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Congress earmarked over $3 billion for the Afghan military prior to its collapse in August. Do we have similar determination to help the Afghan people as millions face starvation this winter?
Since the last U.S. soldier departed Kabul, U.S.-Afghanistan relations have been relegated to backdoor diplomacy in order to avoid recognizing the Taliban. The $474 million the United States has pledged to distribute in Afghanistan thus far pales in comparison to what is needed to prevent mass famine, and the trillions of dollars America spent on war in Afghanistan.
Four decades of war made Afghanistan’s economy aid dependent, with grants financing approximately 75 percent of public spending. Since the Taliban takeover, banks are running out of cash, and even Afghans with savings are unable to access their funds, as $9.5 billion in Afghan assets has been frozen by global powers attempting to keep cash away from the Taliban government.
Join international humanitarian diplomat and Secretary General of Norwegian Refugee Council, Jan Egeland, International Crisis Group Asia Program Director and former diplomat Laurel Miller, and Shaharzad Akbar, the Chairperson of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, for a panel that explores how the United States can engage with the Taliban and most importantly the Afghan people to prevent a humanitarian nightmare from unfolding this winter. The Quincy Institute’s Adam Weinstein will moderate.