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Biden, Johnson and the West's great betrayal of Afghanistan

I am sorry - but I feel pretty strongly that Biden has got it terribly wrong. He has not thought it through as a human being or as leader of the free world. The original aim of opening a front in Afganistan was directly responding to the World Trade Centre terror attacks. It was to defeat terrorism, capture or kill Osama bin Laden and it just happened that the Taliban were in the way and supporting Al Qaeda. Biden is correct about that. But over time, the aim and mission were changed - actually, it was fudged. The Afghan war became fused with not just the fight against terrorism but became a humanitarian mission. Whatever Biden says now - it developed into regime change and democratising a country that had fostered terrorists.

The British could attest to the impossibility of conquering Afghanistan if we bothered to look back to 1842 - another example of lessons not learned or forgotten.

The whole episode of the Afghanistan fiasco was that something good would come out of it after all. It became about "Hearts and Minds". The West was in the middle of bringing freedoms to a people who had been repressed all their lives, particularly women. That, of course, takes time - just as it takes time for an Oak tree to grow. You don't chop it down after twenty years because it hasn't grown fast enough for your liking. You nurture it and protect it, knowing that it will be able to look after itself in the fulness of time.

To my mind, what Biden and Johnson have done is a crime against humanity. You only have to look at the number of Afghani citizens who wanted to escape the brutality of the Taliban to understand that the Western powers had been doing something good and worthwhile. They were behaving like "Good Ancestors" - replacing oppression with freedom.

Now Biden has betrayed all those Afghanis who had trusted the USA to live up to its promises. Biden, Johnson - and the leaders of Europe have abandoned all those young women born in Afghanistan in the last twenty years with so much hope in their hearts.

Not to mention all those Armed Forces from so many countries who fort so bravely and lost so much to defend the principles of democracy.

Afghanistan is once again put back in the hands of those bullying, small-minded and frightened bearded men who feel so threatened by women that they have to suppress them from all forms of advancement and hide them in Burkas.

What a travesty for humankind. For all the good that Johnson and Biden may or may not do, this will mark them in history as men who failed the test of leadership and condemned so many human beings to death, torture and a life of misery.

Rick - Suffolk - UK - 17th August 2021

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