Afghanistan (MNN) — Today, on day 42 of Russia’s invasion, Ukraine’s President warns that Vladimir Putin will not back down until he controls all of Ukraine.
Hossein*, an Afghan believer working with Heart4Iran, says Russia’s actions in Ukraine look like the Taliban’s takeover of his country eight months ago.
“In Russia, all the magazine against the government is closed, parties or people arrested; the same [happened] in Afghanistan. They want to control everything and want people [to] accept what they say. They don’t accept anyone [who is] against them,” Hossein says.
“Dictatorship is a dictatorship; no matter if it’s communism or Islamic, all dictatorship does the same thing.”
Hossein says Afghans still feel betrayed today, especially by the United States, after the troop withdrawal. “What I hear from many people is they get so hopeless. All of us know that was the [worst] transition ever,” he states.
“Many Afghans had this expectation: that [one day, a] transition supposed to happen. But the bad transition [destroyed] all the past 20 years’ achievement. That’s why people [are] very hopeless, and they [think they are] forgotten.”
Afghanistan’s forgotten crisis
As the world focuses its attention on the war in Ukraine, the United Nations reminded the international community last week to remember Afghanistan.
Food security levels have plunged at an alarming rate, leaving half the population facing acute hunger, including nine million in a state of emergency food insecurity – the highest number in the world.
Humanitarian needs have tripled since last June, “and they are growing, day by day,” the UN chief warned:
“People are already selling their children and their body parts in order to feed their families. Afghanistan’s economy has effectively collapsed. There is very little cash … The first step in any meaningful humanitarian response must be to halt the death spiral of the Afghan economy. Without that, even the best-funded and most effective aid operation will not save the people of Afghanistan from an unimaginable future.”
Surrounded by despair, Afghans are increasingly open to the hope of Christ.
Citing Psalm 34:18, Hossein says, “‘God is near to the broken heart,’ and the (Afghan) heart is really broken. Now they are searching for God.”
“Many people (Afghans) understand the difference between the government and the people. This is a good thing. [They still expect and trust] the American or Western believers [to] stand with them, continue to support them,” Hossein says.
Header image depicts Russian President Vladimir Putin meeting with members of his government via video conference on March 10, 2022. (Wikimedia Commons)