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Why the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has ‘enormous’ implications for Australia

Neil Mitchell
Taliban in Afghanistan

Taliban fighters have poured into Kabul, Afghani President Ashraf Ghani has fled abroad, and Western countries are rushing to try and evacuate diplomats, citizens and Afghan interpreters and contractors who worked closely with Western forces.

It’s a shockingly swift return to power by the Taliban, which has seized more than a dozen provincial capitals in a fortnight.

It comes after a hasty withdrawal from the region by the US and NATO allies, including those from Australia.

Professor of human security at Curtin University, Joe Siracusa, says the implications of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan are “enormous”.

“The entry of the Taliban yesterday … what we have now is a rebooting of international terrorism,” he told Neil Mitchell.

“It will once again become a breeding ground for terrorism and it will attract every crazy Islamist extremist in that part of the world.

“Sometimes the cancer comes back. We did everything we could at the time.”

Press PLAY below to hear Professor Siracusa’s view on the international implications of the Taliban takeover¬†

Doug Baird, father of Victoria Cross recipient, Corporal Cameron Baird, who is one of the 41 Australian troops who died in Afghanistan, says he’s got “very mixed feelings about this whole thing”.

“I can’t help but think this is what was always going to happen,” he told Neil Mitchell.

“As much as Australian soldiers that have served over there have done an absolutely magnificent job to try and help the people of Afghanistan have a better life … it just was never really going to happen.”

But Mr Baird said his didn’t lose his life for nothing.

“Their lives will always be remembered for trying to do what Australians do, and forge a better life for other people,” he said.

Press PLAY below to hear how Doug Baird feels about the Taliban’s return

Image: Str/Xinhua via Getty Images

Neil Mitchell