The Taliban They were an Islamic militant who arose Afghanistan In the first half of the 90s. This week, after the withdrawal of US troops, the Islamic movement took over more than 17 regional capitals, seizing Kabul and ending its operation, and renaming its country the “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan”. .
The internal operations and leadership of the Taliban movement, which captured the presidential palace in Kabul this Sunday, were a halo of mystery when he ruled the Asian country between 1996 and 2001.
The word “Taliban” comes from Arabic and Pashtun. The Arabic word “Taliban” means “student” and in the same language “Taliban” means “students”. When the word is translated into Pashto it means “religious students” or “seminars”.
The Taliban are a Sunni group, but they have traditionally incorporated a modern Islamic ideology. At this last stage they support themselves to ensure that the ideal of society is governed by the strict interpretation of ‘Sharia’ (or Islamic law) as to what the virtuous life of an Islamist should be like. They are pure, so they prevent their community from being enriched by Western values that are the source of the “hatred” they seek to fight.
How quickly did the Taliban seize control of Afghanistan?
The rapid and surprising advance of the Taliban in Afghanistan is not only the result of their military strength, but also of the morale and ability of the government military to influence.
Every time the rebels entered the capital, Kabul, they mixed threats and provocations in their war campaign every time they took over a city (even if some did not fire).
Why did the government army not oppose it?
The United States and Afghanistan were adamant when international troops began to withdraw in May that the Afghan military could respond to Taliban attacks.
With about 300,000 more members and more advanced equipment than the rebels, government forces were at least ready in principle.
But in reality, the military was ravaged by corruption, lack of training and depression.
In the summer, the same army was able to withstand a Taliban attack on Lashkar-e-Taiba in the south, but without US aircraft and military support, they did not last long.
Faced with a small but highly motivated and integrated army, many government soldiers, even entire units, left cities for the Taliban, abandoned or surrendered.
How did the Taliban use their low morale?
The seeds of decline began to germinate last year when Washington signed an agreement with the Taliban to fully withdraw its forces.
For the Taliban, this is the beginning of their victory after two decades of war. For many frustrated Afghans, this is betrayal and abandonment.
The insurgents expanded their offensive with killings targeting journalists and human rights activists, creating a general sense of fear.
With a propaganda campaign marking the inevitable Taliban victory. Soldiers and local officials said they received phone messages asking them to surrender or cooperate to avoid major harm.
What happened to the warlords’ anti-Taliban fighters?
Faced with the failure of government forces to stop the Taliban from advancing, many militants mobilized fighters to confront the Taliban if they dared to attack their cities.
But the fate of the warriors was also marked by a sinking hope in the survival of the Afghan government. And their cities fell without war.
In the north, Abdul Rashid Dostam and Atta Mohammed Noor fled to Uzbekistan, leaving behind military vehicles, weapons and even uniforms.
How were they able to do it so fast?
The Taliban reportedly began weaving contracts and agreed to surrender long before their May Blitzkrieg attack.
From soldiers to lower-level local officials and governors and ministers, the rebels pushed for new deals.
Images of their final march to Kabul show the effectiveness of this strategy: without bodies or street fights on the streets, the Taliban and local authorities can quietly formalize the transfer of power in the occupied territories.
U.S. reports made a month ago estimated that the Afghan government would collapse in 90 days, but only two weeks after the Taliban seized its first provincial capital.
Who are the Taliban leaders?
Here is a brief presentation of the key leaders of this radical Islamic group.
Hypatullah Akundzada, Supreme Leader
Mulla Haibatullah Akundzada was appointed Taliban leader in May 2016, just days after the death of his predecessor Mansour, who was killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan.
Prior to his appointment, little was known about Agundsada, and until then there had been a greater focus on justice and religious issues than on martial arts.
Although this scholar enjoyed great influence in the uprising, he led the justice system, and some analysts believed that his role as leader of the movement would be symbolic rather than functional.
The son of a theologian from Kandahar, the heart of Pashtun in southern Afghanistan and the cradle of the Taliban, he quickly received a pledge of allegiance from Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of the Al-Qaeda in the Gulf.
The Egyptians called him the “Emir of the Believers”, which allowed him to strengthen his credibility in the jihadi world.
Aguntzada had a subtle mission to unite the Taliban, which had been broken by the violent struggle for power after Mansour’s death and the revelation that they had hidden the death of the movement’s founder Mullah Omar for years.
The rebel group was able to keep together and continued with very little efficiency, limiting itself to sending rare annual messages during the Islamic holidays.
Mulla Bharath, Co-Founder
Abdul Gani Bharat, born in Uruzgan province (southern) and educated in Kandahar, was a co-founder of the Taliban with Mullah Omar, who died in 2013, but his death was shrouded in mystery for two years.
Like many Afghans, his life was shaped by the 1979 Soviet invasion, which he is believed to have fought alongside the Mujahideen, a fundamentalist Islamist militant, and Mullah Omar.
In 2001, after US intervention and the fall of the Taliban regime, he was said to be part of a small group of rebels who were ready to agree to a deal recognizing the Kabul administration. But this attempt failed.
Abdul Gani Bhardar was the Taliban’s military commander when he was arrested in Karachi, Pakistan in 2010. He was released in 2018, especially under pressure from Washington.
Heard and respected by various Taliban factions, he was appointed head of its political office located in Qatar.
From the Gulf, he negotiated with the Americans, which led to the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan.
Sirajuddin Haqqani, Chairman of the Haqqani Network
Sirajuddin, the son of the famous anti-Soviet jihad commander Jalaluddin Haqqani, is the number two of the Taliban and the leader of the Haqqani network.
Founded by his father, the network has been classified by Washington as a terrorist, always considered the most dangerous fighting group in Afghanistan over the past two decades before US and NATO troops.
He is accused of assassinating some senior Afghan officials, holding Westerners hostage, or holding prisoners such as Bow Berkdoll, a U.S. military officer released in 2014 in exchange for five Afghan prisoners from Guantanamo Bay.
Haqqani, known for his independence, fighting ability and fruitfulness, is believed to be responsible for Taliban operations in the mountains of eastern Afghanistan and will have a major impact on the movement’s decisions.
Mulla Yakub, heir
Yaqub, the son of Mullah Omar, is the head of the Taliban’s powerful military commission, which determines strategic directions in the war against the Afghan regime.
His descent and relationships with his father, whom he admires as the leader of the Taliban, made him a unifying figure within a broad and diverse movement.
Speculation about its exact role in the uprising continues. Some analysts believe that the appointment of the chairman of the commission in 2020 is merely a symbol.
With information from AFP.
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