The US Invasion of Afghanistan

The US Invasion Of Afghanistan: 


After the September 11 terrorist attacks in late 2001, the United States invaded Afghanistan, backed by close US allies who had officially launched the War on Terror. The confrontation is often alluded to as the US war in Afghanistan or the Afghan invasion of 2001. Its main intentions were to undermine al-Qaeda and deny it a safe haven in Afghanistan by toppling the Taliban. The United Kingdom was a crucial alliance with the United States, willing to offer support for military intervention from the outset of planning and preparation for the encroachment. It preceded the 1996–2001 phase of the Afghanistan Civil War between the Taliban and the Northern Alliance, despite the Taliban dominating 90 percent of the nation by 2001.

President George W. Bush insisted that the Taliban surrender Osama bin Laden and deport al-Qaeda; bin Laden had been on the FBI’s targeting list since 1998. The Taliban denied to repatriate him until they were given a “plausible explanation” of his involvement in the 9/11 attacks, and they rebuffed efforts to close terrorist bases and hand over other convicted criminals.

The US rebuffed the petition as a futile procrastination ploy, and on October 7, 2001, it initiated Operation Enduring Freedom alongside the United Kingdom. Other forces, notably Northern Alliance forces on the ground, soon joined the two. By December 17th, 2001, the US and its allies had ejected the Taliban from power and erected military bases near major towns around the region.

During the Siege of Tora Bora, the majority of al-Qaeda and Taliban members evacuated to Pakistan or withdrew to isolated rural rugged terrain. The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) officially formed Nations Security Council in December 2001 to supervise military operations in Afghanistan and equip Afghan National Security Forces.

Hamid Karzai was appointed to represent the Afghan Interim Administration at the Bonn Conference in December 2001, which became the Afghan Transitional Administration after a Loya jirga (grand assembly) in Kabul in 2002. Karzai was elected president of Afghanistan in 2004 in popular elections, and the country is now recognized as the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

NATO began engaged as an alliance in August 2003, gaining command of ISAF. The US forces in Afghanistan were divided into two groups: those under NATO command and those under direct US command. Mullah Omar, the Taliban’s leader, restructured the movement, and in 2002, it commenced an insurrection against the government and the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), which persists until now.

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Brief Reasons behind U.S. invasion of Afghanistan:

Weeks after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, U.S. President George W. Bush declared war on Afghanistan, which was then ruled by the Taliban. Mr. Bush said the Taliban regime had turned down his demand to hand over al-Qaeda leaders, including Osama bin Laden, who plotted the attacks. Inside Afghanistan, the NATO coalition troops led by the U.S. quickly dislodged the Taliban regime and established a transitional government.

Al-Qaeda’s leaders and key operatives fled to safe havens in Pakistan. The U.S. rejected an offer from the Taliban to surrender and vowed to defeat the insurgents in every corner of Afghanistan. In May 2003, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced that major military operations in the country were over.

The U.S. focus shifted to the Iraq invasion, while in Afghanistan, western powers helped build a centralized democratic system and institutions. But that neither ended the war nor stabilized the country.

Course Of War: 

As a result of the attacks, the evolution of security and protection services has changed dramatically. Air travel policies, airport security and screening, and instructions that must be followed before boarding were among the immediate modifications. Following the terrorist assault, Congress passed Aviation and Transportation Security Act, which applied to all modes of transportation, not just air travel.

In addition, the Department of Homeland Security mandated that some pilots carry a pistol on board. These pilots, also known as Federal flight deck officers, are trained to prevent terrorist attacks or other potential threats to an airline. The USA Patriot Act, which increased law enforcement’s capabilities with the goal of detecting terrorist activity, was also passed.

For example, if they were suspicious of terrorist involvement, government authorities may enter someone’s home without a search warrant and without their agreement.

Visits of President Bush: 

President Bush has visited with leaders from at least 51 countries since September 11 to help rally support for the battle against terror. A total of 136 countries have given military aid. 46 multilateral expressions of support have been received by the United States. 142 countries have ordered the assets of suspected terrorists and organizations to be frozen.

The over-flight authority has been granted to US military aircraft by 89 countries. Landing permissions for US military aircraft have been granted in 76 countries. The United States has agreed to host offensive operations in 23 countries.

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As a result, terrorists require money to carry out their heinous crimes. To start the war against terrorism, the President used his pen to freeze terrorist finances and disrupt their future money-raising and-movement pipelines. The United States and its allies in the battle on terrorism have been winning the financial war since September 11, 2001.

On September 23, President Bush started the first onslaught in the war on terrorism by issuing an Executive Order restricting the assets of persons and organizations linked to terrorism in the United States. The financial war on terror has received backing from 196 countries and jurisdictions. A total of 142 nations have issued orders freezing terrorist assets. U.S. financial institutions have blocked the assets of at least 153 known terrorists, terrorist organizations, and terrorist financial hubs, according to the FBI.

Asset Freezing: 

The United States has banned more than $33 million in terrorist organizations’ assets since September 11, 2001. Another $33 million has been withheld by other countries. The U.S. and its partners shut down al-Barakat and al-Taqwa, two significant financial networks that were used by al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden as sources of income and mechanisms to move funds, respectively, on November 7.

To combat terrorism financing, the U.S. government developed three new organizations: FTAT, Green Quest, and the Terrorist Financing Task Force (TFTF).


Barack Obama, the president of the United States, declared the Global War on Terror to be over on May 23, 2013, saying that the military and intelligence agencies would no longer fight a methodology but instead concentrate on a particular collection of networks hell-bent on destroying the United States. On December 28, 2014, the Obama administration announced that the US-led mission in Afghanistan would cease all hostilities.

However, the United States continued to play a significant role in the Afghan War, and in 2017, U.S. President Donald Trump increased the American military’s presence in Afghanistan. Operation Inherent Resolve, a global effort to weaken and eliminate the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), was started in response to the increase of ISIL.

This Article is written by Ms. Insia Nadeem, who is currently studying International Relations at the National University of Modern Languages, Islamabad. she is interested in global conflicts, International law, International organizations, and global politics. The views expressed in this article are purely the author’s views and do not reflect the policy or opinion of the Youth Diplomacy Forum. 

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