Afghanistan's Real Victory
Recently, both Afghani warring factions have announced convincing victories in their ongoing battle for the control of Afghanistan. In late July and Early August of this year, Taliban forces launched a major summer-offensive, in which large areas under the control of the opposition alliance were captured.
Most of the newly acquired territories however, were promptly retrieved by Ahmed Shah Massood led forces, after the oppositions regrouped following their quick defeat.
According to Hussain Anwari, a spokesman for the opposition, Taliban troops were beaten and driven out from the Sangcharak district in the Sar-i-pul province earlier this week. Anwari has also claimed that the fighting is moving south of Sangcharak, only 25 miles away from the provincial capital of Sar-i-Pul.
Taliban sources have not yet commented on the opposition's up-to-date comeback, but the Taliban Agricultural Minister Maulvi Abdul Latif Mansoor has acknowledged that Taliban forces have destroyed canals, wells, and orchards on the Shomali plains, north of Kabul.
In an interview with The Associated Press on August 28, Mr. Mansoor stated, "We were forced to destroy irrigation systems and orchards in some areas where our soldiers were being targeted and killed".
While both parties appear as determined as ever to fight their war to the end, hope is fading for peace to emerge in that devastated land.
It is without a doubt that the strong moralistic imperative that propelled the Mujahideen's war against the occupying Russian forces can not be applied to the contemporary inner Afghani civil war.
Such a conclusion is not only drawn from the fact that the war was suddenly converted to clashes of interests along ethnic lines and strategic alliances, rather than ideological ones, but also because the people of Afghanistan have become the victims of those who once vowed to protect them.
In the past, The United Nations and several Muslim countries initiated several bashful attempts to curb the disastrous results of the civil war, yet they were doomed to failure.
A visible cloud of passiveness and apathy is brooding over the heads of many of those who once cheered for the Mujahideen and their heroic war stories. Many argue that what appears to be apathy is in fact the feeling of deep disappointment, in what has become the memory of the Mujahideen legendary wars.
If no foreign powers have vested interests in the continuation of the war, it is obvious that no one has any interest in stopping it either. Many Arab countries may fear that the end of the war means the return of many "Arab Afghans" who bring with them waves of violence and fanaticism.
Although the indifference of the Arab and Muslim worlds and the international community as a whole must be acknowledged, the warring Afghani factions shall never be stripped from their role in continuing the bloodshed in Afghanistan.
The latest declaration of victory on both sides indeed provokes the question: who is winning the Afghani civil war? Since the attacks and counterattacks are almost equal in their magnitude, such a question can not be easily answered.
But with certainty we can easily answer the question; who is losing the Afghani civil war? Indeed, the people of Afghanistan are the real losers. Those who were denied life, and those who were uprooted from their lands and homes truly paid the price of a war that can only be described as savage and unjustifiable.
In the last two weeks, in the Shomali plains alone, 70,000 people were forced to vacate their towns and villages and look for shelter elsewhere for the sounds of shells and bombs were quickly approaching. The human cost of the Afghani civil war is intensifying and the anguish of the innocent Afghanis is incomprehensible.
If the Afghani Mujahideen had truly fought the Russians for the sake of their people, then they must also bring an end to their own civil war for the sake of their people. Then and only then, we can confidently declare that the Afghanis have won the war.
Topics: Afghanistan, Conflicts And War, Taliban, War