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What is Taliban? Who are the Taliban and what do they want?

With the withdrawal of American troops, Afghanistan is once again burning in the fire of war. Taliban fighters have captured most of Afghanistan and Afghan troops are fighting to defend major cities such as Kabul-Kandahar. In such a situation, the world wants to know who are these Taliban people and why are they so afraid?

History hardly turns the pages of time in the fate of any country in such a strange way as the mountainous stony land of Afghanistan has seen. Afghanistan, which was once moving towards modernity under the regime of Zahir Shah, backed by Russia, has also seen the medieval rule of the Taliban in the 1990s. After this, after the 9/11 attacks, American and NATO countries liberated from Taliban rule, and in twenty years, the country was learning to stand on its feet that the Taliban raised its head again. Then the era of medieval edicts like Sharia law, punishment for whipping, street slaughter and growing beard, listening to music, restrictions on women has returned. Most of the country is again under the control of Taliban and people are forced to leave their homes again and again out of fear and flee to neighboring countries.

In 2001, America entered Afghanistan in search of Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks and ended the power of the Taliban. After the arrival of the Biden administration, American troops decided to leave Afghanistan. With this, the Taliban’s attacks intensified and today the Taliban is claiming to have captured 85 percent of the country’s areas. The areas bordering Pakistan and Iran are now occupied by the Taliban and the war of occupation of Kandahar is intensifying. In many areas, the Taliban have taken over security posts and have started collecting taxes in many areas. Pictures of people leaving their homes from these areas are making international headlines today. The world wants to know who are these Taliban people and why are they so afraid?

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What is Taliban? what is its power ?

The Taliban emerged in northern Pakistan in the early 1990s following the withdrawal of Russian troops from Afghanistan. Taliban in Pashto language means students, especially students who are inspired by radical Islamic religious teachings. It is said that the fundamentalist Sunni Islamic scholars had established their foundation in Pakistan with the help of religious institutions. The Devvandi ideology has a complete influence on the Taliban. Financial aid coming from Saudi Arabia was considered responsible for raising the Taliban. Initially, the Taliban declared that their aim was to eliminate foreign rule from Islamic areas, establish Sharia law and an Islamic state. Initially, the people fed up with the tyranny of the feudal lords, the corruption of the officials saw the Messiah in the Taliban and in many areas they were welcomed by the tribal people, but later fanaticism also ended this popularity of the Taliban, but by then the Taliban had become so powerful. It was that people’s hope of getting rid of him was over.

In the early stages, American support was also considered behind the Taliban to end Russian influence in Afghanistan, but the 9/11 attacks made America feel the heat of radical ideology and it itself went to war against it. But after big cities like Kabul-Kandahar, American and Allied forces have not been successful even in the last 20 years in eliminating the Taliban from the mountainous and tribal areas. Especially in the areas adjacent to Pakistan, Pakistani support to the Taliban kept alive and today after the withdrawal of American troops, the Taliban has again emerged as a name of fear by raising its head.

Who is the leader of Taliban?

Maulvi Hibtullah Akhunzada has been the chief of the Taliban since the death of Mullah Omar first and then Mullah Mukhtar Mansour in 2016 in a US drone strike. He is the supreme commander of the Taliban’s political, religious and military affairs. Hibtollah Akhunzada ran a seminary in Kandahar and issued fatwas in favor of the Taliban’s war actions. He was also the head of the courts during the Taliban rule in Afghanistan before 2001. During that period, the Taliban also started participating in talks for a political solution from Doha to many foreign locations.

How did the Taliban become stronger after 20 years?

Beginning in 2001, the Taliban was pushed only to the mountainous areas in the actions of American and Allied forces, but after the attack on the NATO base in 2012, the rise of the Taliban started again. In 2015, the Taliban captured the strategically important area of ‚Äč‚ÄčKunduz and signaled a return. This was a time when the demand for the withdrawal of forces in America was gaining momentum. America’s interest in Afghanistan waned and the Taliban grew stronger. With this, with the help of Pakistani terrorist organizations, Pakistan Army and ISI intelligence, the Taliban strengthened their base in the areas adjacent to the Pakistan border. As part of its efforts to return from America, in 2020, the US started peace talks with the Taliban and several rounds of talks were also held in Doha. On the one hand, the Taliban took the path of direct talks, and on the other hand, instead of attacking big cities and military bases, started working on the strategy of capturing small areas. And today its result is in front of everyone.

Which areas have the Taliban captured?

In April 2021, when US President Biden announced a complete withdrawal of American troops by September, the Taliban got the ground clear and intensified the attacks. The Afghan troops retreated and the Taliban’s occupation increased. Today the Taliban claim that they have control of 85 percent of Afghanistan.

The Taliban has captured many check posts in Kandahar, Afghanistan’s second largest city after Kabul. The battle for the capture of the city is intensifying. All the check posts in the areas adjacent to Pakistan are under Taliban control. In the midst of the Taliban attack on the Tajikistan border, Afghan soldiers had to flee and take refuge in Tajikistan.

The same fear among the common people of Afghanistan!

To know why there is fear among the people about the Taliban, which returned in effect after 20 years, one has to go back 23 years. In 1998, when the Taliban took control of the Afghan capital, Kabul, and started ruling the country, many decrees were issued. Sharia law was implemented all over the country and people who did not obey were publicly punished. In cases related to murder and sexual offenses, the accused started being killed on the street. Scenes like cutting off body parts of people caught on charges of stealing, whipping people became common on the streets. It was made mandatory for men to keep long beards and for women to wear burqa and go out with full body cover. The windows of the houses were painted black. TV, music and movies were banned. Girls above 10 years of age were banned from going to school. The Taliban also showed religious fanaticism to the world by destroying the historic Buddha statue in Bamiyan. There were three countries that recognized this regime of Taliban – Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and UAE.

What is the military strength of Afghan and Taliban?

How strong is the Taliban that it is overwhelming the Afghan army? The First Vice President of Afghanistan says- ‘The Taliban will be eliminated soon. They have close to 80 thousand fighters and the Afghan army has between 5 and 6 lakh soldiers. Apart from this, Afghanistan has an air force which will be heavy on the Taliban. However, despite this claim, there are many such facts which are proving the Taliban strong at the ground level. The manpower source of the Taliban is the tribes and their fighters settled in the tribal areas. Apart from this, orthodox religious institutions, madrasas are also supporting his idea. But above all, the secret help of Pakistani Army and ISI is proving helpful for Taliban. US intelligence assessments also clarify the ground situation, which states that within 6 months of the withdrawal of US troops, the dominance of the Afghan government will end and the rule of the Taliban may come.

What is the role of America, Russia, China, Pakistan and India?

The international stand on Afghanistan is also confused. America and the Allied forces have returned and these countries are now only making rhetoric on a political solution to the Afghan problem. Russia is not very clear about the Taliban. While Russia is happy with the rise of the Taliban to end US dominance, it also sees the Taliban as a threat to countries with Russian influence like neighboring Tajikistan-Uzbekistan and is preparing to conduct military exercises in the area soon. . Pakistan is behind the Taliban and in such a situation, China also sees the possibility of increasing influence in Afghanistan under the Taliban rule.

What is Taliban? Who are the Taliban and what do they want?

The situation in India is very sensitive in such a situation. India has invested billions of dollars in the development of Afghanistan in the last 20 years. India has spent a lot on many big projects including schools, hospitals, electricity-gas plants. With the coming of the Taliban regime, all this will be in danger. Afghanistan is expecting help from India. But India will not take the risk of directly interfering there in the current situation. In such a situation, the coming months will be very important in view of the future of Afghanistan and the situation in the entire region of South and Central Asia.

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