The United States (US) recently left Afghanistan after two decades of strong military presence. However, it did not leave the region. A new perspective argues that post-Afghanistan, it is repeating what it did in the region in the 1990s and in the early years of the War on Terror, i.e., court Central Asian dictators in order to secure a military staging area for strikes against Islamists. The article written by Brett Wilkins is posted in anti-war.com. Here is an excerpt:
As it did while attempting to build a natural gas pipeline through the region in the 1990s and during the early years of the so-called War on Terror, the U.S. government is once again courting Central Asian dictatorships in a bid to secure a military staging area from which it could launch strikes against resurgent Islamist militants in the post-Afghan War era.
The Associated Press reports US diplomats are mounting a “charm offensive” in a bid to woo leaders of nations including Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan into agreeing to provide US military forces with bases close to the Afghan border that could be used for the type of “over-the-horizon” operations that President Joe Biden and Pentagon brass say may continue after the withdrawal, as well as temporary relocation sites for thousands of Afghan translators and other collaborators with the nearly 20-year invasion and occupation of Afghanistan.
While US forces – which are set to leave Afghanistan by the end of August – are perfectly capable of striking targets anywhere in the region from aircraft carriers or bases in the Middle East and Asia, Pentagon planners prefer the advantages of proximity that nearby staging areas would provide.
Read the full story here.