Afghanistan, amid the withdrawal of US troops, is coming under the control of the Taliban, and this is an important lesson for Ukraine – Igar Tyshkevich

In Afghanistan, the exacerbation continues, caused by the withdrawal of US troops from the country… Traffic Taliban take control more and more new settlements, and Tajikistan, against the background of the growing escalation of the conflict in neighboring Afghanistan, intends mobilize 20 thousand reservists to strengthen the common border.

Why did this situation arise and how can it unfold further? What conclusions should Ukraine draw for itself on the example of Afghanistan? Your opinion with “By telegraph“shared the expert of the program” International and Domestic Politics “of the analytical center Ukrainian Institute of the Future Igar Tyshkevich.

“It is already obvious that Afghanistan will, to one degree or another, go under the control of the Taliban. The fact that the Taliban declare their readiness for peace talks speaks of their strong position. Let me remind you that earlier the United States held separate negotiations with the Taliban with minimal participation of local pro-American authorities. Were confident in the preservation of the American power shield. They were mired in internal conflicts, did not build infrastructures – from military to civilian, “explains Igar Tyshkevich.

According to him, the “efficiency” of the work of local administrations in Afghanistan is evidenced by the fact that the Americans have “pumped” $ 900 billion into Afagan over the past 20 years. Of which no more than 200 billion were spent on financing the actual military operation.

“For the remaining money, you can build a country from scratch – there would be a desire. But it was not. As a result, we have a natural result, which led to the weak management skills of local elites, their unwillingness to rebuild state institutions,” the expert emphasizes. realizing that they need to build relations with other states, they are trying to demonstrate their constructive position. On the one hand, they control most of the territory of Afghanistan. On the other hand, they do not mind reaching a political agreement with the country’s leadership. the benefit of the Taliban. And given the split among the pro-American elites in Afghanistan, this will be all the more in favor of the Taliban – you can use the interests of various groups to your advantage. “

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“In the mountains, the plane has no air to catch on, but it has to land and take off in a spiral,” – Ukrainian military pilots on the mission in Afghanistan (photo)

The situation that developed with the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan is similar, according to Igar Tyshkevich, to the situation with the withdrawal of Soviet troops from there in the late 1980s.

“Then it also seemed that the Afghan government had a certain potential. The USSR and the United States assured that there would be a peace process. But everything turned out quite differently. I think that the central government will be swept away over the next five years – peacefully or militarily. USA Afghanistan will not become such an event in terms of influence as for the Soviet Union (one of the fatal ones), but it is a painful prick in pride, political image, and financial sense. ”Let me remind you that the United States entered Afghanistan 20 years ago to defeat the Taliban . And how did the operation, which lasted two decades, end? A peace treaty with the Taliban, who will most likely control the whole of Afghanistan, “the expert notes.

This situation, according to Igar Tyshkevich, is a good lesson for the Ukrainian elite. He emphasizes that the Afghan elites had an incomparably larger security umbrella provided by the superpower than Ukraine today. In terms of funding, military assistance, international legitimization of external protection (after all, there were not only Americans in Afghanistan).

“But the obtained margin of safety, the assistance provided were not used to create powerful state institutions, for the institutional restructuring of the state. There was a hope that the” shield “will always be. See the parallels? Ukraine says that it is protecting Europe from Russia. And the Afghan authorities said they are protecting Central Asia and the Middle East from Islamic extremism. They really fought, defended. But at the same time they did not engage in the creation of a powerful state, hoping that there will always be financial support from the United States and other partners. That there will always be a security umbrella. And they did not try to analyze the foreign policy balance of power. “says Igar Tyshkevich.” And when the US began negotiations with the Taliban, the Afghan elites thought it was not serious. Because they are so important, they are protecting. But it turned out a little differently. “

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According to the expert, the key conclusion for Ukraine is the following: if we want to survive as an independent state – with our own culture, the ability to make decisions ourselves, then the current support from international partners should be used, but not feed ourselves with fairy tales that it will be eternal, because we are so wonderful, such defenders. We ourselves should strengthen and reform ourselves as much as possible.

“Support will be provided if and only when the interests of external players are taken into account. We must play on these interests – and make the most of all opportunities to strengthen ourselves. So that in case all external support suddenly disappears, this will not become the end of the world for us, as it has practically become for the Afghan elites, “sums up Igar Tyshkevich.

Interviewed by Telegraph experts assessed the positive and risks of the decision of the United States and NATO to withdraw troops from Afghanistan.


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