Two Years Since Return to Power: Afghan Taliban Celebrates Unrecognized Anniversary

Two Years Since Return to Power: Afghan Taliban Celebrates Unrecognized Anniversary

The Afghan Taliban marked the two year anniversary of its return to power with fervent celebrations that included military parades and public displays of the group's strength. While the Taliban's victory over Western forces in 2021 is not formally recognized by any country, the group continues to assert its authority over the nation and its aspirations of establishing an "Islamic system."

On this significant day, the city of Kabul witnessed military parades and gatherings throughout the capital. The Taliban's spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, extended his congratulations to the Afghan nation for what their victory. Mujahid spoke passionately about the Taliban's vision for Afghanistan's future.

Chants of "Death to the Europeans, death to the Westerners, long live the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, death to the Americans" echoed in some areas, underscoring the continued anti-Western sentiment that has long fueled the group's support. 

Despite the festive atmosphere, the specter of violence loomed large. Security measures were tightened across the city due to fears of potential attacks by ISIS-K, a rival terror group that has previously clashed with the Taliban. Suspicions mounted after a recent deadly attack in the eastern province of Khost was attributed to ISIS-K. 

Families of the Marines who lost their lives in the 2021 suicide attack at Kabul International Airport are still grappling for answers, two years after the tragic incident. The attack occurred during the chaotic evacuation as Western forces sought to withdraw from the country. Investigations have since revealed criticism of the decision to rely on the Taliban for airport security during the tumultuous evacuation process. The airport attack claimed the lives of 13 Americans and tragically resulted in the deaths of approximately 170 Afghan civilians who were attempting to escape the Taliban's resurgence.

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