Hot answers tagged

102

Corruption is rampant in Afghanistan, including in the military. They routinely take bribes and sell military equipment to the Taliban. Basically, the average ANA soldier is there just to collect a paycheck, either legally or illegally. Combine that with the US withdrawal, and the fact that the Taliban is not being anywhere near as brutal as expected, and ...


79

One reason is that China is investing a significant amount in trying to build a land corridor through Pakistan to access ports in the Indian ocean as part of their belt and road initiative. China is heavily dependent on trade, and the majority of that trade goes by sea. One of China's geopolitical imperatives is to be able to secure those trade routes. One ...


78

There are multiple reasons behind this (in addition to the corruption of the Afghanistan government). Firstly, the Taliban is not some foreign movement that tried to gain a foothold in Afghanistan, it is a quasi-grassroots organization formed heavily from the Pashtun areas (one of the main ethnic groups). Before the Taliban formed, Afghanistan was run by ...


77

This article in the Guardian today answers precisely this question: It is a tale of two armies, one poorly equipped but highly motivated ideologically, and the other nominally well-equipped, but dependent on Nato support, poorly led and riddled with corruption. The article emphasizes how the strength of the Afghan army was overestimated by the US: It ...


74

Here are two main reasons. Firstly, Taliban wants to seek international recognition and not govern as a pariah. Gaining international recognition may potentially lead to the lifting of sanctions, bringing economic benefits. From The New York Times: They need to persuade foreign powers to send aid and lift sanctions if they are to reconstitute the bare ...


71

TL;DR: The Taliban has lasted for so long because it has a durable organizational structure and safe haven in Pakistan. Undercutting the Taliban is more complicated than rooting out its network of poppy cultivation. Yes, the sudden removal of its drug funds would likely hurt the group, but the organizational structures, recruitment networks, and other ...


60

The Taliban are not just a drug-running organization, not even predominantly a drug-running organization. The US-led coalition invaded Afghanistan because the Afghan government at the time sheltered terrorists. For all the cost of the longest war, it never did spend enough effort to really reconstruct Afghanistan. Instead it went to Iraq, and elsewhere. The ...


57

That's literally the last thing a rational Taliban decision maker would want to do. 20 years after getting kicked out the Taliban are back in power. They did just fine oppressing Afghans from 1994 to 2001, even as the international community condemned their behavior. In August 2001, if anyone had told me the US would invade Afghanistan and end Taliban rule,...


42

When a nation provides arms to another nation, there is at least the pretense that the recipient will use those weapons in accordance with international law (i.e. defensively in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter). When a nation directs another nation to attack, that pretense crumbles. Of course that's between nations. There used to be principles ...


39

Fact is, the new Taliban government is there to stay. Both the Russians and NATO took their shots at trying to keep Afghanistan under control. Both gave up eventually. Now the Chinese want to have their turn. But the Chinese tool of choice for exerting control over foreign countries isn't the gun, it's the shipping container. The new state of Afghanistan ...


39

This Q is pretty narrow in its title, but then asks more generally My question is really whether it is just that - that local officials make whatever decisions they think most aligns with their understanding of the religion or whether there are, or whether there are plans to establish, specific laws on various mundane subjects to guide their citizens in ...


34

TLDR: Persecute civilians locally Attack civilians in Western countries Military operations Can be engageddiplomatically Taliban ✔✔ (1994-2001)2021+: ??? allowed Al Qaeda operationsleading to 9/11 ✔✔✔ up to 2001: somewhat2016-present: Trump, Biden2021+: ? Al Qaeda N/A ✔✔✔ no ISIS ✔✔✔ ✔✔✔ ✔✔ (not very capable against hard opponents) no ISIS and Al-Qaeda ...


33

You implicitly assume that both: The Taliban could successfully overrun the Kabul airport The Taliban believe they could overrun the airport, to a high degree of confidence The Taliban have excelled at irregular warfare, and in conflict with the US they have been careful to fight where they are strong: they use ambushes, IEDs, and so-called "green-on-...


31

Are there any reliable indications on popular sentiment in Afghanistan for/against the Taliban? The sentiment is largely against the Taliban. From Bloomberg, The World Told Afghan Women It Had Their Backs — It Doesn’t, August 9, 2021. [Emboldening added.] Along with women’s rights, democracy is perishing. It is clear the Taliban cannot win Afghanistan at ...


31

TL;DR: We could probably conclude that all countries that oppose the US and/or India are quite welcoming of the Taliban i.e Pakistan, Russia, and China. Some of the Gulf countries have said they support stability in the region and have claimed they support the desire of the people of Afghanistan, so they might throw their weight around after it's a bit clear ...


25

Really? they could get revenge, They don't need revenge, they need to rule (i.e. money and power) they could catch prisoners/hostages, Short-term benefit with long term risks. they could "liberate" the airport, The airport liberates itself at a good rate. They may as well fail spectacularily. they could prevent yet more people from fleeing, ...


24

There is no point in discussing whether an organisation is a terrorist group. The only possible answer that I can give is is it classified as a terrorist group. And since you tag "united-states", I will look at terrorist groups as classified by the USA. The question has been edited somewhat since I answered it, but I'll let this answer stand. ...


24

This is probably a matter of politics more than anything else. Of course, from a rational perspective it would make more sense for the Taliban to dislike the nation that invaded their country, drove them out of power, and spent two decades killing their soldiers more than a country that, so far as I can tell and unlike several dozen other countries, did not ...


23

No, they don't have an official legal code yet. Yes, they have plans to create some kind of a legislative body and write laws after forming the government. Yes, they already have written statutes, but those need to be formalized. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid answered some question about their future laws in the first press conference in Kabul: Let’s ...


21

You can judge the answer by the reality on the ground. As of right now [mo: 11AUG21],the only areas remaining under the control of the puppet regime are basically some districts near Kabul, plus the Hazarajat. This is not at all surprising to anyone who has any basic knowledge of Afghanistan. The entire North has now fallen to the Talibs, save for Mazar-i-...


21

Defense vs. Offense If you provide arms to a country, you can claim it was for purely defensive purposes, which is considered a valid right by every nation (and certainly every nation with a military). If you provide a bounty for the death of particular individuals, then you are saying: "Our interests are not naturally aligned, but I will align them by ...


18

Well, it's a bit complicated. From I read in several articles and I'm summarizing here: China (like Pakistan too) hope that the Afghan Taliban will keep their promises and "rein in" TTP and other militant groups whose fighters are "embedded" with the Afghan Taliban. Allegedly, there are some 10,000 foreign fighters in Afghanistan, ...


16

The Afghanistan Army doesn't seem to be putting up a fight, at least for now. According to the Afghani Ambassador to the Netherlands, as reported by Nieuwsuur (see my translation below): 'Terugtrekking leger is strategisch' De snelle opmars van de terreurbeweging wijt hij vooral aan de snelle terugtrekking van Westerse troepen. De Verenigde Staten hadden ...


16

Afghanistan–Pakistan border is a 2,670-kilometre (1,660 mi) international land border between the both countries that is called as The Durand Line. Although the Durand Line is internationally recognized as the western border of Pakistan, it remains largely unrecognized by Afghanistan. There is a border barrier being built by Pakistan along with this Durand ...


15

But ...why? What is there to gain for China by association with a militant coup? You quoted the very reply to your question; you just need to read it outside the scope of the US' perception of things. China isn't associating with a "militant coup". A wide resistance movement has driven a foreign occupier out of the country, and a locally-self-...


13

I am an Afghan national and I have worked 6 years with US Army Marines, British Army and private contractors. The truth is that our government is corrupt and no soldier is going to die for 200$ a month for a corrupt government. The second reason is NATO leaving Afghanistan. At the beginning there were almost 150,000 soldiers from different country now there ...


13

No, it isn't. Whatever the supposed benefits, this flies totally against the international norms of not acquiring territory through military means. The "military means" are rather obvious: US troops would have to be redeployed to restabilize the situation on the ground. If this was allowed for this "good reason", all sorts of "good ...


13

Why did the Taliban attack the US in the first place? What did we even do to them? The Taliban didn't attack the US. The September 11 attacks were committed by al-Qaeda. According to Wikipedia: At around 9:30 pm on September 11, 2001, George Tenet, director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) told the president and U.S. senior officials inside the ...


12

TL;DR: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Afghanistan Every few decades since 1500 B.C. some great military nation tries to take over Afghanistan and loses. India, Mongolia, China, Middle East, Britain (3 times), Russia and now the US. The trick for when the aliens invade is get them to start with Afghanistan. This might be a flippant answer but they ...


12

One point that I strangely have not seen mentioned here yet: China highly values the principle of non-interference in internal matters. Quite obviously, it is in China's interest to not have interference from outside on matters it considers internal. It allows China (the PRC) to do within its borders as it desires, restricted only by its own principles. ...


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