New Afghan strategy will fail if neighbors concerns not addressed

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BEIJING, July 21 (APP): The US President Trump’s new afghan strategy will not help
the war-torn nation if the security concerns, views and interests of Afghanistan’s
neighbors are not addressed.
Taking Afghanistan’s neighbors onboard is vital to ending the war through dialogue,
which is the only viable option. If the concerns and viewpoints of China, Iran, Russia and
Pakistan are not considered, it will create suspicions and tensions.
These views were expressed by Nadeem Alizai, a Kabul-based journalist in his article
published in Global Times on Friday.
He said in the past, the US’s abstruse Afghan strategy has deteriorated the security
situation in the region.
This week, the US Defense Secretary said that the strategy “could change the nature
of US military engagement” in Afghanistan.
It is believed that US military engagement will not be limited to assistance or training
missions. The US troops in Afghanistan will fight militant groups directly, and night raids
will resume.
He said many Afghans see this strategy as a pretext for a longer presence of US
forces in the country. They believe the strategy will not help the country because if the
goal was elimination of terrorists and helping Afghan security forces, the US would have
done it long before.
Likewise, Pakistan will distance itself further from the US if it comes under crippling
pressure, and drone strikes were resumed. A troop surge without a clear plan will also
perturb Russia and China, because the two countries played an important role in the
Afghan reconciliation process. Iran, China and Russia will feel pressure when violence
increases in Afghanistan, he observed.
If this happens, then the future of the Afghan peace process is surely dark as talks
and war cannot go hand in hand.
Political indicators give us a hint about the reaction of Afghanistan’s neighbors to the
new strategy, which is still under discussion. The reaction is favorable neither to the
Trump administration nor the Afghan government.
Therefore, a candid approach toward the Afghan problem is imperative to end the
vicious circle of violence in the war-devastated country.
He opined that Afghan strategy must be broad-based and backed by Afghanistan’s
neighbors.
The White House has failed to give convincing replies to numerous questions related
to the war against terrorism, especially the dramatic emergence of IS.
Strategy based on insolence and miscalculations will prolong the misery of the
Afghan people. Besides, an absence of key regional players will embolden the insurgents.
Therefore, inclusion of Afghanistan’s neighbors in the discussion on Afghan strategy
would help US military strategists.
In order to end the war and have a result-oriented Afghan strategy, the US should
convene a conference on its strategy.
The new strategy shall prove as a blessing rather than a curse for the Afghan people
and other nations in the region who have suffered greatly. The best approach will be to
include the affected nations and address their concerns. It will not only help in leading the
war on terror to its ultimate end but also finding solutions to other major challenges such
as radicalism, narcotics trafficking, separatist movements and civilian casualties, he
concluded.