While peace is the only priority for the war-weary Afghan people, and that the experience of the recent decade and a half proved that political dialogue is the only way to accomplish it, the Afghan government upheld a strategy which will only protracts the war. In lieu of listening to their people, leaders of the National Unity Government (NUG), without any reservation, accepted the new US strategy that is solely intended to protect American interests. Afghan peace efforts seem to have been stalled, or at least people are not aware of if there are any since the new strategy has been unveiled.
A new survey has found out that 90 percent of Afghans believe that Afghanistan can only achieve peace through intra-Afghan dialogue. According to the opinion poll conducted by the Afghanistan Center for Strategic and Regional Studies with about 2,000 respondents from all walks of life, 67 percent of the respondents have even accused the government of lacking the political will for peace.
When nearly all Afghans believe that political negotiation is the only option to put an end to the Afghan conflict, what are the reasons government leaders threaten to eliminate the militants, especially when the Taliban control ever more territory since their fall, and when the government’s rule is not only shrinking day by day, but it also has failed to secure the lives and properties of people in major cities, including capital Kabul. Despite their failure to contain the war, the government leaders don’t give priority to peace talks, a position which will only result in the deterioration of the situation.
Dialogue is the only solution of wars. Therefore, the sooner it is adopted, the earlier the tragedy will be stopped, and people extricated from the scourge of war. While it is right that the suppression of the militants will give an upper hand to the government in peace talks, it is only possible when the government is able to turn the tide in the war against the insurgency, not now which is otherwise. Moreover, even if the use of force takes Afghanistan to peace, there will definitely be a need for peace talks and political dialogue to achieve stability.