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This man has a big hand behind the return of Taliban in Afghanistan

Afghanistan Crisis: Questions are being raised about the mysterious diplomat Zalmay Khalilzad, who was the main reason behind US failures in Iraq and now the return of Taliban to power in Afghanistan. Khalilzad, a prominent US diplomat of Afghan descent, has long been a controversial figure for his role in Washington’s “war on terror”. TRT World reported that he also led Washington’s talks with the Taliban, whom many see as the main harbinger of the Pashtun-dominated group’s lightning-speed victory in Afghanistan.

Following the Taliban’s surprisingly quick victory against US-trained Afghan forces, many government operators and experts are speculating on Washington’s role, particularly Khalilzad’s, in the Afghan group’s return to power. Some other experts believe that Khalilzad adopted a ‘special political agenda’ to promote his personal and family interests.

According to news agency IANS, Kamal Alam, a non-resident Senior Fellow of the Atlantic Council, says, “The one person responsible for the chaos and destruction in Afghanistan is Jalmay Khalilzad. He should be investigated for alleged financial corruption.” In 2014, finances related to Khalilzad were subject to an Austrian investigation, which, based on information from the US Department of Justice, froze his wife’s accounts in the European country after she was denied business activities in Iraq and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Related money laundering was suspected.

“This guy wanted to be the president of Afghanistan. He ran to be the president of Afghanistan. Nobody likes him. Everybody hates him,” Alam told TRT World. A Turkish source, who is closely acquainted with Khalilzad, spoke of him on condition of anonymity, and said he would have to publicly express “negative views” about someone he knew. know very well.

Prior to his appointment as the US ambassador to Afghanistan, some of his countrymen in Afghanistan had signed a petition accusing him of ‘ethno-nationalist inspired conduct’, which was his claim to the dominance of the Pashtun community after the US invasion. There was an indirect reference to the alleged support. Alam drew attention to the fact that Khalilzad should never have been in the top mediation position between the US and the Taliban after clarifying his political ambitions in his native country, Afghanistan.

Khalilzad reportedly wanted to challenge in the 2009 Afghan elections, but missed the deadline to file his candidacy. Alam asked the question, “How can an American official be neutral when he is running for the presidency of another country called Afghanistan?” Alam says that although he has been an active participant in ‘The Great Game of Afghanistan’ or ‘The Great Game of Afghanistan’, there is no way he can act as an independent consultant.

Khalilzad’s name was also considered by the former US President Donald Trump administration for the post of US Secretary of State. Ahmed Rashid, a Pakistani writer, also criticized him for ‘acting like a British Viceroy’. Before the Soviets and the Americans, the British also invaded Afghanistan. Alam believes that Khalilzad is no different from the Afghan warlord. “He is very much an Afghan warlord. His political agenda is the same as that of any other Afghan warlord,” he said.

Even with the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, Khalilzad’s political value may increase in Washington, as no American other than him has any idea of ​​what the Taliban might do next. “That’s why Biden (US President Joe Biden) has kept him, because he is the only man who can talk to the Taliban,” Alam says.

“It has failed in its mission,” says Ioannis Koskinas, a Senior Fellow of New America’s International Security Program. Ambassador Khalilzad signed an agreement in Doha in February 2020, which failed to achieve reconciliation and a political settlement between the belligerents.”

Koskinas told TRT World, “The Taliban were clear about their intention of a total takeover of Afghanistan. Don’t leave a mess. The Taliban achieved their goal, but Ambassador Khalilzad did not.”

Koskinas, a former US military officer who served in Afghanistan for years as a member of the Special Forces, also sharply criticized the Afghan peace process and Khalilzad’s role in it. He criticized Khalilzad, saying “Doha was a clever move by the Taliban to gain political legitimacy and credibility.” He added, “There has been little political process in the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan. When the Taliban’s political representatives were talking in Doha, their commanders were fighting in Afghanistan.”

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