Does Afghanistan have a future?

By | August 22, 2022

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Since the #Taliban’s reconquest, #Afghanistan has formed the eye of a brewing geopolitical storm. Regional powers are pressing for influence.

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On august 15 2021 the islamic republic Of afghanistan collapsed at the cost of 2.3 trillion dollars and roughly 200 000 Lives the 20-year intervention ended in A humiliating defeat for the united States Upon seeing the taliban advance afghan Troops surrendered often without Fighting meanwhile president ashraf hani Fled kabul mere days after stating he Would rather die than leave when the Dust settled the taliban’s victory was Indisputable For many that is where the story ended And following the invasion of ukraine Press coverage dried up but history does Not cease when the cameras stop rolling Since the taliban’s reconquest Afghanistan has formed the eye of a Brewing geo-political storm economic Disasters have brought starvation Regional powers are pressing for Influence and central asia has been Flooded with illicit goods Nearly one year on it is high time to Ask what happened to afghanistan and What does its future look like [Music] Today’s video is sponsored by Established titles which allows you to Buy 1 to 10 square feet of land in Eddleston scotland this plot of land Just south of edinburgh i own that now Technically that makes me a lord you see

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Corruption undermined the government’s Legitimacy while in the short term Drought and covet 19 crippled the Country’s food security and health care Capabilities a situation exacerbated by The taliban’s summer offensive which had Internally displaced more than 3 million People The taliban thus inherited a state beset With problems even worse washington’s Nation building had constructed a state Dependent on foreign aid international Donors financed over half of kabul’s six Billion dollar state budget and four Fifths of its social spending upon the Takeover this support was pulled Overnight the only potential respite was To draw on the central bank’s cash Reserves which had grown to nearly 10 Billion dollars during the occupation Yet this presented a problem of these Funds 70 were and still are held at the Federal reserve building in downtown new York Since 2002 washington’s designation of The taliban as a global terrorist group Has barred from america’s banking system And anyone who transacts with it given The united states is the global Financial hub such measures are akin to An economic death sentence Thus Once the taliban assumed control International trade halted as the risk

Of secondary sanctions deterred Commercial entities Another devastating blow came in February 2022 due to a potential civil Claim by 9 11 victims and insurance Companies by then issued an executive Order freezing all afghan central bank Assets on american soil half of the 7 Billion dollars would be set aside for The potential claim The other half would be held in trust For the afghan people and even though Washington has stated it will release The funds biden’s decision is unusual For many reasons in particular the Connection between the claimants and the Central bank is unclear as there are Degrees of separation between them first It was al-qaeda that committed the 9 11 Attacks and the taliban’s complicity is Yet to be established second the afghan Central bank is independent from both The state apparatus and the taliban and Third the money deposited in the bank Belongs to ordinary afghans who were Friendly to the old non-taliban Government so in essence the 9 11 Victims are suing ordinary citizens for Their loss Still worse freezing bank assets has Deprived the afghan economy of nearly All liquidity the economy is at a Standstill the afghani currency has Collapsed workers and teachers go unpaid

And inflation has accelerated according To the un 97 of afghans will be Impoverished by the end of 2022 While according to the imf the afghan Gdp will contract by one third a crash Worse than the great depression Combined with a global weave shortage 23 Million afghans are now at risk of Starvation foreign aid has softened These effects but without a functioning Economy the threat of famine remains Constant Over time washington’s policy could Backfire while many blame the taliban For afghanistan’s backslide citizens of Sanctioned nations tend to blame the Sanctioner not the wrong government the U.n security council’s comprehensive Sanctions on iraq in the 1990s Caused thousands of famine deaths Especially among children those who Survived were often radicalized against The west joining jihadist groups like Isis Similar developments are possible in Afghanistan for instance in june 2022 Earthquakes killed around 1100 afghans Relatives living abroad could not send Aid back home due to sanctions This despair has driven a rapid uptick In opioid addiction among afghans and Such events could eventually drive the Impoverished to take up arms Meanwhile afghanistan’s neighbors have

Their own concerns though the taliban Has attempted to project a more moderate Image internationally its extremist Convictions are undeniable in addition To repression of women and extra Judicial killings kabul recently Published a manifesto pledging itself to Theocratic governance Even so moving forward the Neighborhood’s long-term interests are Best served by diplomatic recognition And cooperation For pakistan the relationship is complex Though islamabad helped the taliban the Group’s pashtun makeup has long been a Source of tension the durant line a 2600 Kilometer border drawn by the british Empire through pashtun communities is Rejected by the taliban earlier this Year after the group attacked pakistani Nationals constructing a border fence Islamabad retaliated with air strikes Killing 50 taliban and their pakistani Associates Much will depend on the future of the Deposed former prime minister imran khan As a leader khan sought conciliation With the taliban congratulating them on Battlefield victories and inviting them To join the china-pakistan economic Corridor the government that replaced Him has taken a harder line as evidenced By the heavy-handed border policy Nevertheless imran khan’s recent

Successes in regional elections Suggest he may be poised for a political Comeback should he return to office a Diplomatic reset could be on the cards Either way the pakistan taliban Honeymoon is over and diplomatic Negotiation will set the terms for Political affairs For its part china has softened its line Towards kaabul Beijing initially feared a taliban Resurgence could fuel islamic separatism In neighboring xinjiang but after Securing taliban cooperation on border Security its fears have eased since then China has increased aid to afghanistan In an attempt to court kabul mineral Exploitation is an especially enticing Prospect and negotiations are currently Ongoing between chinese state-owned Mining enterprises and the taliban Meanwhile russia is also edging towards Recognition and its central asian Partners are generally on board the main Holdout is tajikistan due to Reservations over border security and The treatment of afghan tajiks dushambe Has also sought cooperation with Washington in border security and Sheltering afghan exiles thus central Asia’s afghanistan policy is still far From settled but the oddest Reapproachment is perhaps that of iran Where mutual antagonism towards

Washington is a shared bond the taliban Recently agreed to purchase 350 000 tons Of oil from its neighbor there are also Signs that shia afghans have been Promoted to official posts which is a Progressive step by the standards of a Sunni theocracy such measures are Necessary to secure tehran’s support and Cooperation Meanwhile qatar is acting as Washington’s eyes and airs doha now runs Flights to kabul and helps manage the Airport through gutter washington seeks To engage the taliban’s moderate Elements Currently though the hagani network a Semi-autonomous hardline block within The taliban holds sway in the country so Any truce between washington and kabul Is still far off but even without Diplomatic recognition international Cooperation is needed to manage Transnational issues the dissolution of The afghan security forces flooded Central asia with illicit weapons worth An estimated 7 billion dollars likewise The taliban claims it has secured more Than 300 000 light arms 26 000 heavy Weapons and 61 000 military vehicles From their vanquished foes however Poverty has forced many former afghan Troops to sell their service weapons on Illicit markets American-made gear and weapons are

Turning up in kashmir and indian forces Are concerned that these weapons will be Turned against them by jihadists Provoked by the modi government’s hindu Nationalist agenda Meanwhile the mining sector has also Grown though slowing to a trickle during The taliban’s 2021 offensive mineral Extraction is accelerating indonesia’s Early 2022 ban on coal exports drove Pakistan to engage the taliban who were Willing to sell minerals well below Market price Though jakarta has since relaxed Restrictions international supply Concerns are throwing kabul an economic Lifeline Mining also holds implications for the Country’s internal power dynamics Afghanistan boasts substantial reserves Of copper lithium and rare earth Elements Interior minister sirajurdeen hagani Leader of the powerful hagani network is Looking to monopolize the mining sector To strengthen his influence within the Taliban In afghanistan the mining industry is Treated as a political football rather Than an engine for economic development The struggle for control gives way to Factionalism corruption and conflict If hagani appropriates the mining sector For himself an inter taliban schism is

Likely the resulting chaos would only Deter potential investors from seeking a Stable climate in which to invest Handshake deals are insufficient when it Comes to mining prospects and long-term Fixed capital investments what is needed Is a state monopoly on violence and Preferably an effective rule of law Afghanistan has neither For now the supreme illicit trade Remains the opium poppy of which Afghanistan accounts for four-fifths of Global production Here the taliban’s fundamentalist Convictions have proven flexible despite Previously banning the practice as an Insurgency the group tolerated and taxed Poppy cultivation and though washington Spent 8.5 billion dollars to eradicate The trade by 2017 farmers were recording Bumper crops accounting for around a Third of the afghan gdp The thing is since 2017 solar-powered Pumps have allowed farmers to irrigate Crops using underground aquifers Greening 220 000 hectares of desert in The process This helped afghans keep subsistence Farms on the side and though the taliban Has banned poppy cultivation in 2022 Enforcement has been lacks due to the Country’s economic woes These factors could cement afghanistan As a narco state accordingly regional

Powers along the old silk road may seek To leverage their positions as a gateway To europe iran and turkey would gain a Valuable bargaining chip with the west By either tightening or loosening Counter narcotics efforts especially Turkey which also has direct control Over the kabul airport the opportunities For geopolitical brakemanship could be As diverse as human errancy itself all In all the future of afghanistan has not Been written but the first draft leaves A lot to be desired whether one likes it Or not the taliban are not going Anywhere and this elementary fact must Be acknowledged before any progress can Occur 40 years of conflict has devastated Afghanistan and since people prefer the Security of being the robber and not the Robbed institutionalized criminality Will likely remain yet there are still Choices washington could use its Substantial leverage to extract Reasonable concessions from the taliban In exchange for releasing funds and Humanitarian aid otherwise the country Risks falling into the abyss Whatever happens the circumstances leave The international community with the Profound sense of unease and yet it’s a Situation that will essentially be Tolerated for when the starving go on Hunger strike few will notice

I’ve been your host siobhan from caspian Report special thanks to enter merle for Helping in researching and writing this Topic and if you want to show some Support just leave a like comment and Share this video thank you for watching And sago [Music] You

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