This week marked 100 days since Kabul fell to the Taliban. Although the news cycle has moved on the situation in the war-torn country that absorbed so much of our attention, blood and treasure for two decades has gone from bad to worse.
While it is expedient for Joe Biden, Boris Johnson, and our own Prime Minister to subtly suggest what is happening in Afghanistan's cities and villages is no longer our problem, and that it is entirely the Taliban's fault, that is disingenuous and false.
Al-Qaeda, not the Afghans, were the ones who bombed the World Trade Centre.
Osama Bin Laden has been dead for many years and his organisation has been overtaken by new, and even more militant, groups.
Why is it, after years of bloodshed, millions of innocent men, women and children are still paying an unspeakable price for an atrocity they did not commit and a war they did not begin?
While much of the world's press has withdrawn from Kabul the reports being filed by the courageous correspondents and selfless aid workers who remain are absolutely dire.
The health system is broken, the country is heading into its worst winter in years with insufficient reserves of energy and fuel and, in many parts of the country, access to reliable electricity and potable water is only a memory. And, worst of all, millions of people across the country have no food, with one BBC journalist reporting "the country is marching towards famine".
This has created nightmare scenarios with reports of parents being forced to sell pre-adolescent girls into marriages to adults that are little short of being a form of sexual servitude in order to obtain the resources to keep their siblings alive. Truly a Sophie's Choice in our time.
In addition to the food shortages and soaring prices for basic necessities, Afghans are suffering in other ways, as well. The country's health system has collapsed.
Thousands of medical staff haven't been paid for months and, because the country is being starved of foreign aid as western governments try to put pressure on the new regime, clinics have no medicine or equipment.
The sick and the injured aren't the only ones impacted by this. While Afghanistan has one of the highest fertility rates in the world, with two babies born every minute, giving birth is now fraught with danger.
Although, on the surface, there is a case for withholding foreign aid and freezing Afghanistan's international assets in order to pressure the Taliban into honouring its commitments to give women and girls fundamental human rights, this argument collapses in the face of what is happening on the ground.
While human rights are important they don't trump survival itself. The ideological differences between the Taliban and the west did not stop the US, UK, and other governments from working with them to get their people out of Kabul. Why doesn't the same pragmatism apply in the case of the millions who have been left behind?
Is the imposition of our values on the Taliban more important than the lives of hundreds of thousands of people? Cold, starvation, disease and neglect are at risk of killing more Afghans than the militant Islamists and the western forces ever did.
The Taliban now controls Afghanistan. If western governments truly believe in the ideals they so frequently try to impose on others they should consider extending the hand of compassion and beginning to build a bridge to a better future for the Afghan people.
Starvation, poverty and disease will only further radicalise the population. If the Taliban were to collapse in the face of a humanitarian catastrophe it would almost certainly be replaced by something even worse.
Daesh-K is waiting in the wings.
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