Monday (September 13th): Afghanistan Update

Zabiullah Mujahid
Zabiullah Mujahid

Name? Zabiullah Mujahid

Westphalian identity? Afghan

Age? 43

Why is he in the news? Since the Taliban have taken over Afghanistan, you have likely seen Zabiullah Mujahid’s face everywhere. He spoke to the world when the Taliban captured Kabul, when a new government was formed, and when the final rebellious region, the Panjshir region, was defeated. 

Why do we care? Well, Mujahid has been a key component in the Taliban’s new and moderate way of communication. His statements apparently were calming enough for the NATO allies to exit Afghanistan and leave it to Mujahid’s promises. We are gone on vacation for one month and suddenly the Taliban have taken complete control of Afghanistan?

Why should you care? The longest and most expensive US war is finally over, and has it brought much change? Nothing lasting! But for millions of Afghan women who have gotten used to certain lifestyles in the past 20 years, their lives are about to change drastically! So in theory you should care 10/10…But let’s be honest, now that the evacuation is over and there are no more dramatic images on TV, interest will fade soon. #Yemen

Who else cares? Former US President Donald Trump. A few days ago, Trump called leaving Afghanistan the worst foreign policy decision in the history of the US, too bad it was his…Now, Trump is saying the US should either go in with “unequivocal military force and get it, or at least bomb the hell out of it”. 

Any further comments? Did you know that we cannot be 100% sure whether Zabiullah Mujahid is actually Zabiullah Mujahid? US intelligence describes Mujahid as a persona and not a person. This persona has been in touch with journalists for years but it was never clear who was actually behind it. The current version of him claims to have survived multiple airstrikes and capturing attempts which led to embarrassed intelligence units making up the story of the Mujahid persona.

Joshua Dario Hasenstab

General Coordinator