Title

Kabul at War: The Widening Gap between the State and itsCitizens

Author Information

Florian Weigand

Date of Publication

2021 12:00 AM

Security Theme

Political Stability

Keywords

Kabul, war, Taliban

Description

There was an atmosphere of hope in Afghanistan in February 2020, when the United States and the Taliban signed an agreement on the withdrawal of international troops from the country, conditional of intra-Afghan negotiations between the Taliban and the government of Afghanistan. After more than 10,000 civilian casualties annually for six years, there appeared to be an opportunity to end the bloodshed. Cautious voices pointed out that a successful peace process was going to take many years and warned that the agreement was driven primarily by US domestic politics, with peace in Afghanistan being a marginal concern. While the number of civilian casualties in the first nine months of 2020 reduced by 30%, the war in Afghanistan remained one of the deadliest in the word. In addition, a wave of assassinations has targeted civilians across the country, even in Kabul City, adding to bombings and a rising criminal problem and resulting in wide-spread fear. The insecurity does not only affect hopes in the peace process, it also undermines people’s trust in the ability of the state to protect its citizens. In addition, as the state is trying to protect itself with added security measures, it becomes even more distant from the people, further undermining its own legitimacy.

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Jan 1st, 12:00 AM

Kabul at War: The Widening Gap between the State and itsCitizens

There was an atmosphere of hope in Afghanistan in February 2020, when the United States and the Taliban signed an agreement on the withdrawal of international troops from the country, conditional of intra-Afghan negotiations between the Taliban and the government of Afghanistan. After more than 10,000 civilian casualties annually for six years, there appeared to be an opportunity to end the bloodshed. Cautious voices pointed out that a successful peace process was going to take many years and warned that the agreement was driven primarily by US domestic politics, with peace in Afghanistan being a marginal concern. While the number of civilian casualties in the first nine months of 2020 reduced by 30%, the war in Afghanistan remained one of the deadliest in the word. In addition, a wave of assassinations has targeted civilians across the country, even in Kabul City, adding to bombings and a rising criminal problem and resulting in wide-spread fear. The insecurity does not only affect hopes in the peace process, it also undermines people’s trust in the ability of the state to protect its citizens. In addition, as the state is trying to protect itself with added security measures, it becomes even more distant from the people, further undermining its own legitimacy.