The last American soldier left Afghanistan 100 days ago. Since then, the lives of many Afghans have changed dramatically.
Samira Safari’s days have become boring and difficult. The determined Afghan woman went out every day and rushed with her cinematographer from one interview to the next. A TV reporter reported on the joyous harvest festivals in the Banjir Valley and the bloody attacks in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. In his spare time he went to restaurants and met friends. The young woman did not have much of her previous life. Today Safari spends most of his time at home.
It has been 100 days since the last American soldier left the country after nearly 20 years of war in Afghanistan. The image of Major General Chris Donahue glowing green may have been taken by an on-board camera to monitor the rear loading curve, which went around the world. One night earlier than the US government had announced, Donahue boarded the last US military cargo plane and completed the end of its international mission in Afghanistan. After their military lightning campaign, the Taliban took over Kabul two weeks ago as the last major city in the country – without even a shot. These events were a turning point for all Afghans.
When the last American soldier left the country, Safari was very worried. “Many thought the country would immediately sink into the next bloody war,” he says. This fear did not arise. But mainly Women would have lost a lotSince the departure of international troops from the country. “I was in my previous job today. All the ladies are gone except for one secretary.”
The insecurity for women is increasing
According to local media reports, the number of depressed women and girls who are unable to work or go to school is on the rise. Safari says he has no motivation today. The Taliban did not explicitly ban journalists from working – they were still at home. She is afraid of being stopped on the street by simple Taliban police officers that she is with a cinematographer – a stranger who is not in her family. Anyway, today she can not report as freely as before. In the end, you have to audit yourself.
With Safari losing its independence, it has regained Mohibullah Jihadzar. The 27-year-old joined the Taliban ten years ago and fought against the Americans and the Afghan government. Before the conquest of Islam, with his long hair and long beard, it was difficult to leave his home district of Tscharch in Logar province. “But today our country is free, we can travel anywhere. We are very happy, the whole of Afghanistan is now our home,” Jihadzar said by phone.
He has been married for the last one and a half months. He no longer constantly moves from movement to movement, but to a stable office and two or three days off a month. In his village, people rejoiced that the war was over. The evil is that the country is economically vulnerable and has not yet been recognized by the Taliban government.
The country is drowning in misery
In fact, not a single country in the world recognizes the Taliban government. Western nations demand government and guarantees for women’s rights, including representatives of other minorities and political groups.
The phrase “economic misery” is nothing more than an understatement: sanctions against the Taliban government and the frozen central bank balances in the billions are causing massive problems for the new rulers, aid agencies and ordinary Afghans. Of the pre-government aid in Kabul – about $ 8.5 billion a year, which financed about 75 percent of government spending – the absolute majority stopped – due to concerns about supporting the Taliban regime.
The consequences are somewhat catastrophic: the economy is in a free fall, the country has collapsed into a liquidity crisis. Approximately weekly, the UN. Agencies or aid agencies warn massively Humanitarian crisis, Driven by the worst drought in years. The number of starving people has increased tremendously. Local media reported that more children were due Malnutrition In the hospital. Health care is on the verge of collapse due to lack of funding, especially in rural areas.
“Afghans missed this opportunity”
Dominic Stillhard, executive chairman of the International Committee of the Red Cross, recently described Afghanistan as an “angry, man-made disaster.” On the contrary, sanctions designed to punish those in power in Kabul have cut off millions from their livelihoods.
The Taliban claim to have inherited the economic crisis from the previous government. Unemployment soared before they came to power and the financial crisis began under refugee President Ashraf Ghani. People do not believe other claims. Instead, Islamists are working to eradicate corruption. They will keep the whole country safe.
In fact, many Afghans confirm that security has been high since the Taliban came to power and that international troops have left the country. Critics of Islamists, on the other hand, argue that the number of mysterious killings is now increasing, instead of terrorist attacks. Former civil servants and officials have always lived with concern for their safety. Even petty crimes are on the rise again in the wake of rising poverty, but also the recent attacks on the Islamic State militant group claiming responsibility for itself.
Many Afghans say they have to wait until winter. After all, if the economy does not improve, all they can do is run away. For TV reporter Samira Safari, economic improvement alone is not enough. She wants to go. “If a country gets all the way, if the government suddenly collapses after 20 years, it will never change,” he says. Safari does not want to blame the current situation on Americans who have worked with other NATO nations to train Afghan military and police officers for two decades, but they have not fought back. “The Afghans missed this opportunity.”
Veronica Escher, DPA