanistan, said in a recent tweet:

With Haqqani Network terrorists now in key positions, the new regime is truly a ‘veritable arm’ of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).

Pakistan’s unabashed military leaders are accountable for all of it.

Pakistan's generals won't give up their illegal reign over Afghanistan without trying their damndest to pacify it. The occupation of Bengal only ended in 1971 after Pakistan, with U.S. consent, committed an untold number of atrocities

Pakistan's racism against Bengalis was a key driver of that war, as noted by this New York Times article. They hold similar views of Afghans, believing them to be culturally inferior, which is why they're fine with the backward Taliban ruling in Kabul but not in Islamabad

Pakistan's double standard towards the Taliban is an unsustainable policy. It will be dragged into the chaos it has subjected its neighbour to for decades.

As terrorism inevitably proliferates under the new Taliban regime, outside powers, particularly the United States, will resort to bombing raids and drone strikes to exercise their influence over the region. 

The massacre of the Afghan family in response to the Kabul airport attack was not the last act of the U.S. occupation but a sign of things to come.