The days after the Taliban stormed Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul were like a train wreck for Westerners so used to TV footage of Coalition soldiers on patrol, UN and international aid agencies in the streets, and Afghans rebuilding their lives after decades of vicious war.
Then came the evacuations. Kabul’s main airport became a microcosm of the Global North’s many mistakes in Afghanistan: a highly militarized response to humanitarian crisis, an utter lack of long-term planning, and no concrete exit strategy. Suicide bombers struck Kabul’s airport multiple times as beleaguered Western troops and Taliban gunmen tried to arrange evacuations for tens of thousands of Afghans. The U.S. would go on to kill a civilian NGO worker and his family in a retaliatory drone strike for the bombings.
For a week, Western viewers watched in horror as the Taliban took over Afgha
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