One hundred days after the disaster the problem is unsolved: dealing with thethe Taliban devil? This happens every time the enemy is portrayed as one of the figures of absolute evil. When we must renounce this identification, which is profitable for inflaming the war, and move on to diplomacy, we realize that there is no Terrorism without terrorists, Fanaticism without fanatics, Integralism without fundamentalists. And Afghan Emirate without Taliban.
How do we tell it then after this short time? With the images of undernourished children in hospitals where everything except their eyes is annihilated by misery. It is they who continue to pay the price of war, it is they who will never forget, if they survive, what the real price was. And those of the Afghans “without qualities” that we have not taken away and to whom there are not even the flight, desertion, the modest and sacrosanct weapons with which the common man has always defended his right to survive from the abuse of wanting him dead. Not to die is their ideal, the most worthy of all. The only one where I see honor, even courage.
For just one hundred days, Afghanistan is suspended in a dark area, with its signs, its messages, its hieroglyphs, on the edge of an extension that has become unknown again, which extends the world of our history into the shadows. The only certain thing is that the war is over but not the suffering of the Afghans, between deadly attacks, hunger and impending winter, obscurantism applied with homeopathic but ruthless efficiency. The temptation of oblivion among us defeated, that, advances. More than the things said, the reluctance weighs heavily. Afghan men, women and children irremediably retreat in the hierarchy of urgencies of the chancelleries, souls vanished, as if driven back into a new gestation. And they survive only in the indomitable fussiness of merciful minorities, their reaffirmation that even there we remain present.
No step back
If ever there were doubts about the devil now at least these are dispelled. Because the Taliban have been consistent in these hundred days. They strongly drew their own outlines. In their plans was the project to inherit Afghanistan intact from the old government, including the much-needed international humanitarian aid. They took chaos into their own hands and it brought them very close to disaster. But they have not taken a step back in their sanctified abuses. Those who painted them Panglossian as changed by the comforts of power, tending to moderate, willing to purr to the West because they were tormented by the need for recognition and help, had to put away their papers. They thought that victory happens and therefore it consumes itself. Instead, as a hundred days ago, at the time of the Kabul airport, they spy on the usual terrible faces, filled with a wild, grim power.
Hundred-day Afghanistan appears to be firmly Taliban and the only enemy that challenges them is the local version of ISIS terrorism, which is swelling the ranks. The Taliban promise to at least guarantee security in a country of eternal war therefore appears false. Unfortunately, even the most cynical proponents of realpolitik could never imagine investing in the indigenous Caliphate as a force of resistance. Indeed, their bloody activism that puts cold on the skin would be one more temptation to accommodate themselves to coexistence with the Taliban, jihadists of a deadly but peasant holy war, strictly restricted to national borders. They will not generate a vauction offspring of fanatics capable of blowing up the planet. They don’t invade, they don’t clutter up, they stay there.
The emirate presents itself in a dangerous and rapid descent towards collapse, suspended in an anemic half life. There is no money to pay the officials and especially the militiamen. Consequence of a totally artificial economy for twenty years held up only by American support and international aid. Thus, with central bank funds blocked by the United States as a measure of pressure and the money market fund, twenty-two million Afghans are in acute food insecurity and nine already in famine.
Once again, as at the moment of the decision to hand over the country to the Taliban, Afghanistan presents itself above all to us as a moral problem. Seeking, after a defeat, a perfect solution that guarantees security, an immaculate world panorama and, moreover, is consistent with absolute morals, we who have betrayed the Afghans by leaving, appears as an arrogant mistake. We collect dangerous argumentsthe.
It is the temptation, not too hidden, to politicize aid, or to subordinate it to an acceptance of some key principles capable of making the Taliban devil less unpresentable, namely concessions on the freedom of women and minorities, and mitigating the bolts of Sharia law on society.
Some hypocritical attempts are made in this direction, helping but in anonymous guise, allowing the sending of aid but not binding “non-governmental organizations”. Let’s face it: a money lender’s business, a bit cowardly. To the Taliban it is enough to present it as an implicit “recognition”.
It is by no means certain that the aid-based balance of power really works and does not simply make the very ones we need to help as women and children more prone to hunger and neglect. The Taliban as winners have not yielded in anything and know how to present the famine as yet another indirect and vengeful aggression of the West to which they have been able to cut the claws. High road to unleash a new ebb of hatred against foreigners.
Purity and rigor
But in the light of the first hundred days, are we sure that the Taliban are really so obsessed with the daily suffering of their thirty million subjects? Do they need us to mitigate it? The jihadists, and the Taliban are, pay little attention to the minute welfare of the people. Compassion is not part of their governing art. Their task is to ensure with unequivocal gestures the virtue necessary to deserve the bigoted apotheosis, not the mirage of a full stomach or the rate of development. In their relentless messianism the hungry poor have an advantage in ascent. Unlike other tyrannies, they bring to their violence a scruple of purity and rigor that makes it even more solid, capable of mineralizing man.
Let us not be under any illusions about the dynamism of the victims, let us not speculate, ferociously and with too many hopes, about hunger revolts. In the background is China, which for the moment is making a trickle of aid flow, but bartering it for useful supplies. For the Taliban. A temptation. And a solution.
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