Kabul fell because of 'kleptocratic leadership', stop blaming us: Pakistan envoy writes to US Congressman

If Pakistan is responsible for the Taliban gaining strength in Afghanistan, then why the US is blaming the Afghanistan army's drooping morale, Asad Majeed Khan wrote in a scathing letter to US Congressman Michael G Waltz.
Pakistan ambassador to US said that Kabul's fall was sudden and shocking but was not surprising at all. (AFP)
Pakistan ambassador to US said that Kabul's fall was sudden and shocking but was not surprising at all. (AFP)
Published on Sep 01, 2021 09:03 AM IST
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By | Written by Poulomi Ghosh

Pakistan's ambassador to the United States, Asad Majeed Khan, has slammed US Congressman Michael G Waltz for writing to President Joe Biden seeking sanction on Pakistan for their alleged support to the Taliban and said that the US should stop blaming Pakistan for the fall of Kabul. If Pakistan's "military strategy" was somehow responsible factor in the defeat of the 300,000-strong Afghan army, whom the US had trained for so many years, then the US assessment that the Afghan army lost morale does not hold water, the ambassador wrote. The fall of Kabul proved the futility of the investment of the United States in the country, if anything, he wrote.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan invited global criticism after he said that the Taliban are not a military outfit that his army (in Pakistan) can hunt them down. After the fall of Kabul, Pakistani ministers also spoke to their counterparts in other countries on the issue of supporting Afghanistan at this crucial juncture.

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Congressman Michael G Waltz mentioned the Pak-Taliban conduit and sought the US sanction of Pakistan. "...I ask that your administration also consider sanctioning Pakistan unless they change course and make greater efforts to prevent the Taliban from using their border region to regroup between firefights," Waltz had written to Biden in August.

Asad Majeed Khan's reply has come in this background where he, in turn, blamed the US for the fall of Kabul.

"The contention that Pakistan's military strategy was somehow the decisive factor in the defeat of the 300,000-strong Afghan National Defence and Security Forces-- trained and equipped at the cost of at least $83 billion to the American taxpayer-- does not square with the US government's assessment about the issued of low morale, desertions and ghost soldiers that had long plagues the ANDSF," he wrote.

Pakistan has been consistently saying that it has no favourites in Afghanistan and would work with any government in the country. Pakistan has also joined the United States, China, Russia is "explicitly opposing any effort to impose a government by force" in Kabul, Khan wrote in his scathing letter.

"The swift collapse of the Afghan government has, if anything, proven the futility of investing more effort and money into finding a military solution to a political problem," Khan wrote.

Khan wrote that though Afghanistan's fall was sudden and shocking, it was not surprising at all as the Afghan government had been steadily losing territory for years. "..demoralised soldiers do not fight for a corrupt, kleptocratic leadership that will bolt at the first hint of trouble," Khan said adding that Pakistan has its embassy functioning in Kabul and it will keep its doors and borders open to the Afghan people.

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