Foreign Aid May Have Exacerbated Afghan Conflict, Experts Warn

Middle East

In the words of SIGAR Special Inspector John Sopko, the West “poured in too much money, too quickly and above all with too little control”, which allowed warlords and local bosses to become extremely rich.

The Taliban takeover that followed the ignominious US-led retreat; the ouster of the West-backed government has spurred a re-evaluation of overseas aid to Afghanistan, its extent and placement.

Several experts have argued that the lack of control over aid to Afghanistan may have actually exacerbated the situation in the war-torn country.

She cited the disintegration of the country’s traditional decision-making structure, with autonomous clans mediating and negotiating with each other, a process that began as early as the 1980s when the US supported religious mujahedin leaders with money and weapons to fight the former Soviet Union.

Iranian-Canadian researcher Saeed Parto, who has lived and worked in Afghanistan since 2006, argued that that corruption in the aid system has had an adverse effect on the developments in the country.

According to John Sopko, Special Inspector at SIGAR, the US agency that monitors aid and reconstruction projects in Afghanistan, the lack of control over the international community’s aid funds has contributed to exacerbating the long-running conflict in the country.

In the words of Sopko, the West “poured in too much money, too quickly and above all with too little…

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