(Way Forward or Reverse Backward)

Naser Koshan


Is Afghanistan able to withstand the increasing insurgency it is facing post 2014 or it will fall into the hands of the very same tyrants who were toppled by the U.S in 2001?

We have definitely come a long way in terms of building the initial infrastructure in our civil and military platforms which could somehow give us the assurance of dealing with any disturbances post the exit of the U.S. troops in 2014; however, these institutions are rather fragile and shaky to depend on.

The prevailing Afghan government with the influx of billions of dollars in aid to prepare itself for rendering security to its own citizen’s seems to be in an odd situation to tackle all those valid challenges it will unquestionably face in the absence of the international troops 2014 onwards.; now, the states’ spokesmen have already declared their preparedness for the withdrawal and have repeatedly rejected any report of collapsing down and falling into the hands of the Taliban and Al Qaeda. 

No doubt, we have to believe in our capabilities as there is no way we would be ever willing to return to a dark tyrant regime and suffer into the hands of the very same people who not only left us a decade behind but also destroyed the very essence of Afghan historic reputation and rich cultural values. This only leaves us with the only option of embracing a coherent democracy and lay the foundation for a robust and dynamic civil society and economy.

In fact, sometimes crisis bring the best out of people, as a suppressed nation we have to value our grieving past and honor the huge price paid in the last three decades to live in an average peaceful environment and not allow the same fraction who made us suffer and are still ridiculing us with their shallow populist slogans to take over at any cost. We should be clever enough to have found out the reason that keeps us apart and gives our enemy the incentive to disunite us. We have to put our mind and energy in how to embrace each others’ thoughts, as no matter how large we may differ ideologically, we will still find a common ground when it comes to our national interest and territorial sovereignty.

As mostly Muslim countries are unstable, observing countries like Egypt, Pakistan and Turkey who have managed to develop sophisticated and well-disciplined armed forces are much likely to hold out any riot or uprising threatening their national security. No matter what may happen in these particular countries their armed forces is always on full alert to dismantle any possible threats and restore law and order in a peaceful manner.  In Afghanistan, we have to furbish our armed forces with the very same incentive of being the ultimate protector of public security regardless of any changes in the political leadership. Personally, I strongly believe in an independent, impartial and politically disoriented armed forces who should have the autonomy to shape its own policies, of course national security being the main concern.  A goal driven armed forces that is capable of neutralizing any national security threats in the future even if it requires toppling a malfunctioning leadership in power.

In case, if security threats are posed by neighboring states, it should be the military to address the issue with its counterpart on the other side and take necessary measures for any counter defiance in the future. I am pretty sure that the ongoing shelling of Pakistani artillery on Kunar and Nuristan provinces is solely carried out at the discretion of their army with no knowledge of the civilian government in Islamabad. We have to have the same approach in response to such incidents which is only possible if we implement the same operational structure within our armed forces.  Most recently the Afghan president pleaded for heavy weaponry from the U.S. government, but the U.S. reluctance to provide such modern warfare to the Afghan armed forces is the suspicion over their trustworthiness especially after the increasing green on blue attacks (insider attacks) and our leadership’s incompetence in the last ten years to form a well-disciplined and vision-oriented army. However, we are proud of what we have.

The prevailing security turmoil in Afghanistan demands pragmatic security ministers who shall be willing to allocate a bulk of their time visiting their servicemen and women to booster their confidence and acknowledge their service and bravery to their motherland, unfortunately, as an Afghan I do not recall a mere incident of high ranking defense ministry officials or generals paying frequent visits to these checkpoints across the country. It is critical that the only prospect to envision a stable and prosperous Afghanistan post 2014 is through maintaing a steadfast, disciplined and politically disoriented armed forces only and only loyal to our national security and public safety. In fact, it is only a goal-driven army that would be able to deal with any possible threat or insurgency in the country and prevent any social kiosk in the foreseeable future.

Author: Naser “Koshan”

Washington, U.S. 2012