According to Russian Ambassador to Afghanistan Dmitry Zhirnov, Western journalists are misportraying the situation since Russia’s view is that there’s no reason to panic. ISIS isn’t rising, Kabul is mostly calm, and civilians are safe.
Russia has surprisingly come to have more pragmatic ties with the Taliban than any other country apart from Pakistan as a result of its leadership’s successful balancing act during the Afghan War. Although Moscow still officially regards the group as terrorists, this hasn’t stopped it from hosting them in the Russian capital and becoming the most influential player in that country’s peace process, once again behind Pakistan. In fact, it clearly seems as though the Eurasian Great Power’s pragmatic stance towards the Taliban is a direct consequence of the rapid Russian-Pakistani rapprochement in recent years, which has led to geostrategically game-changing outcomes such as this one as well as the exciting opportunity to integrate Central & South Asia.
The Kremlin hasn’t wasted a second in confidently debunking Western fearmongering about the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan. Special Presidential Envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov said on Monday that “the situation is perfectly calm” in Kabul. He also stated that his country has no concerns about a Taliban-led Afghanistan resembling ISIS, even going on to talk about how he “saw in reality the Taliban fighting ISIS (outlawed in Russia) and fighting it viciously unlike the Americans and the whole of NATO, including the Afghan leadership that fled, who did not counter ISIS and only pandered to it. Representatives of the highest Taliban leadership were telling me that they only have this to say to ISIS: there will be no captives.”
Russian Ambassador to Afghanistan Dmitry Zhirnov also counteracted the West’s hyperbolic claims of an imminent humanitarian crisis by clarifying that the report of “A stampede at the airport does not mean that all of the Afghan people are trying to flee.” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova still criticized the US for its treatment of those refugees, however, pointing out how hypocritical it was for the American government not to talk about the human rights violations at the Kabul airport while obsessing over comparatively more minor alleged ones elsewhere. According to Zhirnov, Western journalists are misportraying the situation since Russia’s view is that there’s no reason to panic. ISIS isn’t rising, Kabul is mostly calm, and civilians are safe.
Kabulov also revealed that diplomats are safe too. He said that the Russian Embassy in Kabul was now under the Taliban’s protection, showing just how close those two have become. Ambassador Dmitry Zhirnov added that the group promised him that “no one will harm a hair on the heads of Russian diplomats”. Even so, Kabulov confirmed that “We are not in a rush as far as recognition is concerned. We will wait and watch how the regime will behave”, which hints that Moscow might be concerned about either the Taliban’s ability to consolidate power. Moving along, Kabulov also debunked the most popular conspiracy theory to pop up in over the past day, namely that the Taliban are US proxies.
This was spread by some in the Alt-Media Community presumably in response to their inability to comprehend how the Taliban could so quickly return to power. Kabulov harshly criticized the speculation that this happened as a result of a secret deal with the US, saying that “I think that those behind such inventions are trying to justify Washington’s failure in Afghanistan and paint it as a pre-planned move. I think it is absolutely groundless.” The former Ghani Government, not the Taliban, was the US’ real proxy in Afghanistan. This should have been obvious to all objective observers, especially after a spokesman from the Russian Embassy in Kabul revealed that Ghani fled with cars full of cash, most of which he transported out of the country by helicopter while leaving some behind.
Taken together, it’s clear that Russia has an altogether different interpretation of everything that’s happening in Afghanistan than the West does. Far from being on the verge of an historically unprecedented crisis like the West and even many Alt-Media figures who should know better make it seem, the situation is surprisingly stable. ISIS isn’t rising, minorities and women aren’t being slaughtered in the streets, and Kabul isn’t in chaos. It’s of course up to each person to decide which side they believe, but it’s difficult to imagine that Russia is lying for some inexplicable reason while the West is finally telling the truth for once. Rather, it’s much more likely that Russia’s portrayal of events is the most accurate and that it just debunked the West’s fearmongering about Afghanistan.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Voice of East.