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One year on, Afghanistan still suffers from US-inflicted pain

By Liu Jianna | | Updated: 2022-08-16 14:50
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Residents visit an outdoor market in Kabul on Tuesday. LILLIAN SUWANRUMPHA/AFP

Afghans celebrated the one-year anniversary of the US withdrawal from the war-torn country, which is now a national holiday, on Monday. As if intended as a ridicule of Washington which has spent $300 million each day in the past 20 years but in the end fled in disorder, marchers shouted victory slogans beside the US embassy in Kabul.

But the chaotic and humiliating withdrawal of the US forces one year ago has left a tattered and impoverished country in its wake. The country's bleak economic situation has not been helped by the US' freezing of $7 billion Afghan assets. Now nearly half of its people are suffering from acute hunger, the United Nations says. Three meals a day remains a distant dream for many.

The US' plundering of the country's precious funds exposes its extreme selfishness and inhumanity. And it seems ultra hypocritical of Washington to find fault with the Afghanistan administration considering the fact that it is the one that has created all the chaos and misery for the landlocked country and its people in the first place.

The key to the reconstruction of nation and improving the wellbeing of its more than 30 million people lies in releasing the billions of dollars of Afghan government assets. The Joe Biden administration has refused to do so on the grounds that the funds could end up in the hands of terrorists. That is outrageous since what the US did in Afghanistan in the past decades resembles terrorism more than the actions of any other organization.

To begin with, it launched the Afghanistan war that killed at least 174,000 Afghans, more than 30,000 civilians included, made nearly one-third of Afghan population refugees, and forced nearly half the population to suffer acute hunger. It did so, in the name of anti-terrorism, which has proved to be a lie meant to serve its own narrow self-interests.

While the Taliban administration is not free from criticism, its governance of the country is more justified than the US alliance which is obviously indifferent to the Afghan people's pains. If the US could resist the impulse to interfere with others' internal affairs and leave a country's business to its own people, it would do much more to promote global peace and development. Afghans, and people around the world, would be all the more thankful for it.

The author is a writer with China Daily.

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