Afghanistan Audio Analysis: The Bombing of the Afghan Parliament

PHOTO: The scene inside the Afghan Parliament after Monday’s bombing

On Monday, I spoke with Monocle 24’s The Briefing to assess the significance of the Taliban’s suicide bombing and gun attacks on the Afghan Parliament.

What do the attacks say about the state of the fight against the Taliban, more than 13 years after they were overthrown by US-organized operations? And what do they say about the challenge of legitimacy facing the Kabul Government?

Listen from 5:15:

No matter how well-training a security force is, no matter how much effort you expend, chances are that dedicated bombers will get through at some point. So simply saying, “There has been a bombing, therefore security forces have failed” is simplistic.

The broader question is “How effective will forces be in trying to restore security not only in Kabul but in other parts of Afghanistan?” That question of security is tied into a wider issue which is one of political legitimacy. Unless you have a government which commands the support of the majority of the Afghan people, then you are always going to have this issue of security. And, until the last few months, we have not even had a government in place which has even been attempting to gather that legitimacy.

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Scott Lucas is Professor of International Politics at the University of Birmingham and editor-in-chief of EA WorldView. He is a specialist in US and British foreign policy and international relations, especially the Middle East and Iran. Formerly he worked as a journalist in the US, writing for newspapers including the Guardian and The Independent and was an essayist for The New Statesman before he founded EA WorldView in November 2008.


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