- Taliban got power in Afghanistan but many challenges lie ahead
- America froze billions of dollars, so Taliban’s eyes will be on China
- Pakistan’s pockets are empty, in such a situation it cannot help the Taliban financially.
The Taliban have described China as their “most important partner”. It says that the Chinese government is ready to make the necessary investments for the “re-construction” of Afghanistan. Is it true? Is China as excited about Afghanistan as the Taliban?
China’s old ties with Afghanistan
China had tasted power in Afghanistan in the 7th century. Then the Tang dynasty established its power over the area in 659 AD by defeating the Western Turks. In this way, China’s suzerainty over Afghanistan ended in just 100 years. Much later in the 19th century, Britain and the Soviet Union tried to bring Afghanistan under their control. Then America entered and as soon as two decades passed, it had to leave Afghanistan with great trepidation. In such an environment, China’s tongue started waving again about Afghanistan.
China is dreaming about Afghanistan
Right now Afghanistan cannot be directly occupied, but Chinese President Xi Jinping is seeing many dreams under the Taliban rule. He is trying to revive the historic ‘Silk Road’ under his ambitious ‘Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)’. In this context, China’s substantial influence on the Taliban government is crucial as the BRI will connect Pakistan to the east and south, Iran to the west and Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan to the north. If this project gets off the ground, Tajikistan and China will be connected to the North-East. The plan to connect large areas of Asia has always been China’s dream.
The Great Game Part 2 in Afghanistan?
In fact, the Chinese army started building a road to connect its area with Afghanistan in the year 2009 itself. With this, BRI was launched. Four years later, Xi Jinping came to power. Actually, China wants to take economic and political advantage of its small border of 92 km with Afghanistan. Its border also meets Pakistan in Afghanistan as well as Tajikistan and Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK). Jinping intends to connect the $ 60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) with Afghanistan. He believes that this will achieve two goals at once – one will increase China’s military and strategic power and second, it will create a positive image in Muslim countries.
Who saved the Taliban from the trouble?
However, China has realized that for an external force to establish its roots in Afghanistan and maintain its influence there for a long time, it is like chewing iron gram. That is why it is trying to increase rapport with the Islamic world to ensure its role in the formation of the new Taliban government in Kabul. It joined hands with Afghanistan’s two big neighbors – Pakistan and Iran, as well as Qatar and Turkey, who play a key role in connecting the Taliban to the rest of the world. Another power that China has aligned with for this purpose is Russia, which maintains its hold on Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, which have emerged from the Soviet Union. Incidentally, being the only Muslim member country, Turkey’s role in NATO becomes very important.
America taunted Taliban’s ears
At the heart of its efforts to forge alliances with various countries is China’s suspicion of Western countries. It feels that Western countries can not only stifle the path of Taliban but can also encourage opposing forces. America has increased this fear of China by freezing billions of dollars of the Afghan government deposited with it. This move of America will weaken the economy of Afghanistan, which will make China’s test there more tough.
China is making strides
Indeed, in the event of a crisis, the eyes of the Taliban will turn towards China and the current attitude of China shows that it is not very enthusiastic about investing money in Afghanistan. Its eyes are on those countries which are not yet useful for the market of its products. He is investing only as much in welfare schemes in a country so that that country can be kept in illusion. Its full focus is on the areas where its projects are going on and to make inroads among the local people. The economic condition of Pakistan and Russia, which are part of the faction with the Taliban, is not strong enough to help Kabul. In such a situation, only Iran, Turkey and Qatar can help the Taliban. But, the problem is that these countries follow Islam in their own way, so they would like to import their own Islam in Afghanistan as well.
Farooq Abdullah on Taliban
Pakistan’s loss in the new game
Naturally, there will be intense competition between these countries to exert influence over the Taliban. In such a situation, the biggest loss will be of Pakistan, which even dropped its army in Panjshir to clear the way for the Taliban. When the Taliban need money, Pakistan will have no choice but to show its empty pockets. In such a situation, how much influence it will have on the Taliban, it can be estimated. It is not that Pakistan is not aware of its compulsion and future crises. Realizing all this, it has also opened the way to ensure its role as a messenger between China and the Taliban. On the other hand, China is also playing clever tricks. After looking at all aspects, he is trying to get global recognition to Taliban and get help from international institutions so that the big responsibility of saving Taliban from troubles does not fall on his shoulders.
…so that the Taliban does not become troubled.