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AFGHANISTAN

Jan 18 06:34

Quake kills dozens, destroys hundreds of homes in Afghanistan

At least 26 people have been killed after a shallow earthquake of magnitude 5.3 hit western Afghanistan on Monday, destroying hundreds of homes.

Provincial officials said the victims, including women and children, died when roofs of their houses collapsed in Qadis district in the western province of Badghis bordering Turkmenistan.

The quake also inflicted damage on the residents of Muqr district in the province but details including of casualties were still unavailable.

Afghanistan is already in the grip of a humanitarian disaster because of Western countries' decision to freeze international aid and access to the country's assets held abroad.

Jan 16 06:57

Why is Washington collectively punishing the Afghan people?

Afghanistan is facing a major economic and humanitarian crisis, and the U.S. has it within its power to prevent at least part of the approaching disaster.

The Biden administration’s decision to freeze nearly $10 billion in Afghan government assets has put an already impoverished, suffering country on a disastrous path to mass poverty and starvation, and it must move swiftly to release these assets. It is understandable that the administration does not want to be seen as “rewarding” the Taliban after it seized control this summer, but that is not a good enough reason to keep these funds frozen. Refusing to unfreeze these assets will impose a terrible punishment on tens of millions of ordinary Afghans.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Because Biden is a sore loser?

Jan 16 06:32

Afghan Women Despair Over Closed Public Universities

A number of female students in eastern Nangarhar province voiced mounting despair about the lack of access to public universities, lack of employment opportunities for women and girls, and the uncertain future in general for Afghan girls and women in the country.

Ahmad Khan, who is a teacher in Nangarhar province, said that three of his daughters were students at the department of Agriculture, Engineering and Literature at Nangarhar University, but for months the doors of public universities have been closed to them.

Kerishma, a 20-year-old woman living in the Shiwa district of Nangarhar, told TOLOnews that she and her younger sister (Zala) had passed the entrance exams for the engineering and literature departments at Nangarhar University last year, but had not yet been able to join their classes.

Jan 15 08:05

Islamic Emirate Denies Claims in HRW Report on Afghanistan

The Islamic Emirate denied the claims in a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Afghanistan, saying that the human rights situation has become better compared to the previous years in the country.

“We deny it because since the Islamic Emirate swept into power, the rights of women have been maintained. These reports are published based on false information,” said deputy spokesman for the Islamic Emirate, Bilal Karimi.

HRW in its World Report 2022 released on Thursday said the political change in Afghanistan on August 15, 2021 -- the fall of the former government and the Islamic Emirate's return to power -- accelerated human rights crises and humanitarian catastrophe in Afghanistan.

The report furthered said that the two most significant achievements of the post-2001 era – progress in women’s rights and a free press – were rolled back after the fall of the former government.

Jan 15 07:29

Hundreds of Jihadis Protest After Taliban Arrests One of Their Own

Protests broke out in Maimana, capital of Afghanistan’s Faryab province, on Thursday after the Taliban arrested one of their own commanders, Uzbekistan-born Makhdoom Alam.

A veteran battlefield commander and “shadow governor” of Faryab under the Taliban’s “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan,” Alam was the highest-ranking Uzbek in the Taliban hierarchy before his arrest.

Alam was arrested in Mazar-e-Sharif on Wednesday for murky reasons, reportedly on the orders of Mullah Fazel Akhund, the Taliban’s deputy defense minister. Maimana was the scene of protests because the population is majority Uzbek, the third-largest ethnic group in Afghanistan.

Jan 15 07:14

Turkish DM: with shift from Afghanistan to Ukraine, NATO more active than ever

Turkey shares NATO’s values and responsibilities and has “successfully” fulfilled all the duties and missions entrusted to it since 1952, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Jan. 14.

“We believe that NATO, as the most successful defense alliance in history, is more active and vibrant than ever before,” Akar said, visiting the 3rd Corps Command, which performed the NATO Rapid Deployment Corps-Turkey (NRDC-T) mission in 2021.

He described the transfer to Romania within the scope of the “Steadfast Defender-21 Exercise” as an “impressive success” in terms of logistics and military mobility.

Jan 14 17:37

23 Million Afghans Are Now On The Brink of Famine Thanks to Biden’s Botched Withdrawal

Disease and famine in Afghanistan are now threatening tens of millions in the war-torn country thanks to Joe Biden’s botched withdrawal a few months ago.

Jan 14 07:20

Cost for Afghan Refugees at Bases Reaches $688 Million, Pentagon Says

The military's total cost for housing tens of thousands of Afghan refugees at U.S. bases has already topped $688 million, according to the Defense Department.

The most recent figure accounts for refugee villages set up at eight bases from August through mid-December, the department told Military.com on Wednesday. The cost is certain to rise as about 19,500 Afghans remain on installations awaiting permanent resettlement.

More than 76,000 refugees arrived in the U.S. as part of Operation Allies Welcome when Kabul fell to the Taliban and the military ended its 20-year campaign in war-torn Afghanistan. Many of the refugees worked with U.S. forces, and the U.S. military undertook one of the largest airlifts in history to bring them to safety.

Jan 12 07:03

23 Million Afghans On Brink Of Starvation As Media Has 'Moved On'

Progressive US lawmakers and human rights advocates are urging the Biden administration to immediately lift economic sanctions on Afghanistan that are fueling a humanitarian disaster and as famine threatens millions in the war-torn nation. "Aid groups have predicted that if current U.S. economic policy toward Afghanistan continues, there could be more civilian deaths this year than there were in 20 years of war," the Congressional Progressive Caucus tweeted Sunday. "The Biden administration can, and must, act now."

The Taliban seized control of the country in August following the U.S. military's withdrawal after two decades of a military occupation that enriched weapons makers but did little to benefit the Afghan people. Following its defeat, the U.S. then imposed new sanctions the Taliban government, while the World Bank and IMF froze crucial assets.

Jan 12 07:03

Lawmakers Press Biden On 20,000 US-Trained Afghan Commandos Still Being "Hunted" By Taliban

Republican Congressional leaders are still, over four months after the chaotic and deadly US troop exit from Afghanistan, trying to press the Biden administration on why it won't initiate efforts to get the remainder of local Afghan allies out of the country. Specifically there's been growing concern over an estimated 20,000 Afghan commandos who had been trained and advised by US special forces, and often did the bulk of the counter-terrorism fighting during the final years of the US war in Afghanistan. This includes thousands of interpreters who helped the Pentagon, risking their lives. Now, there's a feeling in Washington that the administration is simply ready to abandon them, hoping no one notices or makes too much noise about it.

Jan 11 07:14

Commander: Troops Will Be Stationed Along Durand Line

The commander of border forces in the eastern zone of Afghanistan, Sanaullah Sangin, said that troops will be stationed in 32 newly established outposts along the Durand Line.

The commander made the remarks during a graduation ceremony of around 150 border force members who passed a 45-day training in the eastern part of the country. Sangin said these forces will be dispatched alongside the Durand Line to defend Afghanistan’s territory.

“The new forces are going to be settled ... where we built 32 outposts. The ways (roads) ending at these outposts will be finished soon and we will be ready to defend against any assault,” said Sanaullah Sangin.

Jan 11 06:39

Afghanistan’s embassy to act within limits of 1961 Vienna Convention: Iran Foreign Ministry spokesman

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman has reacted to certain reports about future diplomatic activities of Afghanistan’s embassy in Tehran, specifying that the country's mission will only act within the constraints of the 1961 Vienna Convention.

Speaking on Sunday, Saeed Khatibzadeh responded to reports carried by certain media outlets alleging that the Iranian government is planning to hand over the Afghan embassy in Tehran to the Taliban.

“The diplomatic activities of the Afghan embassy in Tehran, like all foreign embassies, fall within the framework of the principles and rules defined by the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, and no developments are possible to take place outside [the convention's stipulations],” Khatibzadeh said.

A day earlier, the Taliban foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, arrived in Tehran while heading a high-ranking delegation to hold talks with Iranian officials in a first such trip since the group seized power.

Jan 11 06:31

White House Allocates Over $300Mln in Humanitarian Aid to Afghanistan

The United States has allocated another $308 million in humanitarian aid to Afghanistan, bringing the total of Washington's assistance to the country to $782 million since October 2021, the White House announced on Tuesday.

"The United States is announcing a new contribution of more than $308 million in humanitarian assistance for the people of Afghanistan. This brings total US humanitarian aid in Afghanistan and for Afghan refugees in the region to nearly $782 million since October 2021, and we remain the single largest donor of humanitarian aid in Afghanistan," the White House said in a statement.

The US has also announced sending one million additional COVID-19 vaccine doses through COVAX to Afghanistan, bringing our total to 4.3 million doses.

To date, Afghanistan has confirmed over 150,000 COVID-19 cases and more than 7,000 deaths.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Humanitarian aid" -> "War reparations!"

Jan 09 06:41

Taliban Threatened US With 2,000 Suicide Bombers In Washington D.C.

A recent report by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) - which monitors and tracks global jihadist communications via open source intelligence collection methods - has detailed that last year the Taliban threatened the Biden administration with "a battalion of suicide bombers" sent to Washington D.C.

This was a threat and warning reportedly relayed simultaneous with prior Doha talks when it emerged the Pentagon was contemplating a massive security force of some 2,000 US troops to guard the at that time still operating American embassy in Kabul.

According to the MEMRI report, "In December 2021, it also emerged that the Islamic Emirate told the United States during talks in Doha that if the U.S. insisted on deploying 2,000 American troops at its embassy in Kabul, the Taliban would also deploy as part of any bilateral arrangement 2,000 fidayeen mujahideen [i.e., suicide bombers] at the Afghan Embassy in Washington D.C."

Jan 08 08:14

Quantico Rings Up $188 Million Bill for Afghan Refugees Housed in Tents

Thousands of Afghans briefly called Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia home after fleeing a Taliban takeover in August.

The last of those 3,755 refugees were resettled elsewhere in the U.S. just days before Christmas, leaving only an empty, impromptu village of tents and barracks rooms on the base -- and a $188 million bill for the Marine Corps and the Pentagon.

The cost of the housing effort reported this week by the Defense Department inspector general is a snapshot of Operation Allies Welcome, the mission of eight stateside bases to host 67,000 Afghan refugees airlifted out of Kabul at the end of August when the U.S. military ended all operations in Afghanistan after a 20-year war.

Jan 08 07:45

Taliban weed about to attract millions in foreign investment

CPharm International (ECI), a German research and development firm, has said it is planning a multi-million-dollar investment in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, with the aim of producing weed for medical purposes.

Following an unfortunate case of mistaken identity in late 2021, Vice media agency tracked down a German company, CPharm International (ECI), which has struck a deal with the Taliban.

Last year, a tweet from the Afghan Ministry of the Interior claimed that a firm called “Cpharm” had met with Taliban officials and would invest $450 million in Afghanistan to set up a “hashish-processing” operation. The media wrongly identified a small Australian medical consulting firm of the same name; they vehemently denied the link with the Taliban.

Jan 07 07:04

Eric Greitens: Biden Can’t Stand the Truth About January 6 – Or Anything Else

President Abraham Lincoln famously said, “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.”

Less than a year since being sworn into office, Joe Biden has steered our nation into crisis after crisis. By any sane measure, Joe Biden’s administration is a complete and total failure.

President Trump pursued a peace through strength foreign policy. Historic peace agreements followed. Joe Biden has pursued a policy of weakness and apology, which led to the disaster in Afghanistan, which killed 13 service members, including Marine Cpl. Jared Schmitz from my home state of Missouri. China now regularly flies nuclear-capable aircraft through Taiwanese airspace. The Russians have signed a military cooperation agreement with Saudi Arabia.

Jan 07 06:24

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to Testify on Afghanistan Withdrawal Debacle

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is expected to testify next week on events surrounding the disastrous U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Austin will appear Tuesday in a closed-door hearing with the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations examining the conclusion of a 20-year military intervention in Afghanistan which came to an abrupt end in August 2021.

The retired four star U.S. general previously criticised President Donald Trump’s withdrawal strategy from Afghanistan when testifying to the Senate in September 2021.

Austin claimed then Trump’s peace deal was partly responsible for the problems with the withdrawal, saying it had a “demoralising effect on Afghan soldiers”, alongside corruption in the Afghanistan government.

Austin, President Joe Biden’s January 2021 appointee, did not however suggest Biden bore any major responsibility for the disastrous events that transpired outside Kabul, UPI reports.

Jan 06 07:53

America's 'Suez moment': Another strategic mistake would be its last

America has just had its Suez Crisis," commented a member of the Iranian delegation at the nuclear talks in Vienna about the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban, "but it has yet to see it."

It's not just the fall of Kabul.

In 2021, President Joe Biden truly reaped a bitter harvest from the strategic foreign policy errors of four of his predecessors. As he was the vice president for one of them, Barack Obama, he has trouble seeing this as well. The seeds of each of the major global conflict zones post - Afghanistan, Ukraine, Taiwan, and Iran were planted long ago.

What unravelled this year was no less than three decades of bungled US global governance.

Jan 06 06:48

‘Inclusive’: Taliban Military Will Include Women, Suicide Bombers

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told reporters that the updated Afghan military under the jihadists’ rule will have a place for women as well as a battalion of suicide bombers, the Afghan outlet Khaama Press reported on Tuesday.

Jan 06 06:08

Austin, Blinken to Testify Before Private Senate Panel About Afghanistan Pullout Disaster

Two top Biden administration officials are set to testify in private before a Senate panel next week as lawmakers seek additional answers about the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan last summer.

The Senate’s Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees have posted an event scheduled for 10 am on January 11 at which Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Antony Blinken will testify. The hearing is closed and will not be webcast, and no further details have been released about the event.

The two men, along with several other leading members of the administration and Pentagon, have already testified before the two Senate committees once, in the weeks after the US completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan on August 31, 2021. Austin was excoriated for a no-show at a September 14 panel that Blinken also testified at, but appeared two weeks later at yet another hearing with the top diplomat.

Jan 03 09:51

Why hasn't this clip gone viral?

Jan 03 09:30

Who Won in Afghanistan? Private Contractors

The U.S. lost its 20-year campaign to transform Afghanistan. Many contractors won big.
Those who benefited from the outpouring of government money range from major weapons manufacturers to entrepreneurs. A California businessman running a bar in Kyrgyzstan started a fuel business that brought in billions in revenue. A young Afghan translator transformed a deal to provide forces with bed sheets into a business empire including a TV station and a domestic airline.

Two Army National Guardsmen from Ohio started a small business providing the military with Afghan interpreters that grew to become one of the Army’s top contractors. It collected nearly $4 billion in federal contracts, according to publicly available records.

Four months after the last American troops left Afghanistan, the U.S. is assessing the lessons to be learned. Among those, some officials and watchdog groups say, is the reliance on battlefield contractors and how that adds to the costs of waging war.

Dec 31 07:18

Choking the Afghan People to Death

Graeme Smith urges the U.S. and its allies to stop starving Afghanistan:

The United States and its allies should ease their restrictions and get to work helping revive the Afghan economy. Doing so would reinforce regional stability, stem the drug trade, and reduce the likelihood of another migration crisis. Saving millions of Afghans from destitution might also redeem U.S. prestige after its chaotic withdrawal. The unavoidable side effect would be some degree of assistance for the Taliban regime, but such tradeoffs are a hallmark of realpolitik.

The withdrawal from Afghanistan should have marked the end of the U.S. war there, but an even more destructive economic warfare had taken its place. The Afghan people are being punished more by our government’s sanctions than they were by its bombs, and now they are staring one of the largest man-made famines in the face. I have made similar arguments over the last two months.

Dec 31 07:08

Taliban chief orders fighters not to 'punish' former members of Afghanistan's 'regime'

The Taliban's supreme leader has ordered fighters not to punish members of Afghanistan's former "regime" for past "crimes", days after a video of an army commander being beaten went viral on social media.

The order, tweeted Thursday by group spokesman Mohammad Naeem, also urged Taliban authorities to discourage Afghans from leaving the country as they would not be respected abroad.

"Don't punish employees of the previous regime for their past crimes," Mullah Hibatullah Akhundzada was quoted as telling followers in Kandahar, the birthplace of the hardline Islamist movement.

The Taliban chief - who has not been filmed or photographed in public for years - said a general amnesty announced after the Islamists took power in August should be honoured.

Dec 29 07:27

How the Taliban’s tightening the noose on women’s rights

Since their rise to power in August, Afghanistan’s new rulers have considerably limited women’s rights, stopping short, however, of reviving some of the more draconian rules they enforced in the past.

While, back in the 1990s, the Taliban gained notoriety for stripping women of almost all their freedoms, the group now claims it has changed tack and will respect women's rights, as long as these are compatible with Islam's sharia law, that is. However, as evidenced by a slew of new regulations put in place since mid-August, it is predominantly Afghan women who are finding themselves forced into a more conservative mold, in more ways than one.

Dec 28 09:25

‘The War Isn’t Over’: Stu Scheller Announces Discharge from the Marine Corps, His Planned Media Blitz

The Marine lieutenant colonel who demanded accountability from senior military leaders for the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan has announced that he has been officially discharged from the Marine Corps and is planning to go on a media blitz.

Former Marine Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Scheller wrote on his Facebook page on December 23: “Out of respect to my senior leaders, I haven’t done a single interview since this began. But now it’s my turn. My television media blitz starts with Tucker Carlson on 4 January.”

He said he would write a post a day up to the January 4 interview and evoked George Washington’s first major victory in the American Revolutionary War on December 26, 1776.

“The attack on December 26th wasn’t decisive, but as history shows, it was a turning point in the war,” he wrote before recounting his own battle with Marine Corps leadership. He wrote:

Dec 27 10:01

Putin: Those That 'Destroyed' Afghan Economy Should Provide Aid

Russian President Vladimir Putin linked the recognition of the current Afghan government with ground realities, saying that “forces that are now at the helm in Afghanistan should be prepared for all ethnic groups to be represented in the country’s leadership."

Putin made the remarks in response to a question asked by Sputnik News Agency at his annual press conference.

“As for the recognition, we are working in a consolidated way with all the participants of international interaction. We have our position--we will strive for this decision to be a consolidated one,” he said.

However, he said he hoped that relations between Kabul and Moscow would develop in the “best possible way."

“This is not an idle issue for us because we have open borders with Central Asian republics, the former republics of the Soviet Union, and, of course, the potential incursion of some extremist elements there cannot but cause us certain alarm and concerns,” Putin added.

Dec 27 10:00

No long-distance travel for women without male relative: Taliban

In Afghanistan, the Taliban authorities say women seeking to travel long distances should not be allowed on road transport unless they are accompanied by a close male relative.

The guidance issued on Sunday by the Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, which also called on vehicle owners to refuse rides to women not wearing headscarves, has drawn condemnation from rights activists.

Dec 27 10:00

‘No need’: Taliban dissolves Afghanistan election commission

The Taliban has dissolved Afghanistan’s election commission, a panel that supervised polls during the previous Western-backed administration, says a spokesman for the government.

“There is no need for these commissions to exist and operate,” spokesman Bilal Karimi said on Saturday, referring to the Independent Election Commission (IEC) and the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission.

Dec 24 08:18

Russia Blames US for Current Afghan Situation

A Russian Federation official blamed the US and its allies for “undermining” the situation in Afghanistan.

“Instead of admitting mistakes and refusing to dictate, they took the financial leverage to push their demands on the Taliban movement,” Oleg Syromolotov, deputy foreign minister, told an international conference, as quoted by Sputnik.

Political analysts believe that the increasing pressure on the Islamic Emirate will cause an escalation in extremist activities and lead to the further deterioration of the Afghan economy.

“As the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan becomes worse, the Asian and Central Asian countries will be affected,” said Mehdi Afzali, a political analyst.

“The US should not put financial pressure on the Taliban to meet its wishes,” said Sayed Haroon Hashimi, a political analyst.

The Islamic Emirate cited the foreign countries' interference as a reason for the current chaos in the country.

Dec 22 07:08

Afghanistan and Our Murderous Sanctions Addiction

The people of Afghanistan are facing what could be the worst modern famine in at least half a century, and US policies will be responsible for much of the humanitarian catastrophe if they are not changed immediately. Afghanistan became heavily dependent on international aid during the 20-year US war, and it is also heavily dependent on imports. Since the fall of Kabul to the Taliban, the country has largely been cut off from the funds that it needs to keep its economy functioning, and that is the result of actions taken by US, US allies, and US-led international institutions. The Biden administration’s decisions to halt aid, freeze government assets, and keep US sanctions in place have throttled the country’s economy and pushed it towards the abyss of famine.

Dec 21 11:55

US says $300m per year lost to ‘ghost soldiers’ in Afghanistan

US government’s Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John F. Sopko, in its 20 year review issued this month, states that due to poor oversight by US officials, more than $300 million a year were pocketed by corrupt officials as salary payments to ‘ghost soldiers’ by inflating payrolls of Afghan National Army and other forces.

Dec 20 09:13

Russian military planes evacuate 200 people from Afghanistan

Russian military transport planes on Saturday delivered a shipment of humanitarian supplies to Afghanistan and flew back 200 Russians, Afghan students and others, the defense ministry said.

The ministry said that three Il-76 cargo planes will make stopovers in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan before flying to Moscow. It said the planes were carrying citizens of Russia and Kyrgyzstan who wanted to leave Afghanistan, and Afghan students enlisted in Russian universities.

Saturday's mission is the latest in a series of such Russian flights since August. Previous flights have delivered humanitarian cargo and evacuated a total of 770 citizens of Russia and other ex-Soviet nations.

Dec 20 06:22

Tariq Ali: Afghanistan War was for money laundering & drug trafficking, not freedom & women’s liberation

On this episode of Going Underground, we speak to Tariq Ali, author of ‘The Forty-Year War in Afghanistan: A Chronicle Foretold’. He discusses the persecution of Julian Assange and the significance of the Afghan war logs released by WikiLeaks, the real motives for the US-led NATO war and occupation of Afghanistan being money laundering, military-industrial complex profiteering, and drug trafficking, rather than women’s rights and democracy, the US de-facto opposing women’s rights and civil rights while fighting the proxy war against the Soviet Union, and much more. Finally, we speak to Judge Kevin Sharp, lawyer of Leonard Peltier, the indigenous rights activist who remains the longest serving political prisoner in the US. He discusses the failing health of Peltier and attempts to appeal to presidents to free him, evidence that he is innocent and not responsible for the murder of two FBI agents, the unfairness Peltier faced during his trial, and much more.

Dec 18 07:58

Three Russian Planes Ship 36 Tonnes of Humanitarian Aid to Kabul, Defence Ministry Says

Three military transport aircraft of the Russian Defence Ministry delivered 36 tons of humanitarian aid to Kabul, the ministry's press service said Saturday.

"Each Russian military transport aircraft is carrying humanitarian aid from Russia for the Afghan people. A total of 36 tons of humanitarian cargo including food and medication have been airlifted [to Afghanistan]," the press service said in a statement, adding that medical crews are aboard each aircraft to provide the evacuees with necessary help.

The flights were organized upon the instructions of President Vladimir Putin to evacuate over 300 people from Afghanistan.

This evacuation group is the fourth organized by Russia, and the planes are to fly Russian and Kyrgyz citizens and Afghan students studying in Russia out of Afghanistan.

Dec 18 07:02

UNBELIEVABLE: WH Believes They “Safely And Effectively Drew Down” In Afghanistan

Dec 15 10:14

Rare photographs of Afghanistan from the 1950s and 1960s

This is Afghanistan of the 1950s and 1960s. Many people would think that they would see pictures of a wild, undeveloped and medieval country where living conditions are worse than they are now. think again.

Affected by centuries of internal conflict and foreign interference, Afghanistan took several possible steps towards modernization in the mid-20th century.

In the 1950s and 1960s, some of the greatest progress was made toward a more liberal and Western lifestyle, while trying to maintain respect for the more conservative factions.

Although officially a neutral nation, Afghanistan was influenced and influenced by the US and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, acknowledging Soviet machinery and weapons, and the U.S. financial help.

Dec 15 10:09

Execution of a traitor during the war in Afghanistan, 1980

It was June 1980, when the Soviet Union invaded its southern neighbor to prevent the collapse of the pro-Soviet government in Kabul. The Russians were condemned by an Islamic war tribunal for condemning nine families, the man in the photo being taken to be hanged 20km outside Kabul.

The photos were taken by French photographer Alain Mingham who was covering Mujahideen rebels in Afghanistan. Largely because he was sympathetic to the Mujahideen's cause against the Soviet invaders, Mingam was specially brought in to witness an execution.

"For someone like me who didn't cover the Vietnam War, the Mujahideen's fight against the world's largest army was David vs. Goliath: those bearded, turbaned men fascinated me. If I hadn't been there, I would The man would not have been shot and then beheaded,” Mingham later said. For months, he admitted, he could not sleep because he felt like a companion.

Dec 14 06:43

Pentagon: Troops Tied to Botched Kabul Drone Strike That Killed 10 Civilians Will Face No Punishment

US President Joe Biden and his predecessor ordered the chaotic and bloody evacuation of the US embassy in Kabul, which drew in NATO allies including the UK. The airlift became a humanitarian disaster as thousands of Afghans tried to enter the airport and climb onto cargo planes — some clinging to the undercarriage until they fell to their deaths.

US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin has ordered that no US armed forces personnel will face punishment for an August drone attack that killed civilians amid American withdrawal efforts.

The move was confirmed by Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby, who told reporters Monday that "none of the recommendations dealt specifically with issues of accountability".

Recommendations had been filed by US Central Command head Kenneth McKenzie and US Special Operations Command leader Gen. Richard Clarke to not undertake administrative action against those involved in the August 29 strike.

Dec 10 09:40

Islamic Emirate Denies Pledging to US Plan for Inclusive Govt

The Islamic Emirate denied reports alleging that officials pledged to US diplomats they would form a roadmap for an inclusive government by March 2022.

Earlier, the India 18 News quoted sources saying that the delegation of the Islamic Emirate in the latest meeting with the US envoy for Afghanistan, Thomas West, “conveyed that they need four months to conclude consultations with their top leadership” to form a roadmap for an inclusive government in the country.

The Islamic Emirate denied the reports, calling them speculation.

“What has been published in this regard, we don’t confirm it,” said Bilal Karimi, deputy spokesman for the Islamic Emirate. “The Islamic Emirate takes independent decisions regarding its government. This is the right of the people to make the decision about the formation of their government.”

The political analysts believe that the formation of an inclusive government would pave the way for the recognition of the current Afghan government.

Dec 09 12:29

Watch: The Must See Trump Interview That Has Biden White House Scrambling

Former President Trump took a swipe at Biden’s handling of Vladimir Putin amid the Russian President’s buildup of troops at the Ukraine border. Trump declared Putin “is not worried” by his predecessor after the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

“Vladimir Putin looks at our pathetic surrender in Afghanistan, leaving behind dead Soldiers, American citizens, and $85 billion worth of Military equipment. He then looks at Biden. He is not worried!” Trump said in a statement through his Save America PAC just hours after Biden wrapped up his video call with the Russian President.

Dec 08 08:18

More than 30,000 Afghans are still living on seven military bases in the US three months after botched Afghanistan withdrawal: US has directed more than $13 BILLION to accommodate refugees to date

Three and a half months after the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, roughly 34,000 Afghans are still living at seven military bases throughout the country.

'We now have we have fewer Afghans on military bases than ever before, and more now have processed out than we have waiting to get processed,' Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told reporters on Tuesday.

The US airlifted about 82,000 Afghans out of Kabul in the days leading up to Aug. 30 as the Taliban encroached on the city. The 34,000 figure is down from six weeks ago on Oct. 26 when 53,150 evacuees were still living on military bases.

Dec 08 07:35

His balding head was bobbing like a buoy in a squall: HENRY DEEDES watches Foreign Office head squirming over Kabul shambles

Parliamentary committees have witnessed their fair share of chumps over the years.

Druggy ex-Co-op bank chairman Paul Flowers – the so-called Crystal Methodist – springs to mind. Or hapless ‘Incurious George’ Entwistle, director-general of the BBC for about as long as it takes to boil an egg.

To that list of prized bunglers, we can add the name of Sir Philip Barton KCMG OBE, permanent secretary at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) who also revels in the frothy title of head of Her Majesty’s Diplomatic Service.

Dec 06 07:08

Must See: Trump Calls Milley A F#cking Idiot

Over the weekend, President Donald Trump called "woke" General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, "a f*cking idiot" at an event Saturday.

Trump made the announcement at an event in Mar-a-Lago hosted by conservative organization Turning Point Action, a C4 affiliate of Turning Point USA.

In reference to the departure from Afghanistan, Trump stated, "I want every nut, every bolt, every screw. We're taking everything. We're taking down the tents. They left all the tents. They left everything. Couldn't they have flown in a couple of hundred pilots and flown the planes back?" Trump asked, turning to grill Milley. Human Events Daily's Jack Posobiec got the scoop.

Dec 06 06:59

Putin in Meeting With Modi, Discusses Drug-Trafficking, Terrorism and Situation in Afghanistan

Dec 01 11:47

BREAKING!!! Footage of the border clashes between Iran and Taliban forces

Sources told @aamajnews24 that the Iranian side is using heavy weapons (as you can see towards the end of the clip), and the Taliban have deployed the American Humvees in the fight against the Iranians.

There are no details yet on why these clashes have broken out.

Dec 01 07:20

Michelle Malkin: There Is No Vetting

Back in August, as the Biden administration prepared to dump 82,000-plus Afghan refugees onto U.S. soil, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security assured Americans that it was "working around the clock to conduct the security screening and vetting of vulnerable Afghans before they are permitted entry into the United States" and taking "multiple steps to ensure that those seeking entry do not pose a national security or public safety risk."

We were told that "the rigorous screening and vetting process, which is multi-layered and ongoing, involves biometric and biographic screenings conducted by intelligence, law enforcement, and counterterrorism professionals from DHS and DOD, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and additional intelligence community partners."

Nov 30 07:21

Are US-led sanctions worsening Afghanistan’s humanitarian crisis?

International aid organisations and experts say the US-led sanctions on the Taliban government are hurting the Afghan people, and called for “explicit humanitarian exemptions” for the delivery of aid to prevent a “catastrophe”.

Following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan on August 15, the aid-dependent country was cut off from international financial institutions, while nearly $10bn of its assets were frozen by the US, triggering a banking crisis.

Nov 29 07:16

EU Denies Recognition of Govt, Pledges Engagement

In a statement issued by the European Commission following the 13th ASEM Summit via videoconference, the EU’s president von der Leyen said that the world needed to stand by the people of Afghanistan.

“Finally, we have decided to strengthen our engagement on issues affecting regional stability. And this brings me to my last point: That is Afghanistan. The European Union does not recognize the new regime… but we need to prevent the imminent economic and social collapse that the country faces,” she said.

“We need to stand by the people of Afghanistan. This is why, last month, we announced a package worth EUR 1 billion, including EUR 300 million in humanitarian aid. The European Union will keep on engaging with the countries in the region,” Leyen added.

The summit was hosted by Cambodia, in which the leaders of 20 Asian governments and 30 European states participated.

Nov 27 09:20

Malnourished Afghan Children Flooding Hospitals: Doctors

The death rate of children affected with malnutrition, and level of children patients being brought to hospitals, has surged as the health sector faces severe shortages of medical supplies, officials said.

Officials at the Indira Gandhi Children's Hospital said that the number of malnourished children has recently jumped by 50 percent.

“The number of patients has increased recently. Our work is being affected as the number of patients is overwhelming, and the death rate among the children has also increased. If it there is no solution found for the problem, we will face a complete shortage of equipment,” said Farid Ahmad Andishmand, a doctor.

The head of Indira Gandhi Children Hospital, Mohammad Latif Bahir, expressed concern over the suspension of aid to the health sector.

Nov 22 07:45

US to Pursue ISIS-K, al-Qaeda, in Over-the-Horizon Mission in Afghanistan

Over the weekend, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin talked up the long-promised “over-the-horizon” missions to keep attacking Afghanistan without being in Afghanistan.

Austin said this would be part of a relentless focus on terrorism, talking of action coming against ISIS-K and al-Qaeda. US troops left Afghanistan after the Taliban routed the US-backed government in all major cities.

Even before the US left, officials talked about this sort of operation as a way to stay active in Afghanistan. It’s not at all clear what that would look like, or how sustainable it might be.

It’s probably going to mean airstrikes with little targeting support. The Taliban has insisted that they don’t need help in fighting terror, and they’ve been active in anti-ISIS-K measures.

Nov 16 09:00

Qatar Embassy In Kabul Opens 'US Section' Allowing Washington Representation To Taliban

The United States has tapped the Gulf country of Qatar to act as Washington's diplomatic representative to Afghanistan at a moment the Biden administration is still on the fence about the question of formally recognizing Taliban rule over the country. This also as Afghanistan's United Nations seat in New York is till being occupied by the former national government of Ashraf Ghani, who fled the country in August amid the rapid Taliban advance and as US forces withdrew. The US Embassy there was permanently shuttered last summer.

"The United States and Qatar have agreed that Doha will represent the diplomatic interests of the US in Afghanistan, the first official representation for the US in Kabul since its troop withdrawal in August," Al Jazeera reported.

Nov 15 08:24

Blinken Puts Terrorist Funding Nation In-Charge Of Evacuating Americans

Almost 400 U.S. citizens left behind at the end of the departure from Kabul have fled Afghanistan. All others looking to leave have been given a chance, though evidence shows a few complications.

"Since the end of the evacuation mission, we have evacuated roughly 380 Americans," Blinken told reporters Friday. "As of the 10th of November, all U.S. citizens who have requested assistance from the United States government to depart Afghanistan and who we've identified as prepared to depart and having the necessary documents have been given an opportunity to do so."

Those figures beat the estimates in the hours after the U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan when Blinken admitted there was "a small number of Americans, under 200 and likely closer to 100, who remain in Afghanistan and want to leave."

Nov 15 07:05

Making Another ISIS in Afghanistan. ISIS-K in Khorasan Province

With the United States out of Afghanistan, former members of the Afghan Security Forces who were once trained by the United States are joining Islamic State-Khorasan Province, better known as ISIS-K, the Islamic State’s regional affiliate. The result is all too predictable given America’s track record of inadvertently aiding the creation of extremist groups in the Middle East.

As it stands now, the number of former members of the Afghan Security Forces joining up with ISIS-K remains small, but it is growing, according to both Taliban fighters and other former members of the Afghan Security Forces.

Nov 10 11:26

Taliban Inaugurates "Islamic Emirate Army" With Largest-Ever Convoy Of US Armored Vehicles

The Taliban on Tuesday inaugurated its "Islamic Emirate Army" in the large city of Kandahar in Afghanistan's south by showcasing a lengthy parade of armored vehicles taken from US and NATO forces.

While it's not the first time since conquering the country in August amid the rapid US troop withdrawal that the Taliban has held military parades touting its newly acquired Western hardware and weaponry, the Kandahar parade did appear to involve the most US-supplied vehicles ever on display at once.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Afghanistan has been Bidenized!

Nov 10 09:43

Military Can’t Find ISIS Safe House That Prompted Kabul Drone Strike

The U.S. military has not located a suspected Islamic State safe house in Kabul, Afghanistan, that officials initially said led to an American drone strike on Aug. 29 that mistakenly killed 10 civilians, including seven children, according to two senior military officials.

Two days before the drone strike, military officials said they had determined through electronic intercepts, aerial surveillance and informants that ISIS planners were using a compound about three miles northwest of the Kabul airport to facilitate future attacks involving rockets, suicide explosive vests and car bombs.

But an inquiry into the drone strike by the Air Force’s inspector general, Lt. Gen. Sami D. Said, said that was wrong. “We have not found any particular safe house,” he said in a telephone interview after making his findings public last week.

Nov 10 09:41

AFTER AFGHANISTAN DISASTER, THE PENTAGON IS ON TRACK TO GET EVEN MORE MONEY

AROUND MIDDAY ON August 15, the president of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani, was told by an adviser that Taliban fighters had entered the presidential palace and were looking for him room by room. This was not true, but Ghani, aware that ousted presidents do not have long lives in his country, hurried himself and his wife to a military helicopter and fled for Uzbekistan. Without time to fetch any personal belongings, he left Kabul in plastic sandals and a thin coat, according to a Washington Post account of that day.

Nov 10 07:00

Biden Envoy: U.S. Wants Taliban to ‘Succeed’ Against the Islamic State

U.S. Special Representative to Afghanistan Thomas West on Monday hoped the Taliban would be “successful” in its battle against the Islamic State, and hinted the new rulers of Afghanistan needed to sever their ties with al-Qaeda if they desire international recognition.

“The Taliban have voiced very clearly and openly their desire to normalize relations with the international community, to see a resumption in aid, to see a return of the international diplomatic community to Kabul and to see sanctions relief. The United States can deliver none of these things on our own,” West told reporters by telephone from Brussels, where he delivered a briefing on Afghanistan to the NATO alliance.

“Allies are going to continue to play a heavy role in Afghanistan: Germany, the United Kingdom, France,” he elaborated. “We will all engage forthrightly and in a clear-eyed manner with the Taliban and with shared interests and objectives.”

Nov 09 07:44

U.S. Says Worried About Increase in Attacks by ISIS-K in Afghanistan

The United States is worried about an uptick in attacks by Islamic State's affiliate in Afghanistan and remains deeply concerned about al Qaeda's ongoing presence there, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Tom West said on Monday.

West spoke to reporters by telephone from Brussels, where he briefed NATO allies on U.S. talks with the Taliban and held consultations on a "road map" toward recognition of the government that the Islamists formed after their takeover and the U.S. troop pullout in August.

"The Taliban have voiced very clearly and openly their desire to normalize relations with the international community, to see a resumption in aid, to see a return of the international diplomatic community to Kabul and to see sanctions relief," he said. "The United States can deliver none of these things on our own."

It was West's first on-the-record briefing to reporters since he assumed his post last month.

Nov 05 10:17

LGBTQ - Take Note At What Real Discrimination Looks Like

Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan at the end of August, the persecution of the country’s LGBT+ community has increased substantially, driving many to live in hiding, fearing for their lives. “We now know for sure the Taliban has a ‘kill list,’” said the head of the Rainbow Railroad, a Canadian NGO helping Afghans to escape into exile.

The situation for the LGBT+ community in Afghanistan has never been easy. Same-sex relations have always been taboo in the Muslim-majority country, where – even under the former Western-backed Government – non-heterosexual relations were illegal. They could lead to up to two years in prison.

Nov 04 06:44

"Shocker": Pentagon Review Finds 'No Misconduct' Or Legal Violations In Kabul Drone Strike That Killed Children

What's being called an "independent" Pentagon investigation has now concluded over the Aug.29 drone strike on a car in Kabul which killed innocent civilians at a moment US troops were overseeing a desperate, chaotic evacuation from the Afghan capital's airport. US defense officials had initially hailed it as a "successful" operation to kill ISIS-K terrorists.

It was widely seen as a 'revenge' strike for the days prior ISIS suicide attack at an airport gate which killed 13 American troops and 169 Afghans. Weeks later, a New York Times investigation revealed the strike actually took out a local worker for a US humanitarian organization named Zemerai Ahmadi and his nine family members - seven of which were children. Meanwhile the Pentagon kept altering its narrative of events until belatedly admitting the mass killing of an innocent family.

Nov 02 12:49

US Army Announces It Now Identifies As Winner Of Afghan War

America’s most embarrassing military failure is no more. In fact, it never existed at all. Early Friday morning, the United States Department of Defense announced that henceforth, it identifies as the winner of the 20-year war in Afghanistan.

The change means that once again, America’s troops are undefeated in all wars stretching back to the nation’s founding. While America has won many cisvictories in its long military history, the new announcement makes Afghanistan the countries first transvictory. The Vietnam War, another prior defeat, came out of the closet as “more of a draw, really” in 1997.

“To be honest, we always knew we were the real winners, but after existing for more than 200 years in a transphobic society, we didn’t feel comfortable enough to come out with our true selves,” Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley said in a press conference at the Pentagon.

Nov 02 07:34

The Pentagon quietly removed more than 130,000 Afghanistan War photos and videos from public view

The Pentagon has quietly removed a massive collection of Afghanistan War footage totaling more than 120,000 photos and 17,000 videos from its official visual record.

The images and videos, which date back more than a decade, were previously published to the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service, or DVIDS, a vast repository of public domain material that’s available for use by the public and the press.

The Defense Department began archiving the imagery in August and September as it was working to get Afghans out of the country, said Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby, who noted that the U.S. government continues to try to help Afghans who need to leave.

Kirby said on Monday that he made the decision to temporarily archive any images and videos that could put Afghans in danger.

Nov 01 11:29

Now Is the Time to Be Angry, Remembering Forgotten Afghanistan

Ann Jones began her remarkable book Kabul in Winter: Life Without Peace in Afghanistan this way: "I went to Afghanistan after the bombing stopped. Somehow, I felt obliged to help pick up the pieces. I was a New Yorker who had always lived downtown, and for a long time after the towers fell I experienced moments when I couldn’t get my bearings… Four thousand collateral civilian deaths in Kabul brought no consolation for the death of thousands from around the world in the fallen towers of the city that had so long been my home. I thought America had lost its bearing, too. So I left."

Nov 01 10:19

Taliban Says 'Recognize Us Or Else'

The Taliban threatened the U.S. and other countries on Saturday by demanding recognition of their government in Afghanistan, saying that a failure to do so and the continued freezing of Afghan funds abroad would incite issues, not only for the country but for the world.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told reporters Saturday that the Afghan people have a right to have their government acknowledged by the U.S., Reuters reported.

"Our message to America is, if unrecognition continues, Afghan problems continue, it is the problem of the region and could turn into a problem for the world," Mujahid said.

Nov 01 07:45

US-Trained Afghan Spies & Special Forces Are Joining ISIS For 'Protection' Against Taliban

Many former national Afghan forces who are now being hunted by the Taliban after their US military backers withdrew from the country in August are turning to the Islamic State for protection, a new investigative Wall Street Journal report finds.

Also among those joining the ranks of ISIS in Afghanistan, or ISIS-K, are members of Afghanistan's US-trained intelligence service. "The number of defectors joining the terrorist group is relatively small, but growing, according to people who know these men, to former Afghan security officials and to the Taliban," The Wall Street Journal writes.

Nov 01 07:06

Why are most Afghan evacuees still housed at U.S. military camps?

When Taliban fighters hunting for Ahmad Shoaib Durgee knocked on his door in Kabul, Afghanistan, he scrambled to escape with his family of six to reunite with his sister in Sacramento.

Afghan evacuees and soldiers play soccer in September at a military camp in Ft. McCoy, Wis. (Pool Photo)© Provided by LA Times Afghan evacuees and soldiers play soccer in September at a military camp in Ft. McCoy, Wis. (Pool Photo)
Two months after they were flown to the U.S., they remain among 53,200 evacuees held at Ft. Lee, Va., and seven other military camps nationwide.

Durgee, 37, who qualified for a visa because he had worked as a security guard for American officials, says he feels fortunate to have been evacuated to a camp where he doesn't have to live in a tent. But he's itching to leave the military housing. After hearing that those headed to California face longer waits, he changed his requested destination to Richmond, Va., where he has friends.

Oct 30 06:34

85% Of Afghans Face Food Insecurity In Upcoming Winter

Food crisis forecasting for Afghanistan, called terrifying by the FAO, is projecting more than half of the country’s population will experience acute food shortages this winter unless actions are taken.

As Statista's Katharina Buchholz details below, according to reports by The Integrated Food Security Phase Classification, 85 percent in the country are to experience any type of food insecurity, including food stress classified as non-acute, between November 2021 and March 2022.

Oct 30 06:30

SIGAR Pressured by the State Department to Redact Afghanistan Reports

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) said Friday that after Kabul fell to the Taliban, he was pressured by the State Department to redact information from SIGAR reports. Since 2008, SIGAR has documented the corruption and waste involved in Washington’s failed nation-building project in Afghanistan.

SIGAR chief John Sopko told the annual Military Reporters & Editors Association Conference that the State Department asked him to “temporarily suspend access” to all “audit, inspection, and financial audit … reports” from the SIGAR website. The Department claimed it wanted the information removed to protect Afghan allies of the US, but Sopko said he never got an explanation of how reports that have been on the internet for years could put anyone in danger.

Oct 30 06:28

Like Afghanistan, a War for Taiwan is Unwinnable

Over the last two years, many foreign policy experts asked if Kabul would resemble the chaos of Saigon in 1975. It seems such questions about a war that cost thousands of American lives were fully warranted—and applying the lessons learned from both Vietnam and Afghanistan could prove fruitful when considering the possibility of the United States intervening militarily to defend Taiwan from China.

At its root, the causes of failure in both Vietnam and in Afghanistan have been essentially the same: the United States became embroiled in a civil war and ended up on the wrong side of nationalism, a force that proved impossible to tame, despite all the high technology of the U.S. military. The Taliban and the Vietcong had completely different ideologies, diametrically opposite in some respects, but their common plank was the desire to drive the foreign interlopers away.

Oct 29 05:56

Revealed: Biden Allowed Entrance Of Non-Vetted Refugees

It was revealed on Tuesday that President Biden gave orders back in August during the Afghanistan evacuation efforts to fill planes with Afghan refugees, giving little vetting to those boarding planes.

In an August 18 email from Gregory Floyd with the subject line "Presidential Directive," Floyd wrote: "Team, President Biden phones Ambassador Wilson with the following directive about who to clear to board evacuation flights."

Oct 29 05:37

Damning Report Details How Four US Intel Agencies Failed To Predict Rapid Taliban Victory

The Wall Street Journal has obtained and reviewed two dozen classified US intelligence assessments on Afghanistan from four different agencies including the CIA, DIA (Defense Intelligence Agency), the State Dept.'s intelligence bureau, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI).

All of them examined Taliban advances across the country from the spring of 2020 through the middle of last summer, and while they consistently forecast the eventual collapse of Afghan national forces if US support was withdrawn, not a single agency assessment foresaw the group's ultra-fast takeover of Kabul by August 15 and the entire country even as US forces were still on the ground attempting to evacuate personnel in Kabul.

Oct 28 06:55

China Urges US To Immediately Lift Sanctions On Taliban As "Economic Chaos" Looms

China is now urging the United States to immediately lift sanctions against the Taliban and unfreeze all of Afghanistan's assets abroad. As part of its appeal, Beijing is offering assurances to Washington that the hardline Islamist group will "effectively" protect the rights of women and minorities.

Beijing is further warning the West of looming "economic chaos" in the war-torn central Asian country if more is not urgently done to relieve the economic pressure and allow for greater stability. "China urges the Western countries, led by the United States as a whole, to lift sanctions, and calls on all parties to engage with the Afghan Taliban in a rational and pragmatic manner," Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said this week following two days of talks with the Taliban which concluded Tuesday in Doha.

Oct 28 06:41

Weapons execs lament losses from Afghanistan exit, tout DOD budget increase

Speaking to investors on Tuesday, two of the biggest U.S. weapons manufacturers provided estimates on how the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, a war that cost U.S. taxpayers over $2 trillion and took over 243,000 lives, impacted their bottom lines. Both companies also expressed enthusiasm about a bipartisan push to increase the 2022 defense budget by $29.3 billion, a five percent increase over the 2021 budget and more than $10 billion more than President Biden requested.

Approximately half of the defense budget goes to contractors like Lockheed Martin and Raytheon, both of whom explained to investors how the end of a 20 year war will impact their profits while still painting a rosy picture of ballooning defense spending driving corporate revenue and padding the bottomline for shareholders.

Raytheon CEO Gregory Hayes, who took home nearly $21 million in compensation last year, acknowledged that the end of a war was bad for the bottomline, telling investors:

Oct 28 06:39

Khalilzad urges US engage with Taliban to avert Afghan collapse

The former United States special envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad said the Biden administration should engage with the Taliban to help ease the humanitarian crisis unfolding in the country now.

Khalilzad, who negotiated the US withdrawal with the Taliban ending a 20-year military presence, on Wednesday defended the agreement and Taliban leadership while blaming former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani for the failure of peace talks and the fall of Kabul.

Oct 28 05:47

NBC’s McFadden: State Department Doesn’t Have ‘Real Number’ of People with Legal Status Stuck in Afghanistan, ‘Not Really Monitoring’

On Wednesday’s broadcast of NBC’s “Today,” NBC News Senior Investigative and Legal Correspondent Cynthia McFadden said the State Department is “not really monitoring” and doesn’t “have the real number” of people with legal status to live in the United States who are still stuck in Afghanistan, but they estimate there are thousands.

While discussing her report on the “thousands of people the State Department acknowledged have the legal status to live in the U.S.” who are still stuck in Afghanistan, McFadden stated, “Well, one of the interesting things is they’re not really monitoring. They don’t have the real number. But the secretary of state said thousands they estimate are stuck.”

Oct 28 05:25

Russia advises countries bordering Afghanistan to shut out NATO forces from region after Taliban takes control after US withdrawal

Moscow has called on Central Asian nations to reject any plans for NATO troops to be stationed in the region around Afghanistan, following the US-led bloc's hurried withdrawal from Kabul and the fall of the city to the Taliban.

On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that, "we once again request that Afghanistan's neighboring countries prevent the military presence of the US and NATO on their soil, as they plan to move in there in light of the troop withdrawal from Afghanistan."

Earlier that day, in an interview with Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Yuri Kokov, the deputy secretary of Russia's Security Council, said that the US is seeking to boost its military presence in the region, under the pretense of conducting anti-terrorism operations.

Oct 28 05:21

Lavrov Warns Terrorists Disguised As "Refugees" Are Trying To Infiltrate Neighboring Countries

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warns that terrorists posing as refugees are trying to infiltrate neighboring countries following the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.

Lavrov made the comments during a ministerial level meeting of Afghanistan’s neighbors (Russia, China, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan).

“The current task on the agenda is to ease the effects of and control migration flows from Afghanistan, because terrorist and criminal elements posing as refugees may infiltrate neighboring countries and have already been trying to do so,” said Lavrov.

The Russian FM also called on the countries to resist attempts by NATO and the United States to forge a presence on their territory.

Following the Taliban takeover of the country, a top diplomat warned that “not even tanks” can stop a potentially large wave of Afghan refugees heading to Europe.

Oct 26 10:54

Will The Disastrous Withdrawal From Afghanistan Also Happen In Iraq?

Over the last few months, the world has been watching the disastrous US withdrawal from Afghanistan and what followed in the aftermath - the violent takeover by the Taliban and a massive U-turn on human rights for all, especially women. Over the coming months, the US will be withdrawing its remaining troops from Iraq, currently standing at around 2,500. The withdrawal may also turn ugly and that the old threats may resurface. Indeed, the UN assesses that there are approximately 10,000 Daesh fighters in Syria and Iraq combined. The UN has warned that Daesh has been using the Covid-19 crisis to re-group and consolidate power in the region once again. Once the US withdraws completely, Daesh fighters may use the limbo to try to increase its power and influence in the territories as before.

Oct 26 07:01

In meeting with John Kerry, PM Imran Khan stresses release of Afghan economic resources

Prime Minister Imran Khan stressed the need for positive engagement with Afghanistan and the release of seized economic resources and financial assets for the welfare of Afghan people in a meeting with American diplomat John Kerry.

Countries are yet to recognise the Taliban-led regime, which has been isolated by the international community since they took over after ousting Ashraf Ghani in mid-August.

During the meeting, the premier urged the international community to work pragmatically to preserve peace and security, prevent an economic collapse and avert a humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

PM Imran Khan also underscored the importance of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan for Pakistan and the region.

Oct 26 06:16

Report: EU to open new mission in Kabul

The EU foreign service is to open a mission in Kabul by the end of November, the FT reported Sunday, citing sources. The representation would not be an embassy, as the EU has not recognised the Taliban government. The EU office is also to be used by member states' diplomats. "There's only so much you can do from Doha," a source said. China, Russia, and Turkey never closed their embassies.

Oct 25 08:00

Islamic Emirate Reacts to Newly-Formed 'Resistance Council'

A number of officials of the former government along with mujahideen leaders recently announced the formation of a new political movement called the "High Council of National Resistance of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan,” which sparked reactions from the Islamic Emirate.

Abdulrab Rasul Sayyaf, a Jihadi leader, and Atta Mohammad Noor, leader of the splinter faction of Jamiat-e-Islami, announced on Facebook the formation of a new political movement, saying it consists of a number of political mainstream groups in the country.

The new movement in a statement insisted on reaching an agreement with the Islamic Emirate via dialogue, but it warned that if the Islamic Emirate does not talk with them, they will take up weapons.

Islamic Emirate spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, reacting to the new movement, said no one can threaten the people of Afghanistan in the name of resistance or anything else.

Oct 25 07:09

Afghanistan hurtling toward collapse, Sweden and Pakistan say

Afghanistan will shortly collapse into chaos unless the international community acts rapidly, Swedish and Pakistani ministers warned on Saturday.

Afghanistan plunged into crisis after the hardline Islamist Taliban movement drove out the Western-backed government in August triggering the abrupt end of billions of dollars in assistance to its aid-dependent economy.

"The country is on the brink of collapse and that collapse is coming faster than we thought," Swedish development minister Per Olsson Fridh told Reuters in Dubai.
He said economic freefall could provide an environment for terrorist groups to thrive, but that Sweden would not channel money through the Taliban, instead boosting its humanitarian contributions through Afghan civil society groups.

Many countries and multilateral institutions have halted development assistance but increased humanitarian aid since August, reluctant to legitimize the new Taliban rulers.

Oct 25 06:57

Afghan baby girl sold for $500 by starving family

Afghanistan is facing the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world, with the country seeing a sharp deterioration in the situation since the Taliban seized power in August.

International funds which propped up the country’s fragile economy have been stopped as the world debates how to deal with the Taliban regime.

The United Nations has issued a stark warning – that millions will die if urgent aid does not reach the country soon. In this video, the BBC’s Yogita Limaye travels to Herat, in the west of the country, and witnesses first-hand the dire situation on the ground.

Oct 25 06:09

Biden Abandoned Critical Mineral Reserves In Afghanistan While Thwarting Mining At Home

Republicans on the House Committee on Natural Resources held a forum Oct. 22 to discuss how President Biden’s exit from Afghanistan left massive, untapped reserves of rare-earth metals, lithium, and other vital minerals in Taliban hands, potentially opening them up to exploitation by China.

Speakers said the Biden administration has simultaneously worked to hinder key mining projects in the United States, such as Minnesota’s Twin Metals copper-nickel project and Arizona’s Resolution copper mine, which would allow the United States to produce many of those minerals at home, thereby avoiding dependence on the Taliban or the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

“It’s almost like it’s intentional, to stop U.S. production of these critical minerals and elements,” said Ranking Member Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.).

Oct 24 07:38

Revealed: Biden ABANDONED Far More Americans Than Thought

One of the questions that managed the public's attention over the Biden administration's botched departure from Afghanistan was how many Americans were left in the nation. The White House gave diverse answers back then.

The Biden White House told the public they didn't know.

Although, months later, according to the Washington Free Beacon, we have a more exact amount — almost 400 — far beyond the hazy estimates provided by officials.

Oct 22 11:11

State Dept Finally ADMITS They Lied About The Number Of Americans Trapped In Afghanistan — ‘It’s Significantly Higher’

Back in August, the State Department claimed that there were “roughly 100” Americans left in Afghanistan after the botched pull out. Today they have admitted that that was a lie.

On Thursday the State Department finally gave Congress a definitive number on how many Americans that are still trapped in Afghanistan living in fear of their lives because our Coward-in-Chief left them behind, and it’s a lot higher than the “100” previously stated:

Oct 22 07:18

UN sets up trust fund for Afghanistan amid cash shortages

The United Nations says it has set up a special trust fund to provide urgently-needed cash directly to Afghans through a system that taps into donor funds frozen since the Taliban takeover in August.

With the local economy “imploding”, the aim is to inject liquidity into Afghan households to permit them to survive this winter and remain in their homeland despite the turmoil, it said on Thursday.

Oct 21 05:52

Displaced Families Continue to Live in Harsh Conditions

Internally displaced families are living in harsh conditions as the winter approaches and the displacement camps face food shortages.

Families claimed that five children died in the past week from cold, hunger and lack of medicine in the camps.

Humaira, originally from Takhar province, left her home three months ago to seek security and safety for her family in Kabul.

“Some families are taking the cash, then some members of the family come back in the camps to receive more aid and money, but there are many families who have not received aid and are living in bad conditions,” Humaira told TOLONews.

Nafas Gul, who has a newborn child, said there is a lack of health facilities in the camps. “I gave birth in Lisi Maryam ( an area in the north of Kabul city), my infant was naked for several hours because I did not have clothes for my infant."

Oct 20 08:44

Afghan Refugees Out of Control, Military Sends in “Gender and Protection Advisors” to Quell Domestic Violence

Such is the wife-beating and other domestic violence among Afghans at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin that the military has deployed “gender and protection” advisors.

Military officials receive calls every day, the newspaper reported, about incorrigible Afghan men. Apparently, they have nothing better to do than beat and harass women and molest kids.

Weeks ago, federal prosecutors charged an Afghan man with strangling his wife and another with molesting two boys.

But those, apparently, are just two examples. More will be uncovered.

Oct 19 09:57

Imported Afghan Refugee Rapes Two Children in Fort McCoy Bathroom

An affidavit is alleging that a newly-imported Afghan refugee recently raped two children, aged 12 and 14, in a bathroom at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin.

According to the affidavit, another refugee reported seeing 20-year-old Bahrullah Noori viciously molesting two children in a bathroom on Sept. 11, as Americans become enriched by the Afghani cultural practice of Bacha Bazi making its way to our shores. The children reportedly corroborated the story and said Noori threatened to beat them if they told.

Noori is currently housed in the Dane County Jail awaiting trial proceedings. No date for his trial has been announced. He could spend life in prison if he is convicted on a charge of sexual acts with a minor including the use of force.

Oct 18 06:44

Starving Afghan Parents Forced To Sell Children To Survive  

A humanitarian crisis is quickly unfolding in Afghanistan as the country fell under Taliban rule about one month ago. The conditions are so disturbing that Afghan parents are selling their children to survive, according to WSJ.

Saleha, a 40-year-old mother of six in western Afghanistan, makes 70 cents per day cleaning homes and has incurred an insurmountable debt of around $550.

"If life continues to be this awful, I will kill my children and myself," Saleha told WSJ. "I don't even know what we will eat tonight."

She told the Journal her husband doesn't have any work, and the only way out of debt is to sell her 3-year-old daughter to her local lender.

"I will try to find money to save my daughter's life," her husband said.

Khalid Ahmad, the lender, told WSJ he would settle the debt for the young girl:

"I also don't have money. They haven't paid me back," he said. "So there is no option but taking the daughter."

Oct 18 06:18

Pentagon, State Department square off on Afghanistan accountability

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle say constant finger-pointing between the Pentagon and State Department is making it difficult to get a full accounting of the messy withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Recent hearings on Afghanistan have left members of Congress frustrated as top officials from the State Department and Department of Defense (DOD) lay blame on the other at congressional hearings on Afghanistan.

“When the State Department is here and we asked them a question they say, ‘Well, you have to ask the Defense Department that,” Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) said at a recent hearing. “And now today, again, Defense Department people are before us. And the question was asked and the answer ... was, 'Well, you'll have to ask the State Department that.”

Oct 17 08:02

Don’t Expect Foreign Policy Experts to be Held Accountable for Afghanistan

The horrific events of 9/11 inevitably brought the US back to Afghanistan, but this time with a full-fledged military force. To say this military venture was a boondoggle would be an understatement. The financial costs of the US’s twenty-year Afghan conflict have been staggering, with estimates from Brown University’s Cost of War Project pointing to $2.3 trillion spent in this war effort. Over twenty-four hundred American service members lost their lives along with seventy-one thousand Afghan civilians during the war.

Oct 16 06:59

Displaced Afghan Children Dying from Cold, No Healthcare

At least ten children have died of cold weather and lack of healthcare facilities in various camps where internally displaced families have settled in Kabul, medical officials at the camps said.

According to officials, about half of the displaced children are suffering from malnutrition and are struggling with various health conditions.

Abdul Wasi, a displaced person from Badakhshan province, said he lost his newborn baby Thursday night. “I borrowed some cash and took my infant to the hospital, but I had no money to buy medicine, then he died.”

“Three children died during a month at this camp due to coldness and the absence of health possibilities. These (people) seriously need winter assistance,” said Mateen, a doctor.

The Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation declared last week that the ministry has begun the process of returning displaced families from the capital city of Kabul to their home provinces.

Oct 16 06:37

Violence Undermines China’s Plans in Afghanistan, Risks Luring it Into Quagmire

China's top national security decisionmakers are stunned by a devastating suicide bombing attack in Afghanistan last week reportedly carried out by a Uighur Muslim, sources say, provoking Beijing to either disrupt its march toward greater investments in the Taliban government or to commit further to the quagmire that has stymied other superpowers for decades.

The Islamic State group's affiliate in Afghanistan, known as ISIS-K, quickly claimed responsibility for the deadly attack at a Shiite Muslim mosque in Kunduz on Friday. But in an even more brazen and rare move, it also provided a crucial detail about the attacker, specifying that the bomber was of the ethnicity that largely originates from China's restive Xinjiang Province. Beijing's attempts to stamp out violent extremists among its Uighur population has emerged as perhaps its most sensitive problem at home and nearby, as shown through the lengths it's willing to go to quash the threat it perceives.

Oct 16 06:26

Pentagon offers unspecified ‘condolence payments’ for 7 Afghan children & aid worker murdered in botched drone strike

The US military is offering “condolence payments” to a family in Afghanistan after a badly planned drone strike killed 10 civilians, including seven children, in the country’s capital in August, though did not provide any numbers.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby revealed the offer on Friday, stating that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin made a “commitment” to the Akhmadi family for compensation following the August 29 drone strike, “including offering ex gratia condolence payments” and State Department assistance in relocating family members to the United States.

The offer was raised during a virtual meeting between Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl and Dr. Steven Kwon, who employed one of the Akhmadis killed in the strike at his US-based aid organization, Nutrition & Education International, long active in Afghanistan.

Oct 15 10:31

Kabul orphanage struggles to feed its children as cash runs low

Ahmad Khalil Mayan, programme director at a large Kabul orphanage, says he is cutting back on the amount of fruit and meat he gives the children each week because the home is running out of money.

For the last two months, since the Afghan Taliban seized control of the country and millions of dollars in aid suddenly dried up, he has been desperately calling and emailing donors, both foreign and local, who supported him before.

"Unfortunately, most of them have left the country - Afghan donors, foreign donors, embassies. When I call them or email them, no one is answering me," Mayan, 40, told Reuters at the sprawling Shamsa Children's Village in the north of the capital.

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