What would you say to a person, let’s call them Sam, who every day for 20 years spent 300 million dollars to barbarically beat a poor, young boy and destroying his ability to rebuild his life — all for a crime his uncle may or may not have committed.
Now let’s say this same individual, Sam, after committing war crime after war crime much greater in magnitude than the crime for which he went to war, robs the young orphan, who is now practically on his deathbed, of his life savings — a meagre seven billion dollars and equal to just 20 days expenditure of Sam’s 20 year ‘war on terror’.
Not only that, after robbing him, has the audacity to then ‘donate’ half of the money — not his money — but money he has just stolen to prolong the young boy’s agony for a few more days, while reserving the other half — of again not his money — to bandage a cut, now a scar, inflicted some twenty years ago supposedly by the boy’s uncle.
If you think the story ends here you’d be mistaken.
All the while this robbery is going on, you’d imagine that Sam would attempt to escape the scene of the crime, which he did unceremoniously on August 2021, but only retreated to a distance from which he propelled poisonous gas canisters at the half destroyed shack, preventing any help from reaching the sickly boy, including the $3.5 billion dollars Sam ‘generously’ just ‘donated’.
Who is Sam and who is the young boy?
The boy represents the millions of Afghans now on the verge of collapse as a bitter cold winter threatens the death of 1 million children in just two months. Ninety-five percent of Afghans don’t have enough to eat and nearly nine million, a quarter of its population, are at risk of starvation.
In the midst of this humanitarian disaster, the US through its poisonous economic foreign policy, has turned this crisis into an utter catastrophe.
“We comfort ourselves by saying we are the largest donor to the Afghanistan relief effort, but we are also a major reason the crisis is dire in the first place, and we continue to be,” Ezra Klein, editor at The Washington Post.
Since the Taliban took over the country in August, the US levied sanctions on Afghanistan, blocking much needed capital flowing into the country from foreign banks and corporations who refused to transfer money to Kabul, fearing hefty fines and breaching their own sanctions. They also withdrew their citizens and other Western funding from Afghanistan, which until August accounted for almost 75 percent of the Afghan state budget.
As if that wasn’t enough, they froze or to be more accurate stole $7 billion of what is not just “frozen assets” but the entire reserve of the Afghan central bank, money that legally belongs to the Afghan people, not the Taliban or the US government, the Afghan people, 15 percent of whom have been displaced as a result of the war.
The result of this theft is that without funds to back its currency, the Afghan banking system will lose whatever shred of credibility it has left, Afghan banks will no longer be able to transact with those abroad and businesses will have no access to credit to run or pay its employees. Humanitarian organisations need access to banks and without them, no aid can enter (including Biden’s ‘generous donation’) and most have had to cease operations altogether.
“The current humanitarian crisis could kill far more Afghans than the past 20 years of war,” David Miliband, president of the International Rescue Committee, wrote recently.
Biden, with this one decision, will accomplish what decades of war failed to do: Obliterate whatever remains of the Afghan economy and people. If he pursues this action, history will remember him as the spiteful artist, sour at being bested by a people much less sophisticated than he, and responsible for drawing a painting eerily familiar to another sketched almost exactly a century ago, one named Weimar Germany.
The trajectory that Afghanistan is heading towards is a scenario last seen during the Great Depression of the 1920’s, and one that, according to Biden’s understanding of history, had little to do with the rise of extreme ideologies like the ‘Nazis’ who feasted on the economic strife plaguing German society. Why else would he hold the same devastating paintbrush that drenched the German canvas in blood as the Western powers abused their supremacy and imposed The Treaty of Versailles on the German people, ‘punishing’ them for the crimes of WWI.
The crippling effect the Treaty had on the German economy and people led to hyperinflation on a scale never seen before, and a climate ripe for Hitler to rise and ultimately provoke WWII. Is this what Biden is hoping for? To cripple Afghanistan, trap it in a cycle of debt and reliance of foreign aid, weaken its government (The Taliban) and pressure it by punishing innocent civilians, blame the descent into chaos on them, and then swoop in again as a ‘knight in shining armour’ with perhaps another war?
Surely if this was truly a war against terror, the US would not dare to create an exact or if not worse replica of the same situation that proved itself to be a breeding ground for terrorism.
This reality should make you question why the US went into Afghanistan in the first place, and whether they had even a shred of virtuous intention, or was it all self-serving interests camouflaged under a white (supremacist) saviour complex?
The Afghan people do not need the US’ help and do not want to be ‘saved’. The US has killed nearly a quarter million Afghans since 9/11. Most of these victims were ordinary civilians and nearly half of all civilian airstrike casualties were children. If you really want to save them, why steal from them? And why not pay reparations for the millions of victims you left behind?
In one sentence, for those of you who do not know why the US went into Afghanistan, it was nothing more than the story described at the beginning of this article, the moral of which is: American blood is worth more than any other. And cruelty, theft and oppression can be easily disguised as mercy, charity and justice with the right marketing tactics.
Biden’s actions are akin to the government seizing the bank accounts of poor Londoners and then giving the money back as welfare benefits. I repeat this point again as the ludicrousness of the situation and silence on what could constitute pillage — an international war crime — is deafening.
“The 9/11 victims deserve justice but not from the Afghan people who themselves became pawns caught in the middle of the US-led ‘war on terror’…” said Adam Weinstein, research fellow at the Quincy Institute, who also served as a US marine in Afghanistan.
Could the US Government not find $3.5billion out of the $3 trillion it spent to go to war with Afghanistan for the 9/11 victims?
Innocent Afghan civilians are not responsible for the crises Afghanistan faces today nor are they responsible for the tragedy that hit the twin towers. None of the 19 hijackers who carried out the September 11 attacks came from Afghanistan, and not one of the 39 million people living in Afghanistan were involved in the incident, and so why is Biden forcing them to pay for a crime they did not commit?
The one truly responsible is the one who armed a nation, then destroyed it, and after it had done so, with one hand reached into whatever was left in the pockets of the world’s poorest country and with the other suffocated it through barbaric economic sanctions that have put the millions of rounds of brutal bullets fired during the war to shame.
This executive order is the US’ vengeance against the Taliban, who gained one-up on them, disguised as charity, and will claim the lives of millions of innocent men, women and children. While this is happening, so-called human rights activists are preoccupied with pushing for more ‘education and women’s rights’ (which are important but nowhere near as important as this issue) while condemning the human rights record of the Taliban. The irony.
Those that engage in propagating this absurd conversation right after their government has killed the fathers, brothers and sons of the very same women they seek to protect and then rob them in broad daylight, will also be held responsible for what is to come.
Why? They intentionally or unintentionally crowded the information market with fake feminist noise and nonsense which, amongst other red herrings, inflated the false idea that Islam is misogynistic, and Muslim women are unable to protect themselves from their oppressors. This has absolved Western governments of any responsibility, justified the US’ presence and unwarranted interventions in Afghanistan, covered up the US’s blunder and tyranny in the process, and successfully distracted the world from the real instigators and real issues facing Afghanistan now.
Clare Daly, member of the European Parliament clarified for all those unable to understand: “You can’t go to work or school if you’re starving or if you’re dead.”
This is an opinion piece written by a Guest Writer for MVSLIM.