Tuesday, 4 August 2015

The USA’s Second Policy Option in Afghanistan (2)


In the part (1) of this article titled “The USA’s Second Policy Option in Afghanistan” (1), we have seen that the USA’s first policy option in Afghanistan has failed, and now they may switch over to their second policy option which would have very important implications for the regional countries.

As the basic objective behind the USA’s second policy option is to create bad blood between China and Afghan Taliban, the implications of this policy option would  impact  Afghanistan the most. The first victim of this policy option would be dream of political stability in Afghanistan in near future. More precisely the USA’s second policy option would mean the USA would be ready to let Afghanistan plunge in political turmoil for many years to come, if Afghan Taliban join hands with China to make Afghanistan a part of regional integrated economic block. It may please be appreciated the USA become hostile to terrorist and militant activities, if such activities affect adversely the USA’s interests; if such activities support USA’s policy targets, the USA would like to fan such activities. The examples of Syria, Libya, Iraq and Pakistan prove this basic fact of the USA’s foreign policy. Afghanistan is very crucial for the USA’s regional and ultimately international objectives; Afghanistan may serve as the biggest hurdle in the way of likely economically integrated block consisting China and the regional Islamic countries. This block, once established, would mark the end of dominant regional influence of the USA and ultimately its dominant international influence. In other words, the USA may go to any extent to maintain its regional and international influence, and would not hesitate, for that purpose, to bring China and Afghan Taliban in conflict with each other.


The USA may use only a few most radical Afghan groups against China. Once distanced from the mainstream Taliban, such radical Afghan groups would not flinch in harboring terrorists and militants from all over the world; such situation would have serious repercussions not only for China but also for other neighboring countries of Afghanistan, particularly Central Asian States. If mainstream Taliban turn hostile to radical Afghan groups, such radical Afghan groups may also seek strength by joining hands with ISIS; such a eventuality would enhance ISIS’s strength in Afghanistan. That would mean further decrease in mainstream Afghan Taliban’s strength to overthrow Kabul regime. In addition to would-be anti-China radical Taliban, other radical Taliban groups may also join ISIS. Such an eventuality would further ensure continuity of infighting, on the one hand, between Kabul regime and mainstream Afghan Taliban and, on the other hand, between mainstream Taliban and radical Taliban or ISIS Taliban. Such an infighting and militancy in Afghanistan would suit the USA too much. Rather it would be, for the USA, an ideal situation in which all its enemies including Afghan Taliban, radical Taliban (along with militant elements harbored by these radical Taliban), and ISIS Taliban would be fighting against one another; and Afghanistan would have emerged as a biggest hurdle in the way of regional integrated economic block.

Afghanistan marred with infighting would also present very serious implications to Iran. As Afghanistan infighting may lead to emergence of even more powerful ISIS, such stronger ISIS would be a real threat to Iran and Iranian interests in Afghanistan.  

India would be no lesser happy than the USA, if Afghanistan is plunged into bloody civil war. India would be more satisfied with such a situation in Afghanistan viz a viz Kashmir dispute. As already mentioned, Pak-India friendly relations might be one of the objectives of the USA’s second policy option so that Pakistan might be pulled away from China’s economic and political circle. But now that Pakistan has gone too far in developing strategic and economic alliance with China, as is reflected in agreed Pak-China Corridor, the USA, in this changed scenario, would not be interested in getting Kashmir dispute resolved. Already USA was not ready to resolve this dispute in Pakistan’s favor; but now USA would not be interested in resolving this dispute at all. The reason is simple. The unresolved Kashmir dispute would keep India out of integrated economic block likely to be emerged in the region- Pakistan, due to its geography, would not allow India to be integrated without resolution of Kashmir dispute. As a result, India’s and USA’s interests converge in Afghanistan; both would want to see Afghanistan away from the likely regional integrated economic block.

As USA’s and India’s interests are better served through civil war in Afghanistan; Pak-China’s interests can be promoted through Afghanistan which should be a part of likely regional integrated economic block. In other words, Pak-China interests can be protected and promoted only if there is peace in Afghanistan, and if Afghan Taliban are free from infighting and maintain unity of command.

From the foregoing, it may be concluded that Afghanistan marred with infightings is not in favor of China, Pakistan, Iran and other neighboring countries of Afghanistan. Therefore all neighboring countries of Afghanistan, and specially China, Iran and Pakistan should move with unity to ensure peace in Afghanistan and to make Taliban- Kabul Regime talks a success. All these neighboring countries should also be clearer that India’s role in Afghanistan without resolution of Kashmir dispute would be more matching to the USA’s interests than to the neighboring countries’ interests.







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