Internal Taliban divisions come to the fore as squabbling hinders the formation of Afghanistan’s new Islamic Emirate
By Pepe Escobar, posted with permission and first posted at Asia Times
It looked like everything was set for the Taliban to announce the new government of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan after this Friday’s afternoon prayers. But then internal dissent prevailed.
That was compounded by the adverse optics of a ragtag “resistance” in the Panjshir Valley that is still not subdued. The “resistance” is de facto led by a CIA asset, former vice president Amrullah Saleh.
The Taliban maintain they have captured several districts and at least four checkpoints at the Panjshir, controlling 20% of its territory. Still, there’s no endgame in sight.
Supreme Leader Haibatullah Akhundzada, a Kandahar religious scholar, is expected to be the new power of the Islamic Emirate when it’s finally formed. Mullah Baradar will likely preside just below him as a presidential figure along with a 12-member governing council known as a “shura.”
If that’s the case, there would be certain similarities between the institutional role of Akhundzada and Ayatollah Khamenei in Iran, even though the theocratic frameworks, Sunni and Shiite, are completely different.
Mullah Baradar, co-founder of the Taliban with Mullah Omar in 1994 and imprisoned in Guantanamo then Pakistan, has served as the Taliban’s top diplomat as the head of its political office in Doha.
He has also been a key interlocutor in the protracted negotiations with the now-extinct Kabul government and the expanded troika of Russia, China, the US and Pakistan.
To call the negotiations to form a new Afghan government fractious would be a spectacular understatement. They have been managed, in practice, by former president Hamid Karzai and ex-head of the Reconciliation Council Abdullah Abdullah: a Pashtun and a Tajik who have vast international experience.
Both Karzai and Abdullah are shoo-ins to be part of the 12-member shura.
As the negotiations seemed to advance, a frontal clash developed between the Taliban political office in Doha and the Haqqani network regarding the distribution of key government posts.
Add to it the role of Mullah Yakoob, son of Mullah Omar, and the head of the powerful Taliban military commission overseeing a massive network of field commanders, among which he’s extremely well-respected.
Recently Yakoob had let it leak that those “living in luxury in Doha” cannot dictate terms to those involved in fighting on the ground. As if this was not contentious enough, Yakoob also has serious problems with the Haqqanis – who are now in charge of a key post: security of Kabul via the so far ultra-diplomatic Khalil Haqqani.
Apart from the fact that the Taliban amount to a complex collection of tribal and regional warlords, the dissent illustrates the abyss between what could roughly be explained as more Afghan nationalist-centered and more Pakistani-centered factions.
In the latter case, the key protagonists are the Haqqanis, who operate very close to Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
It’s a Sisyphean task, to say the least, to create political legitimacy even in an Afghanistan that is bound to be ruled by Afghans who rid the nation of a foreign occupation.
Since 2002, both with Karzai and then Ashraf Ghani, the regime in power for most Afghans was regarded as an imposition by foreign occupiers validated by dodgy elections.
In Afghanistan, everything is about tribe, kin and clan. The Pashtuns are a vast tribe with myriad subtribes that all adhere to the common pashtunwali, a code of conduct that blends self-respect, independence, justice, hospitality, love, forgiveness, revenge and tolerance.
They will be in power again, as during Taliban 1.0 from 1996 to 2001. The Dari-speaking Tajiks, on the other hand, are non-tribal and form the majority of urban residents of Kabul, Herat and Mazar-i-Sharif.
Assuming it will peacefully solve its internal Pashtun squabbles, a Taliban-led government will necessarily need to conquer Tajik hearts and minds among the nation’s traders, bureaucrats and educated clergy.
Dari, derived from Persian, has long been the language of government administration, high culture and foreign relations in Afghanistan. Now it will all be switched to Pashto again. This is the schism the new government will have to bridge.
There are already surprises on the horizon. The extremely well-connected Russian ambassador in Kabul, Dmitry Zhirnov, revealed that he is discussing the Panjshir stalemate with the Taliban.
Zhirnov noted that the Taliban considered some of the demands of the Panjshiris as “excessive” – as in they wanted too many seats in the government and autonomy for some non-Pashtun provinces, Panjshir included.
It’s not far-fetched to consider the widely-trusted Zhirnov could become a mediator not only between Pashtuns and Panjshiris but even between opposed Pashtun factions.
The delightful historical irony will not be lost on those who remember the 1980s jihad of the unified mujahideen against the USSR.
Well. It’s not just in Afghanistan that everything is about tribe, kin and clan. That the factions of Afghanistan would unite the time to take their country back from the fleeing occupier is logical. That they will all stay united behind the Taliban would be illogical considering the differences at hand.
Oh, the irony! Is it possible that the insurgents that won against the Empire will now fight against a counterinsurgency funded by the Empire. Are they going to allow the script to be flipped? They had better find unity in government quickly or this will turn out very badly for the people of Afghanistan.
Remember the 80’s
The Kremlin indicated that they will not mediate. They want the Taliban to work out the formation of the government by their own efforts (logically, any outside mediation would be seen as “invader-like” by the Afghans).
I believe the Russians would offer advice if asked.
Once a government is formed, the relationship could change. If the Russians and Chinese approve of the formation and inclusion of the government, then both will be much more active and supportive in order to stabilize the economy and help the people.
No one close to the situation has stars in their eyes or deludes themselves with wishful notions.
The Taliban are not the Sandinistas taking charge of Nicaragua in the eighties.
Judging a movement by its actions is just common sense. Even if you discount their prior rule and the intervening years of insurgency, and the fear the mass of people have toward the Taliban, holding judgment is prudent.
We don’t see a warm welcome with flowers and flags for the Taliban. We see surrender and submission.
– “The delightful historical irony will not be lost on those who remember the 1980s jihad of the unified mujahideen against the USSR.”
Only Pepe Escobar could break down these intricacies for us as they deserve to be broken down.
But as to the Russians in Afghanistan, I always recall the experience of Andre Vltchek who traveled the country, and found an exceeding love for the ordinary Russian among the ordinary Afghans, from their time of hosting the Soviet military:
In Afghanistan Russians Are Now Remembered With Love
If anyone is welcome in this seething market of demands, it is Russia, I think.
https://www.arabnews.com/node/1922286/world — “Taliban delivers US military vehicles to Iran”
IRGC specialists are in Afghanistan right now, going through every bit of American military hardware in that country.
Some Humvees, tanks, and helicopters have been retrieved and sent back to Iran so far.
Apparently, there is quite a lot of American equipment and hardware in Afghanistan.
The magnitude of arms and hardware in Afghanistan suggests that perhaps the US was hoping the Afghan army would use them against the Taliban, or maybe Biden was too shy to just gift them to Iran openly, so he left them where he knew they would all fall into Iranian hands.
In any case, Biden has one-upped Obama in giving American hardware to Iran.
“Dari, derived from Persian, has long been the language of government administration, high culture and foreign relations in Afghanistan. Now it will all be switched to Pashto again.”
Tyranny is tyranny ,whether practiced by a local or foreigner. Typically a tyrant impose it’s will & norms / dictate on it’s victims. The USA practices tyranny on foreign lands & it’s lower class citizens . The Taliban practices tyranny in Afghanistan via Military seizure of government , Tribalism , Corruption & Theocracy.
Only time will tell whether the “new Taliban” is a positive thing in lives of ordinary Afghanistan citizens (particularly the youth, female , professionals & progressive minded people)
The previous Afghan government printed new banknotes last year — and the writing on them was in English and Pashto.
70% of Afghanistan speak Persian. Dari is not derived from Persian, it is Persian.
The difference between Shirazi Persian, Tehrani Persian, and Dari Persian is the difference between an Englishman speaking English, and a Scottish and Irishman speaking English. Whereas, Kurdish and Pashto, even though they are Indo-Iranian languages, are not intelligible to Persian speakers, like Swedish is not intelligible to English speakers, in spite of their common Germanic root.
So, to sum up, it was the US puppet government that started the de-Persianization of Afghanistan, not the Taliban. And as far as I can see, Pepe does not provide any evidence that the Taliban wish to continue that trend. But even if they switch to Pashto, still that will not bring Afghanistan out from under Iran’s shadow, as Pashto is also an Iranian language.
Thanks for this reminder Anonymous
It is astonishing how history since the Patriarch Abraham has largely revolved around his descendants, especially the 4 main branches, the Romans, the Persians, the ancient semitic Jews, and the Arabs. Even the Kurds are among his descendants (see who ended the first Crusades and who are key issue now at the intersection of Syria, Turkey, Iraq and Iran)!
The Arabs and semitic Jews are in abject situation now, similar to the slaves at times of Pharoahs, even with some having Ferraris and other bling. The mantle of the Romans has been fought over by Europe and the Russians for countless generations. The descendants of the real Romans, the southern Italians, are in as near an abject position as their former two semitic relatives, and unofficial second class citizens in Italy itself.
But Iran lingers, the inheritor of the ancient Persians, and is central stage now! What a survivor.
Your excellent observation about one of the last acts of the AZ occupation being to change the traditional language forms of the Afghan currency indicates the importance of the ongoing war on Iran. It aims to strip away natural allies and closely related neighbors, to build barriers and to weaken before the final onslaught. This for them may now be the central issue.
The Romans and Persians are neither Semitic, nor descended from Abraham.
Abraham lived in the city of Ur, circa 2000 BC.
The Iranian civilization of Bactria, in present-day Afghanistan, where the prophet Zarathushtra lived and preached, was already very ancient in 2000 BC, when it was destroyed by the Semitic Assyrians.
The Persians are an Iranian people, and all Iranian languages are part of the Indo-European family, which is unrelated to the Semitic family.
The Persians migrated to Iran, from India, in the aftermath of the Kurukshetra war, where they were defeated.
The Achaemenid Persian dynastic names of Kurus (Cyrus I, II) and Kambojia (Cambyses I, II) are all that is left linking the Persians to the Kurus and Kambojas of the Kurukshetra war.
In addition, the Saka and the Pahlava, who also took part in the Kurukshetra war, are known to Western historians as the Scythians and the Parthians, respectively.
https://www.google.com/search?q=Nuristani+people — Check the images. This is what the Saka, Pahlava, Bactrians, and the ancestors of the Persians looked like.
For further proof, check:
“The Scythians are generally believed to have been of Iranian (or Iranic; an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group) origin; they spoke a language of the Scythian branch of the Iranian languages, and practiced a variant of ancient Iranian religion.”
“In artworks, the Scythians are portrayed exhibiting Caucasoid traits. In Histories, the 5th-century BC Greek historian Herodotus describes the Budini of Scythia as red-haired and grey-eyed. In the 5th century BC, Greek physician Hippocrates argued that the Scythians were light skinned as well as having a particularly high rate of hypermobility, to a point of affecting warfare. In the 3rd century BC, the Greek poet Callimachus described the Arismapes (Arimaspi) of Scythia as fair-haired. The 2nd-century BC Han Chinese envoy Zhang Qian described the Sai (Saka), an eastern people closely related to the Scythians, as having yellow (probably meaning hazel or green) and blue eyes. In Natural History, the 1st-century AD Roman author Pliny the Elder characterises the Seres, sometimes identified as Saka or Tocharians, as red-haired, blue-eyed and unusually tall.In the late 2nd century AD, the Christian theologian Clement of Alexandria says that the Scythians and the Celts have long auburn hair. The 2nd-century Greek philosopher Polemon includes the Scythians among the northern peoples characterised by red hair and blue-grey eyes. In the late 2nd or early 3rd century AD, the Greek physician Galen writes that Scythians, Sarmatians, Illyrians, Germanic peoples and other northern peoples have reddish hair. The fourth-century Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus wrote that the Alans, a people closely related to the Scythians, were tall, blond and light-eyed. The fourth-century bishop Gregory of Nyssa wrote that the Scythians were fair skinned and blond haired. The 5th-century physician Adamantius, who often followed Polemon, describes the Scythians as fair-haired.”
The Scythians (and Sarmatians) are the ancestors of most Europeans today, in one way or another.
“The Persian nation contains a number of tribes as listed here. … : the Pasargadae, Maraphii, and Maspii, upon which all the other tribes are dependent. Of these, the Pasargadae are the most distinguished; they contain the clan of the Achaemenids from which spring the Perseid kings. Other tribes are the Panthialaei, Derusiaei, Germanii, all of which are attached to the soil, the remainder -the Dai, Mardi, Dropici, Sagarti, being nomadic.”
—Herodotus, Histories 1.101 & 125, circa 450 BC
The Germanii of Herodotus are the ancestors of the modern Germanic people. They lived in the Iranian province which is still called Kerman today.
And the Sagarti of Herodotus are the Asagarta, aka Asgard of old:
There is still today a town in Iran called Asgerd:
But this Asgerd is not the original Asgard, which is:
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shahr-e_Sukhteh — This city whose name is unknown today, is right next to Kerman, to the East, and is where the Germans got their myths of the great city of Asgard. Note that many very tall skeletons have been excavated from the Burnt City — much taller than the people of the time. By the time of Herodotus, the Asgardians/Asagartians had reverted to a nomadic lifestyle.
And last but not least, the Persians of Achaemenid times, circa 500 BC, were a mixed race already, having lived among the Elamites for centuries and thoroughly intermarried with that people. The Persian civilization of that era was also a mix of Elamite and Aryan civilizations.
The Elamites were also not a Semitic people, but nor were they Indo-European.
Why doesn’t anyone know any of this?
“..the importance of the ongoing war on Iran.” — As you say.
Even today, the number of common words between Persian and English, is in the hundreds, including such basic words as mother, father, brother, daughter, etc, which simply rules out the possibility of loanwords.
If a certain tribe, which is inimical to Iran, did not control the media and academia in the West, everyone in the West would know that their ancestors came from the ancient Land of the Aryans, aka Iran, and that some of their close kin still live in the Hindu Kush mountains, in Nuristan.
But regarding the Semites, and Abraham; their earliest ancestors came out of Africa some time after 4000 BC, and settled in West Asia, and in Mesopotamia. They lived together with the racially and linguistically unrelated Sumerians for centuries, and eventually founded their own civilization, which was Akkad of old, the forebear of Babylon and Assyria.
Assyria (and Babylon to a slightly lesser extent) were the ancient enemies of the Aryans/Iranians. Assyria was by all account the USA of antiquity, long before Rome was built.
Assyria was annihilated in the 7th century BC, by King Cyaxares (Huv-xshatra; “Good ruler”). Babylon fell in the next century, to Cyrus II of Anshan (Cyrus the Great).
Neither Assyria, nor Babylon, ever rose again.
But as you have observed, Iran is still here.
Thank you for the remarkable exposition.
> The Persians migrated to Iran, from India, in the aftermath of the Kurukshetra war, where they were defeated.
I really thought the battle of Kurukshetra (and the epic Mahabharata) was just a myth.
The Bharata Varsha extended from modern day India up to Saudi Arabia and Iran and the people living across many kingdoms on this land were called Aryans. Sanskrit was their official language. This civilization has no beginning as it belongs to Sanatana Dharma (eternal natural law of the universe). As this revealed to western intellectuals in 19 and early 20th centuries, many of them
started hailing the deep philosophy and spiritual wisdom of this land duly preserved in Vedas, upanishads, Bhagavat Gita and Puranas. This scared western elite – especially church and rulers also came onboard because the spiritual ideas of this wisdom was too liberal and empowering for masses – so much so that once adopted, masses cannot be subjugated with fear, intimidation, greed and so on. That’s why British had to adopt a policy of uprooting the Sanskrit-based education system from the country. For the same reason, a coordinated campaign was started and continues to this day, to vilify India and its culture, and major media houses – BBC, NYC, WaPo etc. are on board with this agenda.
As Max Mueller, the propagator of the Aryan invasion theory, wrote to his wife, “It took only 200 years for us to Christianise the whole of Africa, but even after 400 years India eludes us, I have come to realise that it is Sanskrit which has enabled India to do so. And to break it I have decided to learn Sanskrit.” (Source: Assaulting India’s Pluralist Ethos by D. Harikumar The Hindu).
We can agree to disagree.
I agree much of currently taught history is falsified.
And I oversimplified.
Iran today is very much an admixture of nations such as USA or Russia is of many different peoples.
Also I am not familiar with the mythology the Iranian people surround themselves with now.
So your argument may hold for various parts/sectors of Iran, especially certain regions and ruling classes, but a portion of ancient Iranians were semitic. This has been confirmed by DNA analysis and closeness of interrelations with arabs, ancient jews, kurds, etc. And it persists in folklore and traditions among people. And it exists in Scripture where the descendants of Abraham were promised inheritance of the land.
It is striking the similarities among southern Europeans (especially southern Spanish/Italians) with Iranians and Arabs. They are clearly cousins. Take one middle-aged man from each of these 4 and line them up; his own villager may not be able to tell them apart! And the quaint old Sicilian ladies who wear their scarves/”abaya”-like black dresses to this day?! Branches of history trace lineage following these dress codes which precede Islam by millennia. Just as Alexander the Great met Pashtun ladies with their burkas eons ago. I read a while ago that Pashtun/Parthians are descended from a semitic jewish tribe that migrated thereabouts; they continue with this burqa-like tradition which was also present in ancient Israel.
I learned 2 of the grandchildren of the Patriarch were named “Ruum” (father of Rome) and the other “Faaris” (father of Persia). Ironic how these became most bitter of enemies later! And the arab vs the jews. Most neighboring closely-related tribes fated to reprise the primary struggle as between Cain and Able – see English/French, etc..
I did not say there were no pre-existing Persians. As Ishmael, another son of the Patriarch, went on to become the “father of the Arabs” – even-though there were pre-existing Qahtanian arabs – by his descendants being favored by the Lord and numerically dominating the original arabs, the same principle could hold for Persians and the descendents of Faaris.
However, Iran is clearly diverse and this is among reasons which have protected it for this long. This has been its blessing and strength for millennia. It has given it strategic depth. My understanding, like yours, is that that portion of Iran of Azeri/Turk backgrounds (the Caucasian part) appear to be descendants of these Scythians. And this part has dominated Iran for a long time. And that these Scythians, like other nomads of the Caucasus (ie Khazars, Turks, Europeans…) are distinct in language, looks, belief-systems in antiquity, and way of life. Unfortunately, I forgot much of this history!
You are wrong on almost every single point, and what is more, you fail to substantiate even a single one of your claims.
For example, the Kurds are not Semites. A quick Google search could have revealed this.
There is certainly Semitic blood in Iran today, as there is much, much Turkish and Mongol blood as well, but your allusion to pre-Arab Semitic presence in Iran needs substantiation. Which Semitic tribe penetrated the mountains of Iran in antiquity? None of the oldest inhabitants of Western Iran, the Guti, Lullubi, Kassite, Elamite, etc, were Semitic.
Then you equate the Pashtun with the Parthians, which needs substantiation. And you add that they are descended from Jews. I happen to understand a little bit of the ancient Parthian tongue, the Pahlavi language, and I also speak a little bit of Arabic and Hebrew; let me assure you, the Pahlavi language is in no way related to any Semitic tongue. But feel free to demonstrate a connection.
You refer to biblical scripture as your source of information, and in the same breath allude to fully substantiated claims backed by undisputable evidence, as “mythology” which Iranians subscribe to. Just so you know, I received my graduate degree in history from Stanford.
You claim the Azeri people who live in the Northwest of Iran are Scythians, even though every single historical authority of ancient Greece and Rome has clearly stated that the Scythians were a blonde or red-haired people with blue or grey eyes, whereas the absolute majority of Iranians all over Iran are dark haired and dark eyed today, including in Azerbaijan.
And you also fail to demonstrate when the Scythians invaded the Northwestern Iranian region. Did they displace the Urartians, Manneans, and Medians? Or did they ally themselves with Assyria against Media, and were subsequently crushed by the Medians?
Look, Faaris has nothing to do with the Persians. The Persian word for Persia is Parsa, which in Persian means pious. The Persians were the Pious People. The reason Parsi became Farsi is because the Arabic language has no ‘p’ sound, so they pronounced Parsi as Farsi. What does this have to do with Faaris?
And in parting, here is a list of English words that are shared with Farsi.
Mother – madar
Father – pedar
Brother – baradar
Daughter – dokhtar
Cow – gaw
Goose – ghaaz
Duck – ordak
Hog – khook
Good – khoob
Bad – bad
No – na
Eyebrow – abro
Lip – lap
Chin – chune
Mortality – mordan
thou – tou
Jungle – jangal
Musk – mashk
Amber – anbar
Key – keylid
Star – stare
Warm – garm
Worm – kerm
Pussy(-cat) – pishi
Taragon – Tarkhun
Look, I lied. There aren’t hundreds of word similarities between English and Persian. There is 1000+. Perhaps if there is some Iranian reader here, like Arshan, they can verify the translations I have provided above.
But just so you know, I also speak a little bit of French, German, Spanish and Italian. And I can tell you that the word similarities also extend to those languages. For example, the word for ‘young’ is “javan” in Farsi, “joven” in Spanish, and “giovane” in Italian. And the word for ‘death’ or ‘dying’ in Farsi is “mordan”, while in French it is ‘mort’ and in Spanish it is muerte.
Now, provide some evidence of your claim about Persians and Parthians and Kurds being Semitic or Jews or whatever you are saying. I would love to see you try.
As for the rest of your comment, it is all wrong as well, statement by statement.
The Afghans are an incredibly diverse people with the blood of many nationalities running through their veins. They have been continuously subjugated, or at war, since time immemorial. Can only hope they find some peace in the future.
Ethnic groups of Afghanistan –
Ben Norton from TheGrayzone wrote a long article about Afghanistan’s Ghani – who, at the end of the day was just a cardboard cutout for the liberal elite. Reading through this, you will see repeating patterns, like an election count suddenly held up for no reason, and then suddenly Ghani wins, a method and tactic tried in the Latin America’s a number of times, but they’re now wise to it.
Reading through this, one can also almost understand why The Taliban walked across Afghanistan unmolested and took the country simply by default.
Mr. Escobar gave us a surgically precise description of circumstances, aiming at essentials.
First of all, and most important of all, I think we are not so close to Afghanistan disintegration, any more. These quarrels are usual in any government formation. Having in mind such intricate only Pashtun tribe, and not regarding others, these quarrels (why not to say negotiations) are quite expectable. The formation process without significant disputes, in such Afghanistan, would cause serious doubts in observers. Let them have argument, any quarrel have relaxing effect.
Luckily, the Afghans (Talibans etc) are not left alone, or worse, left to themselves.
There is “the widely-trusted Zhirnov”, without any “historical irony”. What is important is a thing should work.
As for China, see, for example, my comments in https://thesaker.is/afghan-people-deserve-your-attention/ , (last ones in the comment section).
(Just to add, Mr. Anonymus clarified to us the language issue)
Many fascinating facets facing the “reconstruction” of political life of the Afghan person.
Thank you for efforts, I am indebted (to God) to you because you are the only reliable source – I find- and do an excellent job hurdling/ maneuvering to get us “the news”
I do not know about Afghanistan, but I know that US of Aipachistan haa a problem holding onto its own
The Taliban has always been fragmented with each Talib pledging loyalty (bai’at) to a leader of one of several shuras. These shuras may or may not cooperate with each other. Further, Talibs may switch shuras. Following Pashtun cultural practice, unlike other societies the predominantly Pashtun Talibs have a dislike, almost an aversion, for central leadership. Perhaps this is one reason why Mullah Omar had to have the leadership of Taliban 1.0 foisted upon him and even then, he stayed in Kandahar.
Nonetheless two leaders, Mullah Akhundzada (reportedly favoured by Iran) and Serajuddin Haqqani (Pakistan) have been rivals for the general leadership of the Taliban for a decade, the reason being each has a different position on the policies of the ‘Emirate’ (eg Akhundzada reportedly is not inclined to cooperate with al-Qaeda/ISIS, while Haqqani is more open to the proposition), and each wants to advance his position; personal glory is secondary to these men.
This is where I believe Mullah Beradar might play a role in reconciling the two rivals. He has great prestige in the movement especially, I suspect, amongst the young soldiery — co-founder of the movement; fought together with Mullah Omar; former mujahideen fighter and had seen combat against the Soviets; then fought the Northern Alliance and Karzai govt forces. He is reportedly also the brother-in-law of Mullah Omar and if true, he will have the ear of Omar’s son, Mullah Yaakub, the Taliban’s ‘military commander.’
At any rate the Talibs better get their act together, and fast. Afghans’ continued peace and well-being very much depend on it.
THE US REMAKING OF THE TALIBAN… AS GOVERNMENT
Why is the Taliban considered automatically as the successor to Asraf Ghani? Who says that must be the case?
Reply to Pepe Escobar
Evidences are accumulating that Taliban is very likely to be a CIA plant to take over from the Ashraf Ghani government. Those evidences, main ones below, are empirical. The logic of the CIA plant claim is even more compelling: the rest of NATO was not told beforehand about the US withdrawal and because the Taliban is itself a CIA creation. If America made the Taliban, it can remake the same. The evidences:
a) On Aug 30, the UN Security Council (UNSC) passed resolution S/RES/2593 (see: https://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s%20res%202593.pdf) which the US had drafted only two days before that date. This is most unusual, and never done before especially since America was the defeated power over a country it has itself disowned, publicly. You see nothing like this over Iraq or Libya. The resolution is a page and a half, covering six main points of contentions, all of which are the exact same talking points at CNN/NBC and NYT, all demonstrated to be US intelligence and military mouthpieces. It is as if the US, fearing the Taliban might go back on its deal with the US at Doha, wanted simply to bind the Taliban into rebranding and to market itself anew, if only to make more palatable US support. Think of it as the US selling democracy and human rights. US rebranding of terrorism, by militant groups and itself, is nothing new. See PBS sells the Al-Qaeda chief, Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, here:https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/abu-mohammad-al-jolani-interview-hayat-tahrir-al-sham-syria-al-qaeda/
b) Related to the UN resolution above is the actual US draft, which had only 24 hours to negotiate with inputs from Russia and China. Their input involved adding only one paragraph but deleted in its entirety when the final document, i.e. S/RES/2593, went to print and was circulated at the UNSC. What was the paragraph? Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia: “…despite the fact that the resolution was proposed against the backdrop of a terrible terrorist attack, the authors categorically refused to refer to a passage on the fight against terrorism containing internationally recognized terrorist organizations ISIL and the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM)” (https://news.un.org/en/story/2021/08/1098802) That US position stands in stark contrast to the 1999 UN Resolution (see this: https://undocs.org/en/S/RES/1267(1999)) in which US places the Taliban as squarely responsible for handing over Osama bin Ladin and assort terror groups inside Afghanistan.
c) Prior to the Doha talks that involved Russia and China, with Pakistan made to wait behind the meeting room door, only the US, including President Trump, hosted and talked directly with the Taliban, with the Ashraf Ghani listening in. In Doha, we China asked the two of them to make public the contents of those discussions, minus the details, of course, but the gist. Nothing. Even the Taliban refused to say. But in the week prior to US pullout deadline, culminating in the Kabul airport fiasco, the US-Taliban deal became apparent: surprise withdrawal, no fighting back from Ghani’s forces, and letting in “refugees” from Ghani’s government, after letting Ghani first leave. It is as if the Kabul mayhem was deliberate to let happen so we won’t know who actually are from Ghani’s side, who might be Taliban. Why would the Taliban want to insert its people among them? Answer below:
d) We Chinese don’t know how many Americans were left behind in preference for Afghans. (One plane can only take so many. And one runway can only let in so many planes.) But we have this figure from America: More than 30,000 people went to the US from Afghanistan. Of these, about 10,000 needed additional scrutiny, 100 of whom were flagged as possibly linked to terrorist organizations. And two of them were briefly held in the Bagram airbase, but not sure if they were sent to Guantanamo. These two will be deported to … of all places Kosovo! (See here: a Chinese Weibo account but reproduced on YouTube, https://youtu.be/a4xdNoFKaFw) The logical explanation is that the Taliban wanted insurance, and so inserted their people into the US in case the latter don’t make good on their deal with it (whatever that is). That logic is not without basis, namely US acquiesce to Taliban as their new Afghanistan partner and, hence, government, to wit one Abdul Qayyum Zakir, a former Guantanamo prisoner. He is today “acting defense minister” after fighting America for the past decade. Zakir isn’t the only one in the Taliban seniority. That we are sure because we have seen them in Tianjin.
e) While all focus was on Kabul, nobody looked into the Bagram military and air base where the US abandoned, brimming with various advanced weapons in good condition, according to a Russian inventory count cited by Yuri Zhdanov of the International Police Association. Unlike those at Kabul airport, the weapons, exact number undisclosed, numbered tens of thousands if one includes things like bazookas, anti-aircraft equipment, drones and the like. This seems like a perfect way to arm your newly anointed government, that is, under the cover of a hasty withdrawal.
f) Pending US pullout, the last face-to-face meeting between CIA and the Taliban was August 23. This meeting was weird because, out of protocol and urgency of the situation, and because Ashraf Ghani hadn’t surrendered, it ought to have facilitated the organization of withdrawal. Instead, the Kabul mayhem resulted. We don’t know what they talked about, the meeting between CIA Director William Burns and Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban de facto chief. But withdrawal certainly wasn’t the main topic. Perhaps a settling of accounts because four days prior, the US froze all Afghan monies held in US banks but not the US$146 million Ashraf Ghani took with him. Taliban payment for the humvees?
The prevailing idea that China (with Russia) would reconstruct Afghanistan for the Taliban and secure it internationally and diplomatically shouldn’t be a foregone conclusion and a natural consequence of US withdrawal. For one thing, the Taliban has not mentioned by name ETIM, denounce it much less, a terror group that the Mike Pompeo lifted from the US terrorist list in January 2021 but remains on the UN roster. For another, the US seems more eager than us (China and Russia) to rebrand the Taliban and cover for them in the UN and world stage. If the US lied about WMD in Iraq, lied about Gaddafi in Libya, about chemical warfare in Syria, who is to say they aren’t behind the Taliban today?
The idea that the US abandoned Afghanistan in order to strengthen its South China Sea containment of China is a red-herring. What more can the US do that we Chinese can’t deal with, or repel? Afghanistan taught us, again, that US scheming, imperialist agenda and hegemonic designs have not left them. Once a thief always a thief, like father like son.
Meanwhile, we are stepping up surveillance along the borders. And, members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization are conducting drills along their borders with Afghanistan. Why do people think that’s just for show?
https://www.trtworld.com/magazine/how-iran-taliban-ties-are-shaping-up-post-us-pullout-from-afghanistan-49691/ — How Iran-Taliban ties are shaping up post-US-pullout from Afghanistan
https://amp.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/3147578/china-and-iran-seek-common-ground-afghanistan — China and Iran seek common ground on Afghanistan
“Chinese foreign minister says Beijing is looking to work with Tehran to help rebuild their war-torn neighbour”
The MSM is finally catching up with the Afghanistan narrative.
Meanwhile, the Yemenis have launched a ballistic missile attack at Saudi Arabia, striking a target 1000 kms away from Yemen.
The Saudi port city of Al Dammam, on the Persian Gulf, was struck last night, and the coalition forces have acknowledged this.
The Israeli media has already reported on the incident.
This twitter stream seems to be presenting some clarity. The theme is: Is there an inter-Taliban conflict?
You need to click on ‘show this thread’ as it consists of 12 points.
A day after the arrival in Kabul of the Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Lt Gen Faiz Hamid to improve “bilateral relations”, he met Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of the Hizb-e-Islami party.
Lt Gen Hameed, led a delegation and participated in talks about the recent changes, ranging from the Taliban takeover to their efforts to form a new government in Afghanistan, said Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.
“What do you hope is going to happen now in Afghanistan,” a reporter asked Gen Faiz. “We are working for peace and stability in Afghanistan,” said a member of Hameed’s entourage.
“Don’t worry, everything will be okay,” the ISI chief told the reporter with a smile.
What with the ISI Chief strutting around Kabul, should we then have high hopes for peace in Afghanistan ?
Only terrorists go to talk with Hekmatyar and Haqquani. They’ve been given enough cash to keep everything at a boil there. By the US. The ISI meeting them there is to get on the good books of US again, get off the FATF grey list and do their bidding. Yup, now Pakistan will stop hugging Iron Brother like a bear. It’s coming soon.
The cauldron of Baluchistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan will be stirred by the same ignominious bastards.
The Haqqani Network (HN), which has the backing of elements within the Pakistani security establishment, is one of Afghanistan’s most experienced and sophisticated insurgent organizations.
HN established its jihadist credentials in the 1970s during the Afghan war against the Soviets as a Taliban-allied militant group. The network rose to power in large part through the backing of Pakistan, which allegedly supports Islamist militants in Afghanistan in order to create strategic depth.
In 2011, Adm. Mike Mullen, then chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called HN a “veritable arm” of Pakistan’s premier intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
Because of HN’s close relationship with certain Islamist militant factions (Al Qaeda, the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Taiba) and state actors (allegedly, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia), HN employs a policy of “organizational ambiguity” to ensure that the link between foreign sponsors and HN operations is kept from public view.
https://newsmediab.tasnimnews.com/Tasnim/Uploaded/Video/1400/06/15/1400061510202228723539584.mp4 — Taliban raising their flag at the Panjshir municipal building.
The message that goes with the clip: the people of Panjshir have nothing to worry about.
What’s-his-name and Ahmad Masoud have fled to Tajikistan.
The Taliban while raising their flag should have also raised the Pakistani flag for the extensive help provided by Pakistan in capturing Panjshir valley.
Ahmad Massoud (@Mohsood123) Tweeted:
The Taliban are not fighting with us but the Pakistani army and ISI are leading them. The Taliban are not strong enough to compete with us but the Pakistan Army is cooperating with them #SanctionPakistan
The Resistance Force’s headquarters were attacked by a Pakistan plane on Sunday night in the Dashtak area of Panjshir.
Pakistani Air Force reportedly used drones to drop bombs on Panjshir and also sent special forces to help the Taliban capture the rebelling province.
Sources said the Pakistan planes deliberately attacked this place because this was the media headquarter of the RF. Pakistan did not want more media war because of the RFs gaining popularity and it was during this bombing of the media headquarters that Fahim Dashty, a well-known Afghan journalist and spokesperson of the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan
Dashty was also killed, sources added.
Last week, a report came out detailing Ahmad Masoud’s undeniable cooperation with the French and Israeli intelligence services.
That report is what sealed his fate, and that report was what gave the Taliban the green light to enter Panjshir.
The ‘Resistance’ by the boy lion, gave no resistance in the end, and all the heads of that movement climbed on to 2 helicopters and fled to Tajikistan.
The Taliban categorically deny Pakistani involvement.
The Iranian foreign ministry has condemned the entire Panjshir campaign by the Taliban.
Afghanistan needs peace and stability right now.
The Israeli-backed ‘Resistance’ in Panjshir was meant to destabilize the situation.
Iran made all possible efforts to protect the Tajik, Persian-speaking people of Panjshir from Taliban violence and aggression.
The ‘Resistance’ in Panjshir could not be allowed to drag on. It had to be neutralized ASAP.
The Afghans sent out invitations for their government unveiling ceremony yesterday. Russia, China, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, and Qatar are at the top of the list of invitees.
If you were the Taliban, and you had to ask one of the above to intervene, to quickly put down a dangerous Israeli conspiracy, who would you ask? Russia and China would have declined. Qatar is not a fighting nation. Turkey would have accepted, and then demanded the keys to the country. Iran could not be asked to attack ethnic Persians. Who does that leave? The USA?
Obviously, as we adjust to the new reality of a Taliban-ruled Afghanistan, the least we could expect was an inclusive government in Kabul, which now doesn’t seem likely given the current announcement regarding government formation.
The Haqqani Network faction of the Taliban have pushed back those in charge of Doha political process, it is now quite evident that the Taliban government will only represent the aspirations of Pashtuns, whose total population is around 30 per cent in the country. This means that the Kabul government may have no truck with the minority Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks, what to talk of women and other groups.
The statement that Taliban will be the voice of (Sunni) Muslims throughout the world, as indicated by their spokesman, indicates that they will weaponize Islam to achieve their ends through violence and politicizing the region. That Taliban refuses to end its filial ties with Salafi groups like Al Qaeda and Lashkar-e-Taiba is a sure indicator that they want to be the true representative of Sunni Islam.
While Pakistan with the covert support of British intelligence is the via media between the Taliban and the western world, the presence of ISI super spy in Kabul shows that the Taliban are mere proxy of Rawalpindi. The British through the Chief of Defence Staff Nick Carter and its external Intelligence had role in stitching out the one-way peace deal in favour of the Taliban.
Taking into consideration the various points raised in the discussion, there is a possibility that Pakistan will have a major say in the new government in Kabul through its proxy the Huqqani Network which has now emerged as the dominant power in the Taliban (Sirajuddin Haqqani was named Interior Minister and will be in charge of all the internal security of Afghanistan).
To imagine that the Taliban has truly changed, and will become accommodative, is like asking for the moon, after all, a leopard does not change its spots.
And how long is this “still can not form a government”? Does it take much longer than in the west, where war isn’t raging?
A few days before 911, and the final withdrawal of their soldiers, George W. Bush, Barak Obama, Donald Trump and Joe Biden are made to see with their own eyes conclusive scenes of humiliation, withdrawal, despair and failure. – AL QATARI NEWSPAPER