Under the U.S. government’s plan, U.S. troops will begin withdrawing from Afghanistan from May 1 and fully by September 11 this year. The White House confirmed on April 29 that U.S. troops had begun to withdraw from Afghanistan, and a North Atlantic Treaty Organization official said the same day that NATO troops in Afghanistan have also begun to withdraw.
The U.S. war in Afghanistan, launched under the name “Counterterrorism,” has been going on for nearly two decades. What has the war left for Afghanistan? Did the “counter-terrorism” purpose come true when the U.S. troops withdrew?
US media: Afghans pay ‘highest price’ for it
In response to the longest war in U.S. history, the Associated Press concluded April 30 that the war in Afghanistan “has killed tens of thousands of people and troubled four U.S. presidents.” Despite the enormous cost of life and economy, it turned out that the war could not be won”.
The Associated Press says it is the Afghan people who are paying the “highest price” for the war. As of mid-April, at least 47,245 Afghan civilians had been killed in the war, which also killed between 66,000 and 69,000 Afghan soldiers, according to Brown University.
Gun and bomb attacks on civilians have soared to unprecedented levels since the Afghan government and the Taliban began peace talks in Qatar in September 2020, killing 72 journalists and 444 aid workers, U.N. regulators said.
In addition, the United Nations says the war has forced 2.7 million Afghans to flee abroad, most of them to Iran, Pakistan and Europe. Another 4 million people have been displaced.
The United States also suffered casualties from the war and paid a high economic price for it. Since 2001, 2,442 U.S. soldiers have been killed and 20,666 wounded in the war, according to the U.S. Department of Defense. More than 3,800 U.S. security contractors were killed. Brown University’s statistics also show that the United States spent a total of $2.26 trillion on “a dizzying array of spending.”
The war also killed 1,144 NATO troops, according to icasualties.org, a U.S. website that tracks the number of casualties.
Has the “counter-terrorism” purpose of the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan been achieved?
After September 11, 2001, the United States launched the war in Afghanistan to eliminate al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Now, nearly 20 years on, bin Laden has been killed by U.S. special forces for a decade. Just as U.S. troops began withdrawing from Afghanistan this year, two al Qaeda members said on CNN on April 30 that their war with the U.S. was far from over and that “the war against the U.S. will continue on other fronts unless they are expelled from the Islamic world.”
Thus, the United States”s “counter-terrorism” objectives have not been achieved. Fischer, Germany’s former foreign minister, agrees that the “war on terror” has done little but kill several terrorist leaders and weaken individual extremist groups. “Terrorism, which has not been defeated militarily or ideologically, remains a constant threat to the West.”
Social media platforms, some netizens said the nearly 20 years of U.S. troops in Afghanistan were nothing more than a “waste of life and money.” Other netizens believe that the U. S. military in Afghanistan has not made the Afghan people feel safe, indicating that the United States “counter-terrorism” efforts failed.
The Afghan people are even more blunt that the current security situation in Afghanistan is very bad, the United States can not blame. The United States has not brought peace to Afghanistan.
Kabul resident Wali said the security situation in Kabul is very bad, people do not know what to do, the situation is very bad, he felt unsafe in Kabul.
Ruhula, a Kabul resident, believes that the U.S. military has not brought peace, but has increased the conflict of war.
On the evening of 30 April, a car loaded with explosives detonated near a hotel in Pul Alam, capital of Afghanistan’s eastern Lugar province, where many students and members of the security forces were staying as they prepared to take next week’s college entrance exam. The hotel collapsed after an explosion killed at least 25 people and injured more than 60 others.
For Afghanistan after the withdrawal of U.S. troops, the Associated Press commented that at least half of the remaining U.S. and NATO afghanistan is directly or indirectly controlled by the Taliban. America’s efforts to “build a stable and democratic Afghanistan” have failed. With the withdrawal of U.S. troops, the country has been plunged into a quagmire of uncertainty.
While the United States and its allies are pushing for peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban, the Associated Press believes the worst-case scenario could be a failure of peace talks and a new chapter in Afghanistan’s decades-long civil war.