In a lightning offensive, the Taliban swallowed dozens of cities in a matter of days, and the Afghanistan government collapsed on August 15. In the five years they ruled until being toppled by invading US-led forces in 2001, the Islamist terrorist group Taliban earned a reputation for brutality and enforcement of a harsh brand of Islamic justice. Now, with the militant group returning to power, almost two decades after they were ousted by the United States, fear has gripped the city, with tens of thousands of people trying to escape.
At a time as sensitive as this, the ultra-leftist website The Wire has gone on to provide a platform to Ghazala Wahab, the executive editor of FORCE, who gives legitimacy to Taliban, claiming that they are not terrorists but very much the citizens of Afghanistan.
The journalist, who as per her profile on Linked.in, specialises in writing on terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir, left-wing extremism and religious extremism, tells The Wire’s senior editor Arfa Khanum at around 14 minutes into the interview that the Talibanis are ‘legitimate stakeholders’ as they are natives of Afghanistan, so they should be termed as insurgents and not terrorists.
Ghazala Wahab is clearly seen legitimising the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan as she says that the Talibanis are not outsiders but residents of Afghanistan. “They are Pashtun Afghanis, the majority population of Afghanistan. This is not the first time that they have come to Afghanistan, they have been residents of Afghanistan. Even if they have lived in refugee camps or studied in the madarsas in Pakistan, they are still Afghanis. So, wanting to uproot them from their native place merely because they are brutal or have a primitive mindset is not only ‘unreasonable’ but also ‘impossible’,” opined the journalist.
Ghazala Wahab seems so casual when she claims that the Taliban are insurgents, not terrorists and that the Taliban, like any other insurgent group, used terrorism before starting the insurgency. “This is common and has been the case in many places across the world”, said the journalist.
Ghazala Wahab does not stop here but goes on to explain why these ‘insurgents’ had to resort to terrorism. Almost trying to absolve the Taliban militants from the violence and atrocities it has heaped on the innocent citizens of Afghanistan, Wahab said that like is the case of others, the Taliban must have also had to resort to terrorism to attract attention and make its presence felt.
“So merely because they are spreading terrorism or oppressing women one says that they (Talibanis) do not have a stake there (Afghanistan) is sheer stupidity”, claims the journalist in conversation with The Wire’s senior editor Arfa Khanum.
It is appalling that though the journalist throughout the interview was soft condoning Taliban, giving it legitimacy by not acknowledging their barbaric behaviour towards religious minorities and women, the Wire’s senior editor Arfa Khanum patiently went on to listen to her.
This, however, is not surprising, considering Arfa Khanum herself had lost her shit when allegedly the ‘Right Wing’ was mocking and trolling Indian Muslims because Taliban has taken over Kabul. She then went on to shame the ‘Sanghis’.
The truth is that a significant section on Twitter are actually not condemning the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban. While some are silently supporting, others are cheering and hoping to replicate the same in India for ‘attaining azaadi’.