The U.S. has agreed to provide humanitarian aid to a desperately poor Afghanistan on the brink of an economic disaster, while refusing to give political recognition to the country’s new Taliban rulers, the Taliban said Sunday.
The statement came at the end of the first direct talks between the former foes since the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops at the end of August.
There was no immediate comment from the U.S. on the weekend meeting.
The Taliban said the talks held in Doha, Qatar, “went well,” with Washington freeing up humanitarian aid to Afghanistan after agreeing not to link such assistance to formal recognition of the Taliban.
The United States made it clear that the talks were in no way a preamble to recognition of the Taliban, who swept into power Aug. 15 after the U.S.-allied government collapsed.
The Biden administration has just announced they will be cutting a check for $64 million in “humanitarian aid” to Afghanistan through USAID and Samantha Power.
Supposedly, this aid will go through the UN and NGOs, not through the “government”/Taliban or whoever is currently in control. Here’s Secretary of State Antony Blinken talking about it during his hearing on Zoom with Congress today.
Sorry, but I don’t trust the UN, and who knows who is in charge of some of the NGOs, so even if the money went to those folks, that it wouldn’t end up in the pockets of the Taliban, by force or by design.
Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) questioned Blinken on this earlier today, making the point that they can’t guarantee where that money is going– just like they gave aid to Pakistan while that country was helping the Taliban.
Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG) has become one of the most feared paramilitaries in Mexico over the last decade. Images of the group have become the standard depiction of the Mexican cartel writ large. Their propaganda videos often feature groups of masked men bristling with enough small arms to make them formidable against even conventional armies.
In an interview aired on Mexico’s Telemundo network in May 2019, a former CJNG soldier described his experience at a training camp and claimed that the cartel employed U.S. special operations forces (SOF) to train their recruits. According to the former sicario assassin: there were Marines, there were Navy from the United States, there were Delta Force, there was everything there.”
The cartel dropout’s account is consistent with years of reports which show that U.S. special forces training is diffusing into the service of paramilitaries in Mexico.
The Special Forces training has been funded under the Plan Mérida, which has resulted in the U.S. providing more than $1.6 billion for fighting the War on Drugs, most of it in military aid.