The Afghan war has shaped the beginning of the 21st century.
Twenty years after September 11, 2001, the American army leaves Afghanistan at the end of the longest war in its history. With a bitter taste: the war waged to eradicate Al-Qaeda, to obtain a “lasting freedom” and bring about democracy, quickly turned into a quagmire.
Through the personal stories of major actors in this conflict as well as Afghan, American and French participants, the film aims to shed light on the reasons for the American failure, comparing them to those that led to the victory of the Taliban.
Despite more than $2.3 trillion spent by the United States, the strategy to build an Afghan state during this 20-year period, collapsed within days. The Afghan army evaporated almost without a fight, the Afghan President fled. This power vacuum has exposed the dependence of the regime and its economy on Western aid. In the end, the Afghan people who believed in the good intentions of the West were abandoned like a patient whose drip was ripped off.
The recent regime change gives us Westerners the opportunity to hear from these men in the shadows, the Taliban. We are one of the few to have given them a voice since 2006, on several occasions. And thanks to their personal experience, ordinary Afghan citizens as well as decision-makers can make us understand these 20 years of Western failure, but also of Taliban resilience. It's time to hear them all.
Festivals and Awards:
* 2022: Nominated for the PRIX EUROPA 2022 TV Documentary Category. (winners announced on 28 Oct. in Potsdam, Germany)