The situation in Afghanistan is shocking the world. It is also leaving a series of questions. Will the Taliban’s tyranny reemerge? Did the Taliban truly change? Why did the U.S. make such a clumsy withdrawal? Was it misjudgment? Is there some conspiracy? Will China be the next victim of Afghanistan? Will Afghanistan become the hotbed of terrorist groups, such Al-Qaeda, again?
These are the questions from the perspective of outside observers. The question that matters the most to Afghan people is ‘Are gunshots going to stop and peace to return?’
Afghanistan is called the graveyard of empires as well as a country that is never conquered. In fact, it had been conquered several times. However, nobody has been successful at a long-term rule. Some say that ‘a country that is never conquered’ is the wrong way to describe the country. Afghanistan is not a unified country. The region includes 20 tribes and 30 languages. When it is said that Mongolia, the U.K., the Soviet Union, and the U.S. failed to rule the country, it means they failed to unify the region called Afghanistan into a single country.
Economic communication is important to social unification. Supplies should be distributed and people should actively travel and interact with each other. Afghanistan’s rough landscape prevents such unification. Two-thirds of the country with rugged mountains and deserts is at an elevation of 1,500 meters or higher.
Afghan tribes have fought countless times in such an isolated and rough region. Even before invasions by large countries, some parts of it were always at war. As the Taliban seizes power, it may look like the country can be tightly unified under the Islamic rules and theocracy. However, they failed in the past. Regional tribes are still very much independent and warlords may arise.
Unfortunately and sadly, peace in Afghanistan will only be achieved after it builds a national foundation to get rid of division by the Taliban and different regions, tribal wars, civil wars, and violence in the country.