The success of the American peace deal in Afghanistan is
closely tied to Trump’s win in the U.S. presidential elections.
The picture is grim and the road ahead is bumpy.
For many years, the central debate was regarding the best way to end the war in Afghanistan. There was no question that the American people were tired of it and wanted the war to come to an end. The American war in Afghanistan has been its longest military engagement in history. Now the real worry is not about how to end it but rather does anyone even care?
President Trump has been working towards ending this war. His aim has been to end America’s longest war so as to tout his deal-making credentials for the coming presidential election. Zalmay Khalilzad, the US special diplomat, has been in charge of working out the nitty gritty of the peace deal between the Taliban and the United States. The peace deal was signed this year right before the coronavirus invaded the newsrooms worldwide and captured people’s imagination.
Nobody could have seen this coming. Just as one of the symptoms of the coronavirus is the loss of the sense of taste and smell, the virus is doing the same to the peace deal. It is absolutely a great achievement to end America’s longest war, a goal that eluded other presidents before Trump. However, the coronavirus consuming the daily news cycle and affecting people’s lives in unforeseen ways has rendered the peace deal between the United States and the Taliban tasteless. Americans are not paying attention to what is happening in Afghanistan or how soon the American troops would come home from that battlefield. They are more worried about the more than a 100 thousand corona deaths and the grim predictions of another 100 thousand deaths before the presidential election.
The year 2020 has been quite an eventful year in many ways. It started with calls for Trump’s impeachment, followed by the peace deal between the United States and the Taliban. Then came the virus and it has not left us yet. Massive changes in lifestyles and work became the norm within days. Worshipping, shopping, working, parenting, everything changed and the shift was extremely sudden. Then came the death of a black man named George Floyd. He was killed when a white police officer pressed his knee over his neck. He pressed so hard despite the repeated pleas from George Floyd, that he ended up killing him.