| Welcome to Global Village Space

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Pakistan not responsible for collapse of 300k strong Afghan Army

“For 20 years, successive Afghan governments laid the blame for every problem in Afghanistan on Pakistan’s doorstep,” Maliha Shahid

Dismissing a former Afghan diplomat’s allegations about its role in Afghanistan, Pakistan has said that former President Ashraf Ghani’s regime remains unable to own up to its mistakes that led its ouster.

“For 20 years, successive Afghan governments laid the blame for every problem in Afghanistan on Pakistan’s doorstep,” Maliha Shahid, spokesperson for the Pakistani embassy in Washington, said in a letter to The Wall Street Journal, adding that Islamabad was not responsible for Kabul’s actions.

She was responding to an op-ed in the newspaper by Javid Ahmad, a nonresident fellow with the Atlantic Council, a Washington-based think-tank and until recently Afghanistan’s Ambassador to the UAE.

Read more: Why BJP’s top leader wants Ashraf Ghani to live in India

Spokesperson Maliha Shahid said his op-ed in the Journal “betrays the same breathtaking lack of introspection and refusal to accept any responsibility that was the hallmark of the government he represented until Aug. 15,” when Ghani fled Kabul.

Contrary to Javid Ahmed’s claims, she pointed out, Pakistan vigorously supported, and still supports, an inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan, and on at least two occasions, joined China, Russia and the U.S. in categorically opposing any government installed by force in Afghanistan.

“The problem, as former U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and other senior U.S. officials have confirmed, was that Mr. Ghani refused to seriously negotiate a power-sharing agreement with the Taliban and believed that American talk of withdrawal was a ‘bluff’ (something Mr. Ahmed also acknowledges),” the spokesperson argued.

”Even so, the violent chaos that marked the end of the Ghani regime could have been avoided if the former president had not reneged on an agreement that would have allowed for a more orderly transition,” pointing out that the former Afghan diplomat doesn’t back up some “outlandish” claims about Pakistan’s role in the Taliban’s military offensive this summer with any evidence.

“He doesn’t explain why the vaunted Afghan security forces and intelligence services were unable to interdict a supposed ‘deluge of militant fighters’ that entered Afghanistan, she said and posed the question:

How was Pakistan responsible for the rampant corruption within the Afghan state that led U.S. officials to privately describe the Kabul regime as VICE or “a vertically integrated criminal enterprise”?

“Was Pakistan to blame for the stunning collapse of the demoralized and unpaid 300,000-strong Afghan army that had been built with $83 billion in American taxpayer money?”, she asked.

Read more: Ashraf Ghani predicted fall of ‘puppet govt’ of Kabul in 1989

“Answering these questions would require a degree of honesty and courage to own up to their mistakes that former Afghan government officials remain unable to muster,” Spokesperson Shahid added.

Courtesy: APP