One of the more cogent topics in politics right now is the terrible situation in Afghanistan. The United States bears responsibility for the situation unfolding the way it has and we owe to the people of Afghanistan to make things right.
If you flip on the news right now, you’ll no doubt here both left-leaning and right-leaning news criticizing President Joe Biden about his response to the international crisis going on in Afghanistan. For those who have been sleeping under a rock, the terrorist organization the Taliban has taken over the country of Afghanistan with the Afghan government fleeing the country and the Afghan military fleeing their posts. The military fled so quickly they left most of their equipment, some of which was provided by the United States military. This is Biden’s first major crisis unique to his presidency and he has received much criticism about his response.
The war in Afghanistan is older than some people alive today. The conflict in the central Asian country began when the United States invaded Afghanistan to try and topple any control various Islamic radical terrorist groups such as the Taliban and Al-Qaeda may have had. The war has mostly been fought by the United States, NATO, and insurgents from the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. After an initial successful conflict against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, the United States maintained an occupying force in Afghanistan with the intent of training the Afghan military and providing them with state-of-the-art tools for defense. Unfortunately, this idealistic mission did not actually come to pass.
For the past 20 years, the United States has meddled endlessly in the affairs of countries in the Middle East, not the least of which is Afghanistan. We have made literal targets of Afghan civilians because we decided that training ordinary people to fight rather than the people whose job it is to fight was a good solution. The worst part is now we’re taking the sweet time that these people don’t have to simply mull over the possibility of providing these civilians who helped us fight with Visas to the United States so that they can escape the absolute death they will face at the hands of the new Taliban run government. People who put their lives on the line and continue to do so for an occupying army can’t even get definite transport from certain death because the American political machine is so concerned with Reagan era ideas on immigration and refugees. It’s despicable.
The issue that many are running with deals with refugees from Afghanistan. A lot of TV minutes is being devoted to fearmongering about Afghan refugees “invading” your community. This is a horrible position to take. Firstly, it implies that the refugees are inherently going to make your community worse which is just a racist concept in and of itself. Secondly, the United States, under both Democrat and Republican Presidents, bears responsibility for the nightmare unfolding in Afghanistan. Our distinct lack of any game plan, training method, or exit strategy for the past 20 years as contributed more harm than good in the region. The foreign policy on Afghanistan has essentially been about maintaining a war machine that benefits only weapons contractors and oligarchs, rather than improving the lives of the Afghan people.
The only morally upright solution to this predicament is to accept every fully vetted refugee from Afghanistan or partner with other countries to relocate them to safe havens where they can begin to rebuild their lives. The vast majority of American people cannot imagine what it’s like to have your society and government change by hostile military takeover despite the United States government incessant meddling in the self-determination of other nations. We must make this right for the people of Afghanistan. Not the government of Afghanistan, the people. If there are refugees that resettle in Pittsburg, we must welcome them with open arms because we have absolutely no idea what they are going through. We must be as charitable and loving as we would with our current neighbors as new ones.