British prime minister Gordon Brown is calling on the international community to share the burden of the military campaign in Afghanistan, according to a report in the BBC.
“We cannot allow the Taleban to be back in control of such an important country. And the work that has been done in the last six years to build a democracy in Afghanistan is an important bulwark against terrorism everywhere in the world,” Brown said, during a visit to Downing Street by Afghan president Hamid Karzai.
Six years after the US and UK invaded Afghanistan and ousted the Taliban regime that was providing sanctuary to the Al Qaeda, including its leader, Osama Bin Laden, the war in Afghanistan is far from over. The Taliban is having a revival of sorts, and the country has emerged as a major dealer of opium as drug cartels induce poor farmers, struggling for a livelihood, to take up illegal poppy cultivation. Some NATO countries have also deployed troops in the country.
The invasion of Afghanistan in October, 2001 is generally regarded as a military intervention by the US and the UK that was morally justified. After the attacks by terrorists on the US on September 11, 2001, the attack on Afghanistan was seen as a collective act of self-defense, and backed by appropriate resolutions of the UN.
Sending soldiers and ordnance to Afghanistan can only be one part of an overall program to weed out the Taliban, and extend the influence of Karzai outside Kabul. Development funds have to reach the people and generate employment and long-term means of livelihood. However, rampant corruption, local war lords, and renewed fighting with the Taliban have proven to be a major obstacle in rehabilitating the masses of the country.