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Thursday, February 15, 2024

US Afghan engagement depict “sheer tragedies and losses”: Putin

Russian President Putin criticizes US 20-year engagement in Afghanistan which depict tragedies and sheer losses for Washington and Afghan people. He claims that the US achieved zero results as its regime change endeavors were all in vain.

Russian leader, Putin, on Wednesday highlighted that US Afghan engagement depict “sheer tragedies and losses” for Washington and Afghan people. He claims that the 20-year military involvement of US and its NATO allies led in “zero” results as situation in Afghanistan worsened. The US attempts to ingrain western democratic rules and norms, foster regime change and clear Afghan soil from terrorism were all in vain.

Sheer tragedies and losses define US Afghan engagement

Speaking on Wednesday at a meeting with teenagers in the Russian far eastern city of Vladivostok to mark the start of the school year, he said: “American troops were present on that territory (of Afghanistan) for 20 years, and over those 20 years they were trying – this can be said without offending anyone – to civilize the local people, but in fact, to impose their norms and standards of life in the broadest sense of this word, including the political organisation of society.

“The only result is tragedies and losses for those who were doing that – for the United States – and especially for the people who live on the territory of Afghanistan. This is a zero result, if not negative as it is impossible to impose anything from outside”.

Read more: The US in Afghanistan: A tale of follies & miscalculations

US Afghan engagement was futile attempt, criticizes Putin 

The Russian leader has a track record of criticizing Western countries for trying to impose their values on non-Western nations and Moscow has regularly slammed US policy in Afghanistan, which is now controlled by the Taliban after its takeover.

The group shocked Western leaders and observers with its rapid advance ahead of the American pullout on August 31. Such hasty pull-out underscore Putin’s sheer criticism on US Afghan engagement that brought Washington and Afghan people only loss of lives and money.

Read more: US suffers worst loss in Afghanistan since 2011 in Kabul Airport attack

Putin fears “spill-over” radical Islam after futile US Afghan engagement

Last week, Putin said Russia would not interfere in Afghanistan and that Moscow had learned from the Soviet occupation of the country. Moscow fought a 10-year war in Afghanistan that ended with the Soviet troops’ withdrawal in 1989.

Putin has also complained about Western countries trying to place Afghan refugees in Moscow-allied Central Asian states, fearing that “radical Islam” would spill over into nations he is friendly with.

At the same time, Moscow has been cautiously optimistic about the new leadership in Kabul, saying it would not meddle in domestic affairs. But at home, the Taliban is still registered as a “terrorist” organization.

Read more: Afghanistan crisis a pyrrhic victory for Russia as risks loom, warns experts

Russian support for Afghan rebuilding

Russia has evacuated hundreds of people from Afghanistan and plans to lay on further flights, while Putin’s special representative on Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, said last week that Moscow’s embassy was working to establish relations with Afghanistan’s new Taliban rulers.

Russia was ready to help rebuild Afghanistan’s economy, Kabulov said, urging Western nations not to freeze the Afghan government’s financial assets.

“We are establishing ties (with Taliban officials), our embassy in Kabul is working quite actively on this,” he told Russian state television. “We have had such contacts for a long time and we will work further on them.”

Recently, a Russian official dismissed any resistance efforts to the Taliban, saying there is no real alternative to the group.