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Afghan Financial Collapse

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  • Afghan Financial Collapse

    Regular readers of this column have heard me preach endlessly (it sometimes must seem to you) about corruption. It is a poison which cripples our efforts in Afghanistan, undoes the progress made by our people on the ground, and renders their sacrifice a cynical exercise. The idea of American men and women giving everything they have for a better life for Afghans, and having the payoff turned into pallets of cash smuggled to Dubai, really leaves a sour taste in my mouth.

    There is the possibility that the entire corrupt house of cards in Afghanistan may be on the brink of tumbling down. Last week it nearly did when Afghans began a run on Kabul Bank, the largest private bank in Afghanistan and the bank through which a substantial part of the governments funds pass. Army and security force payrolls, for example, are funneled through the bank. The run stripped it of over half of its liquid reserves and prompted the Afghan central bank to step in, force the resignation of several senior officers, and “stabilize” the situation.

    For now.

    Here is a link to Juan Cole’s column on the subject. Bear in mind that Cole has been a consistent supporter of the war in Afghanistan, calling it, “the right war at the right time.” He offers a good look at the financial structure of Afghanistan, and a healthy dose of righteous anger. Sometimes righteous anger is the only response which makes any sense.


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