Reports have been published in the US media that Trump’s Security team briefed the President about an uncorroborated intelligence indicative of China’s bounty on American troops in Afghanistan during President Daily brief (PDB) in mid-December 2020. As per unconfirmed intelligence China made this offer to finance the non-state actors in Afghanistan to attack the US Soldiers. The possible time of attack is likely in February 2021, when US forces will be engaging to prepare for drawdown from Afghanistan. Media also reported that Trump administration National Security Council is verifying/ confirming the Intelligence through US Intelligence Community. Earlier similar news reports indicated that the Russian had secretly offered bounties for Taliban militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
Till so far, US National Security apparatus is working to authenticate the sources of information, the time of activity, the prospects whom the bounty has been offered and possible time of attacks on US troops. As per Intelligence experts, it is just raw information, US administration possess the best Intelligence Agencies of the World with unlimited resources. It is not possible for such a professional Intelligence Apparatus to present a sketchy information to the President about an activity likely to happen after 2-3 months rather they will verify the information first than brief the President on it. It is only a news story of an immature Journalist to grab the attention of his readers. In June 2020, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany lashed out at the New York Times for publishing “unverified” news about the Russian bounty intelligence. She commented that “rough Intelligence officers” were undermining Trump and U.S. security.
For corroborating and confirmation of this so-called Intelligence, one must think that what could be the motives behind the killing of American soldiers in Afghanistan and if so, happened what will be likely reaction of the US.? and lastly who is not in favor of US drawdown from Afghanistan. The motives behind the killing of US soldiers during drawdown means to obstruct or stop the drawdown of US troops from Afghanistan and to ignite the new battle in Afghanistan or to renew the existing one that is war on Terror.
Peoples Republic of China does not fit into this phenomenon because the lawlessness and instability in Afghanistan, provide a suitable base training camp and hide out to the separatist elements of East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM). China had approached both Afghan Government and Taliban not to permit ETIM to use Afghan soil against China but both parties put the blame on each other. It is also apparent from China efforts in facilitation of Afghan Reconciliation process that it is sincere in the peace process. Furthermore, China was a bit uneasy from US presence in Afghanistan due to its internal security problems such as Xinjiang and Tibet issues.
On other hand, India is a single Country in the region, who not only openly opposed the Afghan reconciliation process due to key role of Pakistan and want to escalate the tension between United States and China for its own interests. India remains active in managing conspiracies against China and Pakistan. India has five diplomatic missions in Afghanistan which are being used as launching base for RAW covert operation against both Pakistan and China. It also uses Uyghur separatists and Tibetan nationalists against China. On 25th December, India media published a fake story about the arrest of 10 Chinese nationals by NDS due to their alleged involvement in Espionage and linked this group with ISI and Chines Intelligence. However, First Vice President Amrullah Saleh denied the arrest of any foreign national in the operation in a media interaction on 27 December 2020.
The Afghan peace process has reached at a turning point, and there are enough evidences that some sections are trying to disrupt or derailed this ongoing process because it does not suit to their interests. Pakistan has categorically warned the US and Afghan government about it. Instead of getting into trap, US and other stakeholders must nullify these conspiracies.
Afghan government should reconsider huge Diplomatic presence of India across the Country in the name of development work, business or community affairs. Hopefully, US media will also reevaluate its functioning and consider the publishing of unconfirmed stories for temporary popularity.