Experts forecast that yesterday’s blasts at Kabul airport which has killed at least 90 individuals, including 13 US soldiers, is a signal that Afghanistan will remain a headache for the outside world after the withdrawal of the NATO and the US troops.
The attack by IS-K, the Afghanistan branch of the Islamic State group, came when thousands of people are trying to free the country after the Taliban captured control of Kabul on August 15.
Ambassador James Jeffrey, Director of the Middle East Program and former Special Envoy to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS has stated that The ISIS attack on the airport while anticipated by US and Western intelligence ‘was a political signal’ by the ISIS-Khorasan branch that it unlike the Taliban will continue attacking American and Western targets.
“ This is a fundamental challenge to Taliban control and underscores the continued threat from Afghanistan after the American withdrawal,” he said.
Michael Kugelman, Deputy Director of the Asia Program says that the blasts put Washington ‘in a terrible policy bind’ - Keep doing evacuations and risk more terror attacks at the airport that kill more people, or stop evacuations and keep people desperate to leave from leaving.
“Like so many other US policy decisions about Afghanistan, there are no good options. The deaths of US servicemen, the first since early last year, underscore the continued risks for American troops in Afghanistan. It’s an important reminder, given the criticism the Biden administration has taken from US commentators for its decision to withdraw,” Kugelman states.
The NATO and the US troops withdrew from the country after almost a 18-year-presence there, following a deal between the US under Donald Trump and the Taliban back in 2020.