Thomas West, US Special Representative for Afghanistan recently posted on X: “Traveling to Pakistan, UAE, Qatar, & Saudi Arabia December 5-15. Look forward to meeting with key partners to discuss shared security interests, refugee protection and resettlement, humanitarian needs, human rights, and economic issues”. Thomas holds one of the plum postings for the Game of Refugee Roulette being played by the US-led NATO aka the White Taliban. Imagine talking of human rights with America being one of the top offenders.
Under POTUS Joe Biden, US forces scooted from Afghanistan in August 2021. Showing red bottoms like baboons in retreat didn’t matter because the larger geostrategic aim was to spread terror, destabilise South Asia and the world at large by abandoning US $92 billion worth of weaponry and equipment to the Taliban. Some of these weapons are already being used in Jammu and Kashmir, and in Gaza. The Taliban and Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) are well armed – both are also linked to Al Qaeda.
During the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, America allowed Pakistani General Pervez Musharraf to air-evacuate a division worth of Pakistani army and Taliban (mostly Pakistan Taliban) from Kunduz and Khost in Afghanistan. The instability and violence in Afghanistan during the 20 years of US occupation sent millions of refugees into Pakistan and Iran (also some to India), whom Pakistan is now trying to push back across the border. The Doha Agreement during Donald Trump’s US presidency was a masterstroke by Pakistan but Washington is getting back at Pakistan through the TTP, although the CIA continues to share the bed with Pakistan’s ISI.
The Game of Refugee Roulette is being played by the US-led NATO aka the White Taliban. One can imagine talking of human rights with America, it being one of the top offenders
Mass deportation of Afghan refugees (men, women and children) in harsh winters with most not knowing where to go, will increase tensions between Kabul and Rawalpindi; resulting in more TTP attacks in Pakistan. Some feel this sudden decision to deport Afghans is because of Pakistan’s poor economic situation. Others say this is to slash the vote bank of Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, although migrant’s voting rights have already been taken away. But most fail to acknowledge that despite sitting in China’s lap, the Pakistani Army Chief is controlled by the US. Deportation of Afghan refugees helps the American plan to destabilise South Asia more, heightening Pashtun nationalism as being part of it.
Pakistan was used by the US not only to raise, train and arm the Mujahideen but later to indoctrinate Taliban detained in Pakistan and release them to enter Afghanistan when so ordered. It is interesting to note that Afghanistan’s Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, whose recent flashing of a Pakistan passport at Doha (Qatar) is the talk of the town, is wanted by the FBI for Kabul’s Serena Hotel killings (six people including American citizen Thor David Hesla) and attempted assassination of President Hamid Karzai. In addition, he is a designated ‘Global Terrorist’ by the US State Department with $10 million bounty on his head.
Sirajuddin Haqqani is among nearly 40,000 Afghans issued with Pakistani passports, which is being called a big scam. But could this have happened without knowledge of the CIA, or without the US ordering these passports to be issued? The US could have bumped off Sirajuddin Haqqani anytime it wanted. But the US has been sending Qatari officials to meet him in Afghanistan and now Haqqani has travelled to Doha on a Pakistani passport to meet US officials, not the Qataris. If the foul smell is not discernible, link it with the war in Gaza and US plans to set the Middle East afire.
Veteran defence analyst Brigadier V Mahalingam notes: “The US and its allies generate refugees by creating conditions in countries which they or their allies invade or subject to insurgency. Thereafter they bully the countries concerned – asking them to ensure refugee protection, feeding and medical care. The host country is then forced to resettle the refugees. The damage, destruction and bloodshed are ignored. Hasn’t this happened in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Libya, and Lebanon etc.? Aren’t we creating turmoil instead of living peacefully in the land making use of the resources that almighty has provided us?”
The instability and violence in Afghanistan during the 20 years of US occupation sent millions of refugees into Pakistan and Iran, whom Pakistan is now trying to push back across the border
The above is more than true, history being replete with such examples. Recall the European Union (EU)-Turkey Deal signed in March 2016, under which the EU is paying Euro Six billion to Turkey to improve the living conditions of refugees. Notably, this was after America used Turkey to arm and train ISIS, using US and British instructors from 2012 to 2014, and used Turkey as a conduit for Jihadis from around the world to fuel the war in Iraq-Syria.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel championed the cause of opening Europe to millions of Syrian refugees on America’s bidding though she did get another term as Chancellor in the process. France is feeling the heat now of its open door policy but all these refugees from America’s war in Iraq-Syria were not from Syria alone, which was known to European leaders but shielded from the public. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is in the same soup.
In the Game of Refugee Roulette, the US has not even spared Europe. The 75-year old CIA plan leading to the war in Ukraine, has flooded Europe with Ukrainians refugees, making European countries more dependent on America.
The US has vetoed humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza at the United Nations because of multiple reasons and will continue to instigate Israel to keep up the carnage. However, as the US prepares to enlarge the Gaza war into a regional one (fuelling it from a distance), the issue of Palestinian refugees is yet to be resolved. The initial plan was to bomb Gaza and send all Palestinians into refugee camps in the Sinai desert (never to return), which is unlikely to fully work out as planned.
The US has vetoed humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza at the United Nations because of multiple reasons and will continue to instigate Israel to keep up the carnage. Lives and bloodshed don’t really matter to the White Taliban, its Game of Refugee Roulette must continue
Egypt is being pressured to accept refugees because its US $3 billion IMF programme has gone off and Egypt needs more than US $28 billion to meet repayments in 2024 alone, with foreign debt quadrupled. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen recently offered US $10 billion to Egypt and US $5 billion to Jordan in exchange for accepting Palestinian refugees ex-Gaza, but both have rejected the offer. However, American efforts are continuing to pressure allies as well as Middle East nations to accept Palestinian refugees. This also must be one of the agendas of Thomas West visiting Pakistan, UAE, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
Meanwhile, the butchery in Gaza continues at full speed. It does not matter how many civilians, women, children, UN workers and journalists are grounded in the meat box every day. British historian William Dalrymple writes that the Netanyahu government is flattening Gaza, with unprecedented speed and dehumanised ruthlessness, at a rate of nearly 1,000 Palestinian deaths every single day. Netanyahu himself describes the process as a “thinning of the population”, language usually reserved for the culling of animals.
Nevertheless, America’s Game of Refugee Roulette must continue. Lives and bloodshed don’t really matter to the White Taliban. Only thing that scares them is nuclear power, especially with someone that would have no compunctions of using it. That is why they can only use the TTP against Pakistan but don’t have the same luxury against North Korea. US-EU sanctions have failed miserably against Russia and the dollar’s decline is destined with not only Saudi Arabia-China agreeing to use respective currencies but 150 BRICS nations ready to shun the dollar, very soon.
The author is an Indian Army veteran. Views expressed are personal.