The news of the printing of new afghani bank notes, the acceleration of the weekly transfer of dollars to Afghanistan, the increase in drug revenue, and the increase in the income of municipalities and customs have been accompanied by new warnings of a rising hunger crisis, to the extent that the lives of millions of people are at risk.
International organizations publish frightening statistics on the number of vulnerable populations from acute hunger. The US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has announced that an estimated 19 million people in Afghanistan are facing the threat of a food insecurity crisis. The images and news that are published daily about the lives of people in cities and villages also indicate a severe humanitarian crisis. Most families cannot have three meals of dry bread and tea on the table.
On the other side, in the Taliban administration, a small group of powerful people and their close ones are advancing. They count bundles of dollars, track customs revenue graphs, raise tax rates, and collect money from shopkeepers, peddlers, and stallholders. Some of them have millions of income and they save money from the sale of minerals, extortion, smuggling and drugs, they buy new houses, they get many wives and hold luxurious parties.
If the Taliban, although it is impossible, give up those sums, there will still be no change in the living conditions of the people. Because this group has turned off the welfare locomotive. A closed society, without movement and facing a lot of political restrictions, cannot cultivate its internal capacities, take initiative, have hope and invest. Such a society is reduced to swallowing mouths that if huge sums are injected into it, economic development and prosperity will not happen, but at best, it will postpone starvation for a few days.
Some figures among the Taliban claim in the media that freedom is not related to prosperity and cite China as a one-party and non-democratic country that has experienced unprecedented economic growth, arguing that Afghanistan can also thrive under the non-elected leadership and authoritarian system of the Taliban. They don’t know that China’s economic growth is a product of the country’s social and cultural freedoms. After World War II, the Chinese Communist Party fought for years against social restrictions that hindered the mobility of society, including cultural restrictions against women and fatalism, and now members of the Taliban are trying to take actions that some historians call extreme. The rulers of China declared human knowledge and experience as the most important means of progress and improvement of society, calling education not only a right, but also a social responsibility. Therefore, China’s economic progress and the welfare of its people are not the result of tyranny, but the product of social freedom. China’s power does not derive from fatalism, but is the fruit of empiricism and respect for schools and universities. The Chinese were also poor, suffering from internal tensions, exposed to foreign aggression, and trapped in cumbersome traditions. They were not saved from those tensions, aggressions and troubles through hostility toward women, trampling of educational institutions and the imposition of theocracy, but with the knowledge of human capacities to turn the page once and for all, even in the shadow of political tyranny, they were able to achieve one of the miracles of human history in the field of science and create an economy.
Without scientific belief and in the absence of social freedoms, it will not be possible to prosper. It has not yet been seen that a country has been saved from starvation and gained power through prayer, fatalism and anti-scientific vision. But it has been seen a lot that scientific belief and social freedoms cause abundance and economic growth even in the absence of political freedoms and lack of elected government.