In the 3rd and the last part of his first tell-all interview Ambassador Bharath Raj Muthu Kumar, India's most experienced diplomat on Afghanistan, reveals how a famous 'Bollywood baddie Ajit joke' led to huge strategic shift in India’s covert mission in Afghanistan, role of then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee and External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh's role in shaping India's mission, and the next war that the current developments would lead to.
In Part 2 of his first tell-all interview Ambassador Bharath Raj Muthu Kumar, India's most experienced diplomat on Afghanistan, reveals how Kabul and Panjshir fell, the future of the resistance movement against Taliban, and what are the strategic interests of China, Turkey, Qatar, and the US in Afghanistan.
In Part 1 of his first tell-all interview Ambassador Bharath Raj Muthu Kumar, India's most experienced diplomat on Afghanistan, reveals what's happening in the region, the old and new Taliban, and how Pakistan finds itself checkmated.
The future trajectory of Pakistan’s complex manoeuvres in Afghanistan is moving towards building structured co-located terror units with active Pakistan military support. It is now a question of timing as to when some of these units will be directed towards India and Jammu and Kashmir.
The role of Hamdullah Mohib (National Security Advisor, Afghanistan) in the collapse of the Afghan government and enabling Taliban to takeover the country will certainly be discussed in the days ahead. According to some bureaucrats who worked in the Arg, one of the reasons why the trained and well-equipped Afghan army collapsed without a fight was because Mohib was contracting surrender deals with the Taliban to help it advance.
By noon on August 15th the Afghan Government had collapsed. There was complete disarray amongst the rank and file of the Afghan defense and security forces. Vice-President Saleh and Defense Minister Bismillah Khan were already on their way to Panjshir Valley. Later Amrullah described the collapse as a “shameful surrender to Pakistan.”
Afghanistan’s Defence Minister, Bismillah Khan Mohammedi, who is now in Panjshir Valley heading the Afghan resistance forces said angrily, referring to Ghani and his team of advisors, "they tied our hands behind our backs and sold the homeland, damn the rich man and his gang." Between August 6th and August 14th Mohib strategically enabled the Taliban to rapidly advance by withdrawing the ANDSF and preventing them from actively engaging the Taliban.
Since the Syrian theatre began to quieten down in 2018, there have been reports of militants being flown to Northern Afghanistan, exactly the location from where out-of-work Mujahideen had fanned out to Kashmir, Egypt, Algeria, Syria. So, is Afghanistan headed for chaos or, as a Marxist analyst predicts: "A Quad is taking shape – Iran, China, Russia and Pakistan." If correct, has India opted for the wrong Quad?