Afghan President Under Siege as Violence, Joblessness Persists

Afghan President Under Siege as Violence, Joblessness Persists by Pamela Constable - Washington Post

An ominous rumble of discontent is sweeping Afghanistan, driven by a mixture of anxiety, anger, frustration and political opportunism. 

In the past two months, a mélange of new opposition groups has emerged, some with noble-sounding names and reformist agendas, led by an improbable assortment of tribal leaders, ethnic militia bosses, disaffected public appointees and young professionals. Even an old communist general has joined the fray with a new, pointedly non-leftist party called “The Homeland Movement.”

Their demands include individual grievances, and several of the more controversial leaders have grabbed most of the attention. But their broader message is remarkably similar: the government of President Ashraf Ghani has failed to protect the public and provide jobs. The president has overreached his executive powers and excluded diverse points of view. He must act now, produce meaningful reforms and legitimize his fractured, teetering government — or else. 

The object of this barrage is a cerebral, single-minded man of 68 who spends 18-hour days reading policy reports, holding team meetings, addressing conferences and huddling with aides, seemingly determined to power through the latest crisis as his troubled government nears three years in office. Ghani’s aides insist the real impetus behind much of the opposition is a mix of anxiety among traditional leaders who are losing power in a modernizing state, and a broader opposition to reform from those who have long benefited from systemic public corruption…

Read on.

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"b. Afghanistan being -- as per the requirement of the Afghans themselves -- organized, ordered and oriented so as to better provide for the -- diverse -- wants, needs and desires of the Afghan people?"

Delivered through tribal and representative governance in semi-autonomous regions. The real international effort should be on overseeing the provision of resources by the Kabul government to the Afghan people.

Endstate: to be left alone with the necessary resources to lead a prosperous and pious life without foreign occupation and threat of ethnic cleansing.

From our article above:

BEGIN QUOTE

Meanwhile, the aides said, the president is determined to stay focused on the financial, justice and administrative reform agenda that has brought him kudos from Afghanistan’s foreign backers — which pay for 70 percent of the national budget — and from groups such as the International Monetary Fund.

But most Afghans have seen little benefit from the reforms. Unemployment is close to 40 percent, and street corners are crammed with day laborers. High-profile efforts to prosecute corrupt officials have proceeded slowly, and powerful figures with murky fortunes have built mansions and shopping malls. Street crime and insurgency have infected daily life with the constant fear of violence; last year, more than 11,000 civilians were killed or injured in war-related incidents.

END QUOTE

Thus, should we say that the clear problem here lies in:

a. Afghanistan being -- as per the requirement of the U.S./the West -- organized, ordered and oriented so as to better provide for the -- singular -- wants, needs and desires of Afghanistan's foreign backers, and for such groups as the International Monetary Fund? This, rather than

b. Afghanistan being -- as per the requirement of the Afghans themselves -- organized, ordered and oriented so as to better provide for the -- diverse -- wants, needs and desires of the Afghan people?

(The Afghan people, thus, now coming to see President Ashraf Ghani as -- not really being their President/someone who responds and reports to them -- but, rather, more of a U.S./Western official and, thus, someone that responds/reports to U.S./the West? Herein, we should note that President Ghani was formally a development specialist who, for a time, worked for the World Bank.)