Afghanistan after 18 Years of US Occupation
Flawed strategies, ambiguous policies and the way forward
Mairaj ul Hamid Nasri
The United States has completed its 18 years in Afghanistan. On 07th of October 2001, it attacked this country by launching ‘Operation Enduring Freedom’ here under the umbrella of NATO and backed by UN resolution 1368 with an apparent aim to dethrone Taliban and dismantle Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. Although the US dethroned Taliban within a few weeks, and pushed them to the mountains, it could not cut their roots in the Afghan society completely due to flawed strategies and inconsistent policies. President Bush in his victory speech had claimed that US forces have killed the dragon and they will now search out snakes in the jungle. Unfortunately, after the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the Afghan war became “the other war”. During first few years in Afghanistan, the US was unable to understand the challenges posed by Afghanistan’s insurgency. Their “Counterinsurgency Doctrine” was fatally flawed for they failed to neutralize Taliban, dismantle al-Qaeda completely, and transforming Afghans into a strong nation.
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