Afghanistan remains one of the main challenges for the new U.S. administration under President Donald Trump with local observers suggesting he will have to review the strategy of the war on terror in Afghanistan to conclude the longest U.S. war in its history successfully.

terrorism globallyPresident Trump, who was sworn-in as the 45th U.S. president in a ceremony on Friday, in his maiden yet short speech made after his inauguration, reportedly said, “We will unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism to eradicate it completely from the face of the earth.”

However, he didn’t mention the name of Afghanistan where the U.S.-coalition forces have been fighting since October 2001 to eliminate the terrorist forces of al-Qaida, the Taliban and associated groups.

“The war on terror, initiated by former U.S. President George W. Bush in Afghanistan, and continued by President Obama would also last during President Trump’s tenure,” renown analyst, General (Rtd) Atiqullah Omarkhil, told Xinhua.

Backing his notion, the military expert and political observer argued that the “United States itself doesn’t want to end the war in Afghanistan” saying “the U.S.-led coalition forces might have already won the war on terror when it had more than 150,000-strong multi-national troops in Afghanistan if she fought sincerely.”

“The U.S.-led coalition forces overthrew the al-Qaida backed Taliban regime within weeks in late 2001 but the ‘cat and mouse’ war has been continuing over the past 15 years,” the analyst highlighted.

The former army general and political expert expressed doubt over the U.S. resolve in fighting terrorism sincerely in Afghanistan amid Kabul’s desires that the new administration in Washington like its predecessors would continue to support the Afghan government in the war against the Taliban and associated groups.

Afghan Presidential Spokesman Haroon Chakhansori in talks with reporters at a press conference recently assumed that since relations between Kabul and Washington are strategic and based on common interests, it stands to reason that the new U.S. administration would continue to back Afghanistan.

Similarly, Mujib Rahman Rahimi, the spokesman for the Afghan Chief Executive also in talks with media outlets last week accused Pakistan of supporting the Taliban outfit and hoped the new U.S. administration would support the Afghan government in the war terror and put pressure on Islamabad to give up backing militants operating in Afghanistan.

Afghan ex-President Hamid Karzai has also called upon President Trump to review Washington’s strategy in the war on terror and pay attention to the terrorists’ safe havens in Pakistan.

Afghans mostly accuse Pakistan of backing the Taliban and like-minded groups in fighting in Afghanistan, a claim utterly rebuffed by Islamabad as baseless.

Nevertheless, Omarkhil, as an eminent analyst, brushed aside the demand of Afghan officials from the new U.S. administration as wishful thinking and observed, “the U.S. is not serious in the war on terror, otherwise, the Taliban militants might already have been diminished.”

The war on terror launched by the U.S.-led coalition forces against the Taliban regime on charges of providing shelter to the then leader of the al-Qaida network Osama Bin Laden in October 2001, has claimed thousands of lives including Afghan civilians, security forces and the multi-national troops stationed in Afghanistan.

“The U.S.-led war on terror in Afghanistan has yet to deliver,” observed the analyst. “Failure in the war on terror has paved the way for the Islamic State terrorist group to emerge and kill Afghans. Afghans will continue to suffer at the hands of terrorists in the years ahead,” Omarkhil predicted.

Corroborating the notion, a former Afghan diplomat and prominent analyst, Ahmad Sayedi, said that President Trump in his speech clearly indicated that he wants everything for his country, the United States, and cautioned the government to be vigilant and do its best to stand on its own feet.

“With a backdrop of failure in the war on terror over the past 15 years, Afghanistan will likely continue to remain a challenge for the U.S. administration in the years ahead,” the political expert observed.

Afghan newspapers in their editorials have also warned the Trump administration that leaving Afghanistan in the lurch would eventually pave the way for terrorist outfits to regroup and destabilize the region and the world at large. Enditem

Source: Abdul Haleem, Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh

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