Fallouts of US troop surge in Afghanistan

Monday, 01 May 2017 03:09 Written by  Heart of Asia Read 56 times

The emphasis of United States on military solution of Afghan conflict increases suspicions about the country’s intentions in Afghanistan. Although the superpower publicly supports political dialogue to end Afghan conflict and restore stability to Afghanistan, its actions are completely against its words in reality. Washington still prefers military solution to political solution, a position which definitely protracts the war that Afghans no longer want and can tolerate.

 

A recent indication of American accent on military solution is the efforts to increase its troop level in Afghanistan. The United States reportedly intends to send 5,000 additional troops to Afghanistan and 300 marines have already been deployed in southern Helmand province. While Washington may still remember the failed experience of its troop surge ordered by the Obama administration in 2009, the decision to increase US troop level in Afghanistan cannot have any other meaning, but to create a pretext to prolong the war. If troop surge could have permanently resolved Afghan imbroglio, Afghanistanwould have already been free of the current problems. 

Even though the US and NATO officially ended their combat role in Afghanistan in 2014, the US government granted more powers to its troops under the pretext that the situation was deteriorating in Afghanistan, which led to an increase in civilian casualties, a major driver of Afghan conflict to which no one can now turn a blind eye.  Civilian casualties have increased by 341 percent only in the first quarter of 2017.  

Troop surge and granting more powers to foreign troops in Afghanistan can have similar upshots. When their presence leads to an increase in civilian death toll as the main factor of violence in the country, how it should be trusted that such a presence will help improve the situation.  If the United States and Afghan government really seek to end the war, they should address its root causes. Instead of putting more boots in Afghan villages and remote areas, real pressure should be brought on terror supporting countries and Afghan National Defense and Security Force (ANDSF) equipped with modern weapons. It costs far less than foreign troop surge in terms of blood and treasure, and is highly effective.