President Trump has said that he would bring the American forces back from Afghanistan till December 2020. Though a welcome statement, seen from the Afghan perspective, it would be too naïve to believe Trump because he has been taking several U-turns, especially with regard to Afghanistan. Every prominent American, including Mike Pompeo, has been maintaining that the road to America passes through Kabul.
The withdrawal from Afghanistan is important for Pakistan also because it has suffered great loss in the last twenty years. After 9/11, Pakistan was pushed to the wall. We did everything, but still, there is a demand to “do more”. Hence, Pakistan could not make the US happy and the Afghans were angry too. Immediately after the attack on Afghanistan, it was said that the Taliban’s days were numbered. Soon Mullah Umar and others would be arrested.
America turned Afghanistan into the Stone Age but it got nothing. In the pretext of eliminating its enemies, America set a foothold in Afghanistan. Despite the loss of thousands of innocent Afghans’ lives, there was no iota of sympathy from the international community. Despite all its sophisticated technology and military clout, America could not arrest Osama Bin Laden. The statements, like Trump’s, have come in dozens from Washington in the past. They are hardly acted upon. That is why it is hard to believe that America will withdraw from Afghanistan.
It is difficult for a person who is not ready to follow a peaceful transition of power if he loses the presidential elections in his own country. When a person is not ready to accept defeat in elections if he loses, how can he withdraw from a country from where it can oversee the activities of his enemies? Neither would he accept to reduce America’s influence in Afghanistan nor in Pakistan. Both of these countries remain important for America and other countries of the world because of their geopolitical significance. Let’s hope that the American President acts on his statement and withdraws from Afghanistan finally.