By: Kayhan Int’l Staff Writer
American-occupied Afghanistan was the focus of the "Heart of Asia” foreign ministerial meeting of 15 regional countries on Monday December 9 in Istanbul, Turkey, where participants supported the political process to achieve peace from 18 years of lawlessness unleashed by the US military, with Iran’s top diplomat emphasizing that solution to the crisis is possible only through inter-Afghan talks, including the Taliban, without any country dictating terms and conditions.
Although Dr. Mohammad Javad Zarif did not name Washington and hinted that rank outsiders remote from the region have no right to impose their views, it was clear to the attendees that the main hurdle to peace, stability, and rehabilitation of Afghanistan is Uncle Sam.
His words that Iran, whether in discussions with the government in Kabul or with the Taliban, whose delegation recently visited Tehran, "encourages all Afghans to engage with each other for a peaceful solution”, were indicative that the culprit was the US – a fact that is being reluctantly admitted by the American press after all these years lies, deceit and destruction.
Last Monday, the Washington Post likened the stalemate in Afghanistan with the US debacle in Vietnam, some half-a-century ago, saying: "A confidential trove of government documents reveals that senior US officials failed to tell the truth about the Afghan war throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable.”
In view of these realities, and brushing aside Donald Trump’s theatrical stealth visit to the Bagram airbase late last November like a thief or a terrified terrorist fearful of losing his life, it is high time the Afghan people realized that no president in the White House can be relied upon to end the crisis plaguing their occupied homeland.
It means the Afghan Muslim people, irrespective of the schools of Islamic jurisprudence they follow, or their political leanings, their ethnicity (Pakhhtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek), and the languages they speak (Persian, Pashto) should come on the single platform of national unity to determine the future of their country, which the Yankees have systematically destroyed and recently unleashed the macabrely murderous Daesh terrorists against both the Shi’as and Sunnis.
Iran, which shares history, culture, language and religion, with Afghanistan, will never hesitate to help the Afghan people, despite the averse propaganda of the western media and western politicians against the Islamic Republic.
The communique of the Istanbul meeting seemed to agree with this perspective when it declared: "We commend countries in the region and beyond for their hospitality and all kinds of support in hosting millions of Afghan refugees for four decades. We acknowledge the role of regional and neighbouring countries in particular Iran and Pakistan in hosting Afghan refugees for such a long time and call for creating conducive conditions in Afghanistan for voluntary, safe dignified and sustainable return of the refugees to their homeland.”
Jointly inaugurated by the speeches of the Turkish and Afghan presidents, Rajab Tayyeb Erdoghan and Ashraf Ghani, the "Heart of Asia – Istanbul Process” set up in 2011 to resolve the chronic crisis of Afghanistan, is based on 3 pillars, namely: Political Consultation, Confidence Building Measures, and cooperation with regional organizations.
Iran, Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Tajikistan were represented by their foreign ministers, while India sent its minister of state for external relations to the conference, where senior officials from the other member states were present –Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, the Republic of Azerbaijan, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.
Surprisingly, Qatar, whose capital Doha has the regional office of the Taliban and which hosts the on-and-off talks between this militia and the US occupiers, is not a member of the "Heart of Asia”.
More astonishing is the observer status granted to the occupying power US, to rank outsider the European Union (EU), and above all to Britain, the former colonial power responsible for three destructive wars on the Afghan people beginning from the late 19th century to the early 20th century.
Could the involvement of such parties benefit Afghanistan and the Afghan people?
The answer is obvious. It doesn’t. At any rate, it is up to the Afghan people to distinguish between friend and foe.
As for the Islamic Republic of Iran, it will always stand beside Afghanistan and the Afghan people.