Written by: Sasha Reva
Lindsey Graham, who is best known for his deal-making forays, is now making headlines for being one of the most vocal elected officials challenging the Taliban. After the Taliban invaded and took power in Kabul, South Carolina GOP senators started working behind the scenes to build support in Washington.
Their goal is to rally support for Amrullah Saleh, the Afghan opposition leader spearheading the anti-Taliban resistance based in the northeastern province of Panjshir. Graham’s goal is to legitimize Taliban opposition instead of caving into their demands like his Democrat constituents.
Graham recently said that he is “going to go all in. The Taliban is holding our people hostage. They’re a terrorist group. They’re a radical Islamic jihadist group. And if we empower them, it will hurt us all over the world.”
Saleh’s fight for survival in Afghanistan looks bleak without foreign aid. Earlier this month, Panjshir fell to the Taliban. Reports have surfaced that the Taliban is executing fighting-age men in Panjshir, including Saleh’s brother.
Graham insists that a civil war occurring in Afghanistan is inevitable. The senator recognizes that Biden has an excellent opportunity to side with pro-democracy forces to give them an upper hand as part of an eventual political settlement with the Taliban.
Graham continued saying that “if you continue to put all your eggs in the Taliban basket, you’re on the losing side over time… If you start helping different resistance groups, then you’ll actually have some leverage with the Taliban.”
Photo from: Reuters