Peace, joy and pancakes? An assessment of the past 15 years of occupation and war revealed how immensely the US and its allies have failed in Afghanistan. The war in Afghanistan has not made the world any safer. Just like the war against Iraq in 2003, it rather enforced the uprising of terrorist cells around the world. But how is the situation in Afghanistan now? 1 Peace Afghanistan is still not any closer to a peaceful existence. In 2013 the country was – according to the ‘World Peace Index’ of the prestigious British magazine ‘The Economist’ – the least peaceful country in the world. Less peaceful than Iraq, Syria and Somalia. Within a global categorisation of the failed states (a country whose government is considered to have failed at some of its basic responsibilities), Afghanistan ranks 1st place in Asia and 7th place worldwide More than 100,000 Afghans were killed, among others, by 1,228 cluster bombs and 295,000 individual explosives, which landed in just the first year of the war, reports “Doctors Against Nuclear War”. 2 Taliban As with the withdrawal of the Soviets in 1989, the Taliban rule the rural areas of the country. The national Afghan forces wait disconcerted in the big cities. Every year one third deserts. The Taliban can strike almost at will. 3 Education The situation in the education sector is catastrophic. Afghanistan has the worst average duration of schooling in the whole of Asia. 47% of schools have no school buildings and 75% no toilets. About two-thirds of school-age children don’t even reach the 6th grade. 4 Girls and Women According to the “Reuters Foundation”, Afghanistan is the most dangerous country for women in the world, just ahead of Democratic Republic of Congo. Only 13% of girls finish school. Whole 30% make it to the 6th grade. Only 50% of 416 districts have a primary or secondary school for girls. And only 20% of girls attend a gymnasium. For years, according to the UN, the Taliban have allowed their girls to attend school in areas where there are already educational infrastructures in place. So actually, for this a war was never needed. 5 Health According to the World Bank, three-quarters of Afghans have no access to safe drinking water. There is no other country in the world where so many children under 5 years suffer from severe malnutrition. Afghanistan has the highest mortality rate in Asia in this age group. When it comes to infant mortality the country is the world’s number one. 6 Corruption Together with North Korea and Somalia, according to “Transparency International”, Afghanistan is the most corrupt country in the world. Also the money laundering index of the Basel Institute “ICAR” ranks Afghanistan as number one. Afghanistan houses the criminal ‘elite’ of the world. 7 Justice Many provinces are ruled by armed criminal private armies, who have already been in power for years, as well as newly armed warlords. Sometimes both turn out to be secret allies of the NATO. War criminals, as the bloodthirsty General Dostum, are best friends with the United States. American killings of civilians and prisoners are not tracked. Practices of torture are ignored too, despite all the pretty speeches of the US president. The Afghan judicial system is considered the most corrupt part of all state authorities, even though they are under pressure from the United States. Justice is unheard of in Afghanistan. 8 Democracy Democracy as we know it, can’t be found in Afghanistan. Generally, the results of the presidential elections are falsified by all the candidates. After that the winner will be a part of dirty horse-trading with the substantial involvement of the United States. A success-story! The people of Afghanistan deserve better than to bear the results of a misguided war dominated by western foreign policy. Conflictfood wants to open up new markets to selected Afghan products and their producers, and to help Afghanistan do better. We visited a women’s collective in the province of Herat, who have managed: To switch from opium to saffron cultivation! This is a small success story and we want to promote it. We bought saffron from the collective for a fair price, paid directly and brought it to you. We thereby strengthen local structures, thus offer people a new perspective and help combat causes of immigration at its roots. Soon you’ll learn more about the group of women who cultivate this precious saffron! Read more about Afghanistan 8. January 2020 The Ancient Art of Healing – Saffron in Ayurvedic Medicine 7. November 2019 Silkroad’s bright spot 30. August 2019 The Saffron-Question: Real or Fake?