Civil War threatens Afghanistan as NATO prepares to leave
By Jawed Rostapoor - Fri Jan 11 2013, 12:29 pm
Majority of the Afghan lawmakers during recent sessions expressed concerns regarding complete withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan despite a number of them were criticizing the NATO troops presence in Afghanistan and were accusing them of on-going war in the country and against the Afghan government.
However the lawmakers are now saying that the security situation will become tense if NATO troops completely leave Afghanistan.
A number of the lawmakers also warned that the Afghan government’s weakness towards security will not be fulfilled within the next one year and the Afghan security forces will not be able to take full security lead after NATO troops leave the country.
However there are also tense concerns by a number of Afghan lawmakers who are saying that Afghanistan will become a ground for
civil war which will pave the way for the return of terrorism backed by regional spy agencies.
Analysts also also believe that the withdrawal of the NATO troops from Afghanistan will have negative impacts both for Afghanistan and International community.
Zero Option, assessment of US troops pullout:
The United States of America recently said Washington is considering to review zero option or complete withdrawal of the US troops from Afghanistan despite the US general in Afghanistan proposed to leave a portion of the troops in Afghanistan to train Afghan army and police.
In the meantime Afghan defense ministry recently also pointed towards specific issues of the Afghan security forces. Afghan defense minister Bismillah Mohammadi recently said that the Afghan army faces problems in four phases including lack of air force, lack of proper intelligence, lack of heavy military equipment and also Afghan security forces face problems towards
Afghan defense minister said the international community had its cooperation towards the equipment and training of the Afghan army however they have not received modern air force equipments so far and Afghan security forces needs a long term commitment from the international community towards professional training.
Corruption preventing capabilities growth:
Recently a delegation of eight officials including three Afghan senators prepared a report which showed over 2,500 weapons and 50 vehicles were lost by Afghan police in eastern Nuristan province.
Hafiz Abdul Qayoum head of the lawmaking and anti-graft commission in Afghan senate who visited Nuristan province said they have received reports regarding the disappearance of 2,500 to 2,700 weapons and around 50 vehicles from Nuristan.
There are concerns that the weapons and vehicles have been given to Taliban militants since a number of the Afghan senators are concerned regarding growing corruption in Afghan security institutions which will prevent Afghan security forces to be independent and fully capable of taking security lead by 2014.
US troops pullout not a wise decision:
In the meantime a former German general who served in Afghanistan under the NATO-led international security assistance force denied the complete pullout of US troops from Afghanistan considering the situation and the security agreement which will be signed between Kabul and Washington in the near future that will allow US military bases and troops in Afghanistan beyond 2014.
He said it will not be a wise decision to take all US troops out of Afghanistan since there is a critical need of foreign troops presence.
Green on Blue attacks, lack of confidence reasons behind NATO pullout:
There are also reports that the growing insider attacks by Afghan troops on their international counterpart is one of the main reasons which forces NATO troops to leave Afghanistan.
Dozens of NATO troops have been killed following green on blue attacks during the past two years. An Afghan woman police office recently also opened fire on a US advisor in Afghan interior ministry but the German general insists that NATO should leave Afghanistan until the mission was not completed. He warned that the consequences of immediate withdrawal of NATO troops will claim more sacrfices in the future.
He also insisted that the international community had considerable achievements during the past ten years and the international community must not leave Afghanistan leaving their mission incomplete due to Afghan security forces mistakes or infiltration by insurgents which leads to insider attacks on NATO troops.
The German general also emphasized that the Afghan and NATO officials should work closely to prevent infiltration of the militants among the Afghan security forces to reduce or stop insider attacks.
Less achievements, high expenditure:
Despite the western troops casualties in Afghanistan during the past ten years is relatively smaller than the former Soviet Union forces casualties however NATO troops mission in Afghanistan is considered to be less successful where no considerable achievements have been noted despite the Afghan war is said to be one of the most costly war for US and its allies.
According to the German general NATO has committed a number of mistakes in Afghanistan during the past ten years since they were cooperating with the wrong individuals in Afghanistan.
He pointed towards international communities cooperation with the warlords as an example and insisted that the foreigners should support the civil society of Afghanistan which is not having a negative background.
The German general also emphasized that the repeated mistakes by international community during the past ten years resulted in more expenses and efforts but the outcome was not satisfactory as was expected.
He said it is still not too late and it is important the presidential election in 2014 should be appropriately organized and more work should be done to support the civil society.
Polls and Survey, Public views:
In the meantime several surveys and polls have been conducted through social media networks such as Facebook regarding strategic agreement between Afghanistan and United States to find out if the pact was in favor of Afghanistan or not, but the poll results show more positive views.
Similar polls were also conducted by media networks and other social activists asking regarding the presence of NATO troops beyond 2014 and result shows that more participants have given positive votes.
An Afghan journalist in his Facebook page conducted a poll regarding the security agreement between Kabul and Washington which showed that 20% of the voters were thinking that the presence of NATO troops was not in favor of Afghanistan while 80% of the participants voted for the presence of NATO troops.
Presence of NATO troops is a need:
In the meantime Afghan officials are continuously assuring that the international community will not abandon Afghanistan but concerns among the Afghans specifically the Afghan parliament once again raised after Washington announced of possible complete withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and it seems that the Afghan lawmakers are sensitive regarding the consequences and risks which threatens Afghanistan following the withdrawal of the NATO troops.
On the other economical issues and reduction in foreign aid, lack of employment and growing unemployment rate, Afghan refugees being forced to return by neighboring countries, graft, lack of capabilities of the Afghan security forces are the facts which threatens Afghanistan beyond 2014.
But the major concern is interference of neighboring countries of Afghanistan specifically Pakistan and Iran who are trying to destabilize the country once NATO troops leave since the Afghan people will face major economic crisis despite Afghan security forces will continue to their efforts to fight terrorism and insurgency with low wages but the continued interference of the neighboring countries will finally force Afghans to end up giving sacrifices for the supporters of terrorism and puppets of the regional spy agencies.
Therefore the Afghan government officials, political parties, civil society organizations and political observers should jointly work considering the current situation to protect the national benefits and ensure a fair and free presidential election in a bid to guarantee the future political system of Afghanistan, and must discuss the issue of NATO troops presence in Afghanistan beyond 2014 to ensure that the regional spy agencies and terror groups have no other options for turning Afghanistan into militants safe havens.