Commentary

The Talibrand, New And Improved

The most ironic part of the media imagery surrounding the Taliban’s political takeover of Afghanistan is that unlike the U.S., theirs was a peaceful transition of power -- at least in terms of how it has engaged with the U.S. military.

Not one shot has been fired -- yet -- and the two sides have had surprisingly orderly communication surrounding the rules of engagement and how to evacuate U.S. citizens, etc. Compare that with the not-exactly-peaceful transition of power in the last U.S. presidential election.

That said, the Taliban continue their brutal ways when it comes to quelling domestic dissent and are likely to step that up as they escalate the imposition of Sharia law.

But at least so far, they are winning the PR war, utilizing social media, and even consenting to orderly interviews with Afghani media outlets, in an effort to position the Taliban as a “new and improved” brand of totalitarian Islamic fundamentalists.

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And in the ultimate spin job, the Taliban even consented to having a spokesman interviewed live on air by a popular female Afghani TV news anchor.

The Taliban have learned from other totalitarian regimes that modern war is more than just military might, but also requires an adept use of media -- especially social media -- has part of their hybrid warfare.

The U.S., by comparison, has lost the media battle, and has been portrayed by its own -- as well as foreign media outlets -- as losers, and has spent much of its time undermining its own leadership (President Biden), even though he is fulfilling an agreement made by his predecessor, as well as the will of the majority of the American public.

Which only goes to prove that all is not necessarily fair in love and hybrid war.

3 comments about "The Talibrand, New And Improved".
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  1. Matthew Gingrich from ---, August 23, 2021 at 9:39 a.m.

    I'm not sure a Taliban apologetics piece was really necessary.

  2. Dan Ciccone from STACKED Entertainment, August 24, 2021 at 3:19 a.m.

    Joe Mandese - This has to be your most daft political post by far - and that is saying a lot...


    "the Taliban’s political takeover of Afghanistan is that unlike the U.S., theirs was a peaceful transition of power..."


    You are conveniently and disgustingly overlooking the thousands of U.S.-trained Afghan personnel and Afghan citizens that are being killed and tortured as the Taliban just rolls through the country as the U.S. departs.  If this is a "peaceful transition" in your mind, you need to better educate yourself as to what is actually happening on the ground during this poorly-executed exit.  I'm sure the Afghan people who are being torched in the Taliban's wake do not see this as a "peaceful transition of power."


    Truly sad for you to post such nonsense and even more pathetic if you actually believe what you wrote.  If it was an attempt at humor, it was an incredibly off-the-mark and insensitve one.

  3. M Gingrich from Getty Images, August 30, 2021 at 9:43 a.m.

    How is your commentary holding up now @mp_joemandese?

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