Robert Fisk, reporting for the British newspaper, The Independent, insists the collapse of the Afghanistan government is closer than what most experts are stating. According to his observations, the city of Khandahar if virtually under the control of the Taliban and their check points are now in operation within fifteen miles of the capital of Kabul. “Hamid Karzai’s deeply corrupted government is almost as powerless as the Iraqi Cabinet in Baghdad’s ‘Green Zone” lorry drivers now carry business permits issued by the Taliban which operates its own courts in remote areas of the country.” In the frenzy to maintain control, Karzai’s government is executing prisoners at an ever increasing rate.
The promised “new Afghanistan” that George Bush proclaimed in 2001 in which women would now have equality has been transformed into a fundamentalist Islamic society run by men who force women to wear the burka and make it difficult for girls to attend school. Fisk was repeatedly told by Afghans they did not want the return of the Taliban, but they detest and distrust the current Afghan government. Corrupt politicians and businessmen skim off millions from outside aid so limited amounts actually reach the intended population.
Many innocent villagers are caught in a crossfire. If they are compelled to give the Taliban aid the next day soldiers arrive to claim they are collaborators and impose punishments. Fisk is cynical about the proposed 7,500 additional troops that Obama has pledged and says it will not provide any assistance. Is there need to divide Afghanistan to save part of it?