US President Biden’s announcement that his country will initiate its full withdrawal from Afghanistan on 1 May and complete it by the twentieth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks presents the perfect opportunity to reflect on America’s top failures there over the past two decades:
Topple the Taliban
Not only does the Taliban still control a significant swath of Afghanistan, but it’s poised to return to power through peaceful means via the planned establishment of an inclusive transitional government.
While Al Qaeda’s reported capabilities to plan international attacks from Afghan soil have successfully been destroyed, the entrance of ISIS to the battlefield from 2014 onward means that such threats still remain.
Build a “democratic” Afghanistan
Far from being the regional beacon of Western-style “democracy” that America envisioned, modern-day Afghanistan is a cesspool of anti-democratic practices, corruption, and extra-judicial killings.
Support human rights
Some women now enjoy broader rights in line with the new socio-political model externally imposed upon parts of the country, but many Afghans have also fallen victim to the occupiers’ vicious human rights abuses.
Extract rare earth minerals
Despite having an estimated $1 trillion of rare earth minerals under its soil, the Western occupation forces have failed to extract these on any large enough scale to make a strategic difference due to Taliban attacks.
Destabilize the Central-South-West Asian regions
Late US National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski’s plans to divide and rule those three regions through externally provoked “Balkanization” processes didn’t succeed due to the targeted states’ Hybrid War resilience.
Read more: Obtaining situation in Afghanistan
Avoid a Vietnam 2.0 scenario
The US ignobly repeated the same Vietnam scenario that it hoped to avert by ultimately withdrawing from Afghanistan following a dishonorable defeat at the hands of militarily less sophisticated foes.
All told, the US spectacularly failed to accomplish anything of significance in Afghanistan. None of its objectives, whether stated or speculated, succeeded. The only ones who benefited from this war were the military-industrial complex and especially those within it who stole at least $19 billion in public funds.
Andrew Korybko is a political analyst, radio host, and regular contributor to several online outlets. He specializes in Russian affairs and geopolitics, specifically the US strategy in Eurasia. The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.