More than a decade ago - without consultation, without any debate - the United States launched the war against Afghanistan. The whole world was by its side, as soldiers rolled into the country in an act of self-defence after the attacks of 9/11. Today, the troops of the coalition are gradually packing up.
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After years of violence and bloodshed, the lives of more than 3,000 soldiers have been lost, and the US leaves behind a country on the brink of civil war.
They did not participate in 9/11. Not a single Afghan, not a single Taliban, was in that terrorist act.
The official rhetoric has not stood up to the stark reality on the ground: Osama bin Laden was found and killed elsewhere - in neighbouring Pakistan; al-Qaeda and the Taliban may have been an ideological combination conveniently cooked up by the hawks in Washington; and the fate of Afghan women was just used as an excuse to sell the war to a Western public.
In this film, all parties to the conflict - members of the US secret service, commanders of the US armed forces, Taliban officials, Afghan warlords and tribal leaders, UN negotiators, Pakistani leaders and secret service, and NGO officials - give their view, unravelling the tangled web of a war that had no other motive than America’s thirst for revenge.
Western democracies promised Afghanistan a better future. But they will leave the country in a state of widespread corruption and disillusion, with thousands of lives lost, and the Taliban more powerful than ever.
Afghanistan, which was once the ideal target, has today become a volcano.
The October 2004 presidential election was the first ever Afghan election with universal suffrage, and the people respected the process, flocking in great numbers to vote.
In this country of clans and tribes, formerly ruled by a king, Hamid Karzai was one man who instilled some hope.
He was elected as the new president but behind him were the same tribal leaders, chiefs and warlords. And even though some of them did not hold any official positions in the government, yet they held all the power.
Corruption worsened in the country and US' attention was directed elsewhere - Iraq - which then became their top priority. It was their new just war, so the Americans abandoned Afghanistan to its chiefs and their excesses.
This film was directed by Alberto Marquardt - written by Alberto Marquardt and Eric De Lavarenne
Source: Al Jazeera