“The Taliban is not the North Vietnamese army. There’s gonna be no circumstance where you see people being lifted off the roof of a embassy of the United States from Afghanistan.”— US President Biden, July 2021
Kabul has fallen. Thousands are fleeing. Tens of thousands more are terrified about their future. The religious fundamentalist Taliban has prevailed. And all after twenty years of American occupation, drone attacks, gulags, supposed “reforms.” It’s time to acknowledge that everything the American Empire has touched in the last half century and more has resulted in untold misery for millions of people in the Global South, and most especially in Afghanistan.
But the wealthiest, most powerful, empire the world has ever known did not fail. Indeed, it succeeded handsomely while it was profitable. Human rights have always served as a glossy cover for exploitation. When it got too costly, the empire withdrew. This historical moment attests to this.
Yet, most Americans have shown little interest in the fact that it was their government that sent Afghanistan in its trajectory toward religious fundamentalism decades ago. And all because they feared the dreaded specter of Soviet “communism.” The US (CIA) supported and funded the religious extremists that laid the foundation for the Taliban. Now, 20 years later, after failing in every one of its stated goals, it simply leaves.
And, of course, it should leave. In fact, it should have never started this war or occupied the region in the first place. But it did. And this is the result.
By and large, American liberals are ignoring this moment.
By and large, American conservatives are thirsting for more blood, even though NOTHING was accomplished from the 20 year reign of drone terror they imposed on the region.
By and large, American leftists are laughing smugly at the failure of this murderous American imperial military adventure, even as thousands of people flee for their lives.
I think the lesson is clear. The world has had enough of American policy. All of it… liberal, conservative, leftist, and everything in between.
Seriously, America. Just go away.
Kenn Orphan, August 2021
*Photo: Americans airlifted from Kabul as Taliban sweeps through capital. Source: Reuters.
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You’re not correct about Soviet state communism. While some rights were indeed protected and advanced, few would argue that religious freedoms were guaranteed in any part of the USSR.
The state advocated the destruction of religion, and to achieve this goal, it officially denounced religious beliefs as superstitious and backward.The Communist Party destroyed churches, synagogues and mosques, ridiculed, harassed, incarcerated and executed religious leaders, flooded the schools and media with anti-religious teachings, and it introduced a belief system called “scientific atheism,” with its own rituals, promises and proselytizers. According to some sources, the total number of Christian victims under the Soviet regime has been estimated to range around 12 to 20 million. And at least 106,300 Russian clergymen were executed between 1937 and 1941. (Wikipedia)
And for LGBTQ people: “In the 1930s, after the criminalisation of homosexuality in the Soviet Union, the Stalinist Communist International became permeated with homophobia and in almost all those countries where Stalinist regimes came to power, homosexuality was criminalised, from Eastern Europe, to China, to Cuba. This only began to change under the pressure of the growing gay rights movement, especially on the back of the 1968 movement.”
The lives of women and LGBTQ people under state communism was likely better than they are now once more under the Taliban in Afghanistan. While the USA/UK occupation was more about accruing wealth than anything positive for the people, it must be acknowledged that any theocracy will deny its citizens most freedoms.
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Thanks. Point taken. This was/is really just a rant. But I edited it because I do not wish to present anything ahistorical.
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