Seven years and many billions of euros after the US-led invasion of Afghanistan, even the UN has admitted the war on terrorism may never be won. Despite the presence of some 70,000 foreign troops, life is more dangerous than ever and the US said another 13 billion euros is needed to build up the Afghan army. On Sunday, Britain’s top military commander in Afghanistan said that the war there could not be won.
One of the few areas where there have been improvements is the commercial sector. One man said: “There have been lots of changes in Afghanistan compared to seven years ago. Today every single Afghan has access to a mobile phone. “Seven years ago if you wanted to make a call you had to go to Pakistan. Now the situation is much better, thank God, and there is a lot more development.”
But jobs remain scarce and costs have risen substantially over recent years. One unemployed man said: “During the seven years that foreign troops have been in our country they have brought misery. Our economy has become weaker and weaker. There are no jobs; people are suffering day after day. Look at us, we wait here from morning til evening and still don’t find any work.”
Thousands of families are now living in tented cities outside Kabul, having fled their homes in the south and the endless fighting.