Editorial: We cannot abandon Afghanistan to medieval ignorance and horror

The world must hold the Taliban to account, and a well-funded UN programme should help to assess what the country needs now

22nd August, 2021
Editorial: We cannot abandon Afghanistan to medieval ignorance and horror
The West’s failure in Afghanistan is so comprehensive that there is more than enough of it to go around, from an excessive reliance on military firepower to the ambivalence of many of the protagonists. Picture: Getty

The graveyard of empires has claimed the ultimate casualty. This time the defeated party in Afghanistan is not just a foreign occupying force, but the West’s entire rationale for its two-decade presence in that country.

The chaotic scenes at Kabul airport in the past few days testified to the strategic miscalculations, neocolonial bombast, moral cluelessness and wishful thinking that marked every stage of the mission.

The West’s failure in Afghanistan is so comprehensive...

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