Afghanistan Issue: India will have to seek its role in Afghanistan on its own

India must not become a pawn in the hands of big powers amid the Afghanistan issue and the AUKUS pact.

PM Narendra Modi’s U.S. visit was a hectic affair and many things happened simultaneously. Narendra Modi had productive talks with U.S. President Joe Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris. After meeting both the leaders, Prime Minister Modi expressed the desire to widen the scope of this partnership.

The two leaders also discussed the present situation in Afghanistan. However, no mention was made about the troubles which arose between the two nations during the previous Trump administration. He also had face to face meetings with the leaders of QUAD.

Biden administration seeks to checkmate China

Biden’s policy has now become China-centric. He did say in his speech that the U.S. does not want to start another cold war with China. However, U.S. actions in the Indo Pacific region give away its intentions. It formed the QUAD of four nations –Australia, India, the US and Japan and now it formed AUKUS. The agreement of the US, Australia and the U.K to make nuclear submarines also throws up the question, will the U.S. conclude a similar agreement with India.

QUAD irrelevant after AUKUS pact

Looking at history, India has never been a part of any military alliance and with the formation of AUKUS, the relevance of QUAD has also taken a beating. QUAD is another grouping that was started with high goals but it seldom fulfilled its objectives. The quad had promised 120 crore vaccines to the world but it could provide only 8 crore vaccines. It would have been better if the QUAD had worked upon trade and other issues between the member nations. If one compares the trade between QUAD nations and China, and trade with India the picture becomes clear. India is nowhere when it comes to the volume of trade which the Quad nations have with China.

India seeking its role in the global map amid Afghanistan issue

America left Afghanistan in a hurry and the country has been taken over by the Taliban. All the investment which India had done in Afghanistan has gone to waste. Narendra Modi could have taken a bolder initiative but his speech in the UNSC does not give any solution to the Afghan quagmire.

India could learn a lot from the speech given by the Pakistan Prime Minister, Imran Khan. He honestly laid bare the games played by the big powers and how his nation was used and disposed of according to the whims and fancies of the Superpowers. The Taliban, Al Qaeda, Northern Alliance, were all born and bred in seminaries in Pakistan with money and weapons being provided by the U.S. to expel the erstwhile Soviet Union from Afghanistan during the height of the cold war.

India must be wary of the great games played by the big powers. The U.S. has never looked beyond its interests. The war against terror ended for the U.S. the day Osama Bin Laden was killed and the WTC bombing was avenged. Subsequently, an honourable exit was the only option and the U.S. grabbed the opportunity even if it meant forsaking the Afghans and literally handing over the reins to the Taliban.

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