Washington, July 25 : In its latest report, the International Crisis Group (ICG) has warned that the Taliban had developed sophisticated infrastructure and was carrying out an effective propaganda, and that the Afghanistan government should also develop an equally strong paraphernalia to counter the Taliban's might.
The report titled "Taliban Propaganda: Winning the War of Words?," examines the Taliban communication apparatus, which is exploiting popular disillusionment with the government and the US and other foreign troops.
Using the full range of media, the Taliban are successfully tapping into strains of Afghan nationalism.
"Out of power and lacking control over territory, the Taliban has proved adept at projecting itself as stronger than it is in terms of numbers and resources," according to the Daily Times quoted Joanna Nathan, ICG's senior analyst for South Asia, as saying.
He added: "Both Kabul and its international supporters need to respond in a timelier, co-ordinated manner if they are to effectively counter Taliban allegations."
According to the report, the Taliban have created a sophisticated communications apparatus projecting an increasingly confident movement as it tries to wear out its opponents. "Influencing perceptions at home and abroad is a vital component of their strategy. Much of the material is in Pashtu, and a shortage of language skills in the international community ensures that much either passes unnoticed or is misunderstood. The Afghan and other governments engaged in Afghanistan have failed to communicate robustly and honestly with their populations in a way that would help build and sustain popular will for a long-term endeavour," said the ICG report.
It added: "The Karzai government and its allies must make greater efforts, through word and deed, to address sources of alienation exploited in Taliban propaganda, the report suggested. By building institutions and offering the services that give the Afghan people a better life, the government can gain public support, thus denying the insurgents opportunities to exploit local grievances and thereby gain a modicum of legitimacy."