Dec 1, 2008
The U.S. war, repression and absolutely barbaric economic and social conditions are what pushed more of the Afghan population toward the Taliban, broadening its support in the country.
Certainly, the Taliban represents reactionary, tribal policies for the population, and it would undoubtedly impose the same kind of despotic regime as it did before. But the enemy the population confronts right now is the U.S. – which is destroying the country while imposing its own dictatorship, along with the corrupt and venal Karzai government. Conditions are now worse than under the Taliban, and with the same reactionary Sharia law carried out in much of the country.
The Taliban’s reactionary social politics are certainly not the reason for this U.S. war. Nor are they the reason the U.S. is bombing the population! No – control over the region is why the U.S. has carried out a vicious war in Afghanistan now for more than seven years.
The hypocrisy of U.S. claims to be bringing liberation to the Afghan people is demonstrated by recent proposals: the U.S. is ready to cut a deal with “some elements” of the Taliban itself, that is, many of the warlords who went over to the Taliban. The Karzai government is already in negotiations with those warlords. The U.S. is not opposed to brutal reactionaries – so long as they’re the U.S.’s brutal reactionaries.
In pursuing the Taliban, the U.S. military has now gone past attacking the Afghan population into attacking the population in the tribal regions of neighboring Pakistan. Its attacks in the Pakistani tribal region began from the air by helicopters, missiles, jets and drones. By this summer, U.S. commando units were going into Pakistan to carry out raids and assassinations. In July, the Bush administration confirmed that it had given the formal go-ahead for the U.S. military to go into Pakistan.
Using many of the same methods in Pakistan that it has in Afghanistan, U.S. imperialism will get the same results. By murdering civilians, wreaking wanton destruction in their villages, and forcing hundreds of thousands to become refugees, U.S. incursions into Pakistan only produce greater hatred. Instead of weakening the insurgency, U.S. imperialism is spreading it – first of all, throughout the Pakistani tribal areas on the border of Afghanistan and then into other parts of Pakistan.
Pakistan is already a powder keg. The corrupt, despotic Pakistani regime, which has been one of U.S. imperialism’s main bulwarks of support in Central Asia for at least the last three decades, has become ever more parasitic, imposing worsening poverty and a collapsing economy and infrastructure on the great mass of the poor. The U.S. attacks on the Pakistan border regions risk discrediting Pakistan’s government even further, inflaming other parts of the population, thus increasing the chance of a bigger social explosion and a bigger war in Pakistan, a country of 170 million people.
The U.S. is not at the end of its wars in the Middle East and Central Asia. Just as the U.S. ruling class is engulfing the world in the greatest financial and economic crisis since the Great Depression, it is also feeding a regional war in the Middle East and Central Asia that could generalize.