Fearing Challenges Await Afghanistan

In fact, the most positive news in 2014 for Afghan nation was the political front with a landmark power-sharing agreement between Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani in September to create a government of national unity. This represents the first democratic transfer of power in the history of Afghan people and also marked the end of the post-9/11 Hamid Karzai’s leading period. The agreement between Ashraf Gani and Abdullah Abdullah who has been given an effectively major ministerial role, followed a challenging, perhaps a controversial election between them, in late June, 2014.
However, since their agreement, three months have passed by, yet there are still ifs and buts in forming the new cabinet, breaking his own deadlines three times and failing to make a single permanent appointment except that of his national security adviser and many more have been dismissed. Three months after his inauguration, the economic growth is near zero due to the reduction of the international military, aid shortfalls and security challenges remained impressive.
They are too vulnerable against their promises, made to the people during their campaigns. They are too busy in fighting for power sharing in forming the new cabinet, forget to realize that our security forces suffer sovereignty and the nation is bleeding due to rise of day to day violence and the country needs a cabinet. Ensuring smooth functioning of the power arrangement between Ghani and Abdullah and countering the Taliban threat still remained the key challenges. Taliban still rock the capital, Kabul and other major cities and towns with their high profile terror attacks. The new government has completely failed to bring any reasonable changes since past three months, expect the rise of bomb lasts.
Now, the withdrawal of the U.S-led troops from the country at this fragile point of time has created another big tension because the Afghan National Security Forces remained vulnerable against Taliban’s tactical attacks. Only advising and other short-term assistance will not respond to the current and future challenges. There is frustration going on based on the capability of the new government and level of violence in the country that once the state falls in civil war.
There have been persistent claims when the war on terror was launched in Afghanistan that the Taliban would not survive against our power. The United States Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Nov. 6, 2001 claimed that the Taliban and Al-Qaeda would not survive more than a year. They would be eliminated before the deadline. Yet, they have fought a resilient insurgency against NATO and Afghan forces for 13 years, with violence now at record levels countrywide and call the U.S-led war withdrawal from Afghanistan a clear indication of their defeat and disappointment. Their statements come when the Taliban are in great rise and gaining grounds, starting from Northeastern parts of the country to the capital, Kabul.
Given the facts, the situation is turning more grim as the government is too busy over forming the cabinet and the U.S-led war against Taliban and Al-Qaeda formally ended. One of main crisis is the worsening security situation that put the whole nation into grave concerns. As result, the nation has mixed feelings about the drawdown of foreign troops and its aftermath. Many believe that the Taliban and Al-Alqaeda whose power was once underestimated by the U.S think-tanks have finally defeated the world’s most powerful states over their mission in Afghanistan. For the time being, their steady confront against U.S-led war has changed the prospects of U.S’s political dialogue toward Afghanistan.
Observing the ground realities, the question is, how the Afghan nation will overcome the upcoming devastating challenges with its only 350,000 less capable police and military forces in the absence of foreign troops and incompetent funding, including broken equipments when the most powerful nations could not defeat them? Yet, the Taliban call it the end of the beginning.
It means that the next year can be a very difficult period with heavy challenges for Ashraf Ghani’s government. Since 2001, the fast-growing economy has become steadily more dependent on foreign aid. There has been already a fall-off in overall foreign aid levels, following the draw-down of international troops. Their presence in the battlefield was not only ensuring good security situation but also provided a security umbrella under which some of the aid agencies have operated in recent years. There has been only very limited success in economic diversification since 2001. The concern is, the economy becomes increasingly dependent upon drug exports, such as opium and heroin as aid is reduced.
The government needs to change their focus from cabinet a little to other paralyzing crisis too. President Ghani needs to respond to the questions of the people and bring little order to the security challenges and economic devastation. In order to overcome the upcoming challenges, Ghani’s security forces and government officials will need to focus on overcoming corruption, poverty, radicalization, illiteracy and the money brought by the need to grow illegal drugs in regions must be tackled to demolish the funding resources of Taliban, where there is much economic alternative.
Thus, Ashraf Ghani himself needs to assert his authority over his administration, government and officials. There is also the reality that his security forces have been errant in failing to change their long-standing culture of corruption where policing and justice were distributed on the basis of one’s ability to pay. It is this laissez-faire attitude that made the security forces open to infiltration by Taliban supporters, resulting in the high rate of civilain casualties and police alike.
No doubt, the country stands at a historical crossroads which could see significantly greater destabilization, as it has been warned by American political experts. The nation is already going through a fearing insecurity challenges. The security situation is likely to be rocky in the coming weeks, especially after the winter ends when the Taliban had stepped up operations in previous years.
The nation will experience unexpected consequences if the national unity government does not consolidate its power and legitimacy and preserve some of the fragile gains in the country, acquired since 2001. There is also a prospect of significantly greater security instability in the country which will intensify the pressure on the economy and the new government will need to respond back accordingly.
They need to be little more committed and dedicated in forming the new cabinet before further devastation hits the country’s both economic and political fragile setups. The government authorities must take precautionary steps before the Taliban offensives begin.
Overall, let us now greet the end of NATO-led combat mission in Afghanistan who fought against Taliban and its alliance to establish peace and stability in the country. From now on, it is up to the Afghan nation to respond accordingly to the upcoming challenges to defend the little gains and stand united for the good of their own fate.

About samad1986

Abdul Samad Haidari is a poet, writer, teacher and a former freelance journalist, currently residing in Indonesia as a stateless refugee. He is the author of The Red Ribbon He fled his home country at the age of seven and grew up wandering in Pakistan and Iran as a child refugee, and was separated from his family for the majority of his childhood. For two years, at the age of eight and nine, he was forced into child labour in the construction industry in Iran. In contrast, Pakistan offered refugees like him the opportunity to study and work. This education and work experience culminated in Abdul teaching computer studies and English language courses at the Intel Computer Center and Pak Oxford Professionals. After the collapse of the Taliban government, Abdul returned to Afghanistan thinking that the security situation had improved, and that he could take part in the reconstruction of his war-torn country. With this in mind, Abdul served as a freelance journalist and humanitarian aid-worker in areas of the country that remained dangerous to civilians because of the influence of terrorist groups. Abdul served with the Norwegian refugee council (NRC), ActionAid Afghanistan, Daily Outlook Afghanistan group of newspapers, and The Daily Afghanistan Express. As a freelance journalist, Abdul wrote articles and editorials about on-the-ground realities, which were then circulated widely. These had a particular focus on women and children’s rights, corruption, transparency and accountability in government, warlords and terrorist groups’ actions and the systematic persecution of minority groups in both Afghanistan and Pakistan.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s