3 min read
07 Jul

It has rarely happened that the Taliban are able to hold centers and areas for longer periods of time. But, here and there, foreign media exaggerated their progress. In recent weeks, the Taliban have started their soft war by using cyberspace and every now and then they publish images and videos and inform cyberspace users, knowingly and unknowingly, and sometimes they turn their faces into supporters of the government's opponents.

Recently, with the withdrawal of American forces from Bagram airfield, the soft war of the opposition has intensified more than before. The Taliban, as the main opponents of the current system, despite the fact that they have not yet been the main winners of the hot battlefields, have used soft war to spread propaganda in order to change public opinion and have tried to present a failed, disappointing and hopeless image of the current Afghan system. In this soft war, the most infrastructure that has helped them is the virtual space where countless users visit from time to time.

In this soft war, the Taliban has obtained the modern tool of this war, which is virtual and cyber space, and has provided a platform for surfing the emotions and concerns of its users and followers. It seems unlikely that the Taliban will act alone in this soft war, and they still have the technical support of Pakistan and other supporting countries in the region.

Probably, the main goal of the Taliban in this soft war is political transformation with the aim of making the current system ineffective, creating terror among the people, spreading rumors about the fall of the regions, strengthening the spirit of people's dissatisfaction and making the situation acute.

This is despite the fact that the current system of Afghanistan, from the point of view of morale and defense, is still the standard bearer of the field and is still working hard to recapture the lost areas and has all the possibilities of intensifying the soft war against the opposition. If it is to be discussed based on the administrative divisions of the 388 districts of Afghanistan, about 338 districts are under the rule of the Afghan government and only 50 districts are in the hands of the Taliban. Statistics and surveys show that from the point of view of influence at the provincial level, the Taliban have significant influence in only 6 provinces; Meanwhile, the residents of 28 other provinces stand by the current system.

The two-fold and one-time increase in the migration rate in recent weeks and internally displaced persons indicate the intensification of the psychological and soft war, which has caused people's concern, fear and worry, and the narrative of the migrations of the civil war years of the 90s has been repeated once again.

Unfortunately, due to the lack of comprehensive financial management at the country level, the fluctuation of foreign currency and the drop in the Afghan currency are somehow dependent on the margins of the current soft war, and with the rumors of a rapid collapse and the transfer of territories, the value of the Afghan currency has decreased, and this decrease in currency value will directly affect the level of people's well-being and the trade of imported goods.

Sources and implicit cases will also have their effects in the escalation of soft war. The US embassy's concern about the widespread propaganda of the Taliban in cyberspace, the non-answering of journalists' questions about Afghanistan by US President Joe Biden, the unwanted collusion and demands of a number of foreign and domestic video media by presenting war data and information for the benefit of the opposition, the backward spirit of ordinary and traditionalist people, the distance between the people and the regime, the renewal of former commanders, the formation of popular uprisings and such things, have led to the psychological soft war in addition to the existing hot war. It covers people's information and increases the concerns of citizens.

Practically, the silence of the government's media apparatus against the advances of the Taliban in recent weeks has given the Taliban group the upper hand in the soft war, both media and propaganda. This case has greatly affected the public opinion of the Afghan people regarding the fact that with the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan, the Taliban will take over the country once again, and has made the public opinion involved in escaping this impasse. On the other hand; Taliban, by attacking technology and using media tools based on today's technology, inform the people of their achievements and progress.

Today, pure hot war is not very effective in winning; Because, a large part of the victory is provided by psychological soft war and at least by hot war and presence in the battlefields.
It has rarely happened that the Taliban are able to hold the captured centers and areas for a long time; But, here and there, foreign media exaggerated their progress. In recent weeks, the Taliban have intensified their soft war by using cyberspace and every now and then they publish images and videos, and cyberspace users knowingly and unknowingly republish the information provided and sometimes they turn into supporters of the government's opponents.

The concern raised by the people among the implicit issues in the soft war is that with the withdrawal of foreign forces and the threat of the Taliban taking over the areas, the local commanders are increasing their forces. These local commanders participate in a rally with armed men to declare their support for the Afghan security forces against the Taliban. With the revival of local armed militias to prevent the attack of the Taliban, the management of the war in Afghanistan will be dragged into an unwanted crisis. These armed groups, which are led by former commanders, are fighting in some areas along with the forces of the Afghan government; But in many cases, they defend their local and party values, beliefs and arrangements. This means that we are returning to the decade of civil war after the fall of Najibullah's government, when several warring factions fought each other and plunged Afghanistan into a devastating civil war, leaving thousands of Afghans destitute, destitute and homeless.

 The events of the civil war decade witnessed the emergence of the Taliban movement, which led to the formation of the Islamic Emirate; But the former commanders returned to power after the American B52 air attack.

Now, according to the situation and the exit from abroad and the threat of the Taliban, the local commanders have brought their formation and increase. It seems that they do not trust the government security forces to protect themselves and their local territory.

In the past weeks, the Taliban have made progress and have taken control of some of the districts of the northern provinces and in some cases, they have besieged some of the districts of the provinces. Unfortunately, in many areas, government soldiers have abandoned their posts without a fight - due to no effect on the deployment of soft war - and in some cases, have joined the Taliban without a fight.

The generalization of this part of the inefficiency of the security-defense institutions, causes it to become inactive organizations in general, and the government's propaganda apparatuses form its achievements on the battlefield and concealment from the media, which caused the Taliban group to find more space to be present in the media space. The continuation of such a situation is undoubtedly detrimental to the government and citizens.

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