Wikipedia 'War in Afghanistan' Article Describes It As a 'Taliban Victory'

The Wikipedia page detailing the war in Afghanistan has been edited to list the result of the 20-year conflict as a "Taliban victory."

A blog post titled "The Taliban's victory proves the West has failed to learn the lessons of the past" which was written by Effie G. H. Pedaliu at the London School of Economics, has been cited as a primary source in the edit.

Articles from the New York Times, Fox News, Politico, BBC News, The Washington Post, Radio France Internationale and Deutsche Welle referencing the Taliban victory have also been included in the web resource's footnotes.

It's a description that is unlikely to sit well with many Americans, particularly given Wikipedia's status as the world's largest and most popular reference website.

According to figures published by Wikipedia, as of November 2020, the website was attracting around 1.7 billion unique users every month.

First established on January 15, 2001, Wikipedia was set up with the express aim of creating "a world in which everyone can freely share in the sum of all knowledge."

The website is written and managed by a pool of anonymous volunteers working collaboratively.

While anyone with access to the internet is able to write and edit articles posted on Wikipedia, in select cases editing is restricted on content deemed sensitive and prone to vandalism or disruption.

In this instance, no such restrictions appear to be in place.

Newsweek has reached out to Wikipedia for confirmation .

While this description of the Afghanistan War may upset some, the information published on Wikipedia is not without its skeptics.

Those skeptics include Larry Sanger, an Internet project developer and philosopher who co-founded the website with Jimmy Wales.

In an interview with Lockdown TV back in July, Sanger said the website "seems to assume that there is only one legitimate defensible version of the truth on any controversial question" adding "that's not how Wikipedia used to be."

As an example, he cited the website's article about President Joe Biden.

"If you look at it, has very little by way of the concerns that Republicans have had about him," he said. "So if you want to have anything remotely resembling the Republican point of view about Biden, you're not going to get it from the article."

Sanger said the article should have included information about the allegations involving the President's son Hunter Biden and his ties to Ukraine.

He argued that there should be at least a paragraph on the topic but that "very little of that can be found in Wikipedia."

"What little can be found is extremely biased and reads like a defense counsel's brief," he added.

Quite what Wikipedia will make of Biden's handling of the U.S. exit from Afghanistan remains to be seen. The President has come in for staunch criticism over his role in the withdrawal and the Taliban's swift return to power.

Over the weekend, Biden drew yet more criticism after a video surfaced online showing him appearing to check his watch during a ceremony for the repatriation of American service members killed in Afghanistan.

Despite enduring a significant backlash, however, President Biden's approval rating remains higher than that of former President Donald Trump at this same point in his presidency.

Taliban Badri special force fighters.
Taliban Badri special force fighters at the airport in Kabul after the US has pulled all its troops out of the country to end a brutal 20-year war -- A WIkipedia entry detailing the conflicted has listed the result as a "Taliban Victory" Wakil Kohsar/AFP via Getty Images)