Report Wire - Afghanistan: What will the Taliban do with out an enemy to battle?

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Afghanistan: What will the Taliban do with out an enemy to battle?

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Afghanistan: What will the Taliban do without an enemy to fight?

In the primary half of August, Taliban forces toppled the earlier, internationally backed Afghan authorities in a lightning offensive.
This swept Taliban fighters, who had spent years “in the mountains” — an usually literal euphemism for waging guerrilla warfare — into cities, cities, and common military bases deserted by former authorities forces.
Now, the militant group desires to construct “strong security forces,” as one Taliban commander put it to DW.
However, he and different group leaders battle to articulate what precisely their objective is, as their major enemies have left the battlefield.
“The [Taliban] special forces units were not only established to fight the former government, but any group that poses a risk, such as Daesh,” Usman Jawhari, the long-serving commander of Taliban particular forces within the distant jap Afghan province of Nuristan, advised DW.
Daesh is the Arabic acronym for the self-declared Islamic State (IS).
Who is Taliban nonetheless preventing in Afghanistan?
While IS has been energetic in Afghanistan since at the very least early 2015, the group has remained largely confined to the provinces of Kabul, Nangarhar, and Kunar.
In these provinces, the Taliban have performed operations focusing on IS previously and have continued to take action since they took energy.
However, these sorts of operations usually are not quite a few sufficient to maintain your entire Taliban power busy. In Nuristan province, IS has but to say or perform any assaults.
“In Nuristan, there is no Daesh. Currently, there is no enemy at all around,” mentioned “Janat,” a member of the Taliban particular forces in Nuristan.
Jawhari additionally acknowledged that threats to the Taliban have decreased. “Compared to before, they are less than 1%,” he mentioned.
However, he added that Afghanistan “as any other country, needs a strong army” with a purpose to shield itself in opposition to anybody who may wish to threaten it.
Asked about particular threats to the Taliban’s self-declared “Afghan Emirate,” Jawhari mentioned “time will tell.” However, he added that the US withdrawal eliminated the Taliban’s important international adversary.
In this context, he additionally reiterated the Taliban’s official line that the group doesn’t pose any risk to different international locations and that their plans are confined to Afghanistan.
What is the Taliban’s plan?
The lack of readability concerning the aims of Taliban forces after the defeat of the Afghan Republic isn’t restricted to Nuristan province.
For instance, after the Taliban introduced new “martyrdom-seeking” particular forces items within the northeastern provinces of Badakhshan, Takhar, and Kunduz to guard Afghanistan from “enemies,” native sources in Badakhshan advised DW that the Taliban didn’t specify who these enemies are and that it stays unclear what precisely these items are doing.
In this absence of a transparent enemy and mission, the boys of Nuristan’s Taliban particular forces unit are, in line with certainly one of them, busy with navy coaching, non secular research, coaching to drive heavy autos, and constructing upkeep. They additionally patrol, however solely within the neighborhood of their compound, Jawhari mentioned.
Taliban forces stand by
Although the Taliban introduced commanders for his or her new navy corps on October 4, the precise construction of the power stays unclear.
Before the Taliban took management of the Afghan authorities, fighters had been below the command of the navy fee, Jawhari mentioned. This Taliban fee was chargeable for all Taliban fighters.
As of late September, fighters had been “still awaiting orders whether we will be under the Ministry of Defense or the Ministry of Interior Affairs,” Jawhari added.
The Ministry of Interior Affairs in Afghanistan’s former, toppled authorities was chargeable for sustaining police particular forces all through Afghanistan. The Ministry of Defense did, basically, not have a monopoly on navy forces. It stays to be seen if the Taliban may even rule below an identical setup.
“While accounts of unclear military structures are numerous from across the country, this is most visible in Kabul, where, for example, several commanders claim to be responsible for the same area or issue,” an Afghanistan-based safety analyst advised DW below situation of anonymity for safety causes.
“When these commanders come from different areas of the country — which is common — competing claims can result in political, at times even violent, disputes,” the analyst mentioned.
Elizabeth Threlkeld, the Director of the South Asia Program on the Stimson Center in Washington DC, advised DW that “the transition from fighting to governing is particularly challenging for groups like the Taliban’s special forces.”
“They were key in securing the Taliban’s military objectives, but their future mission is less clear now that the war has largely been won. While the Taliban have proven adept at maintaining cohesion, continuing to do so going forward will require defining their future role,” she added.