Weeks after the U.S. began final troop withdrawal from Afghanistan on July 6, the government has collapsed and the Taliban seized that opportunity to take back control of the capital Kabul.
The country is experiencing bedlam and the U.S. has today suspended all U.S. air operations out of the country, CNN reported. On Sunday, U.S. and other foreign personnel started to evacuate Afghanistan before air operations were shut down as Taliban fighters entered Kabul.
Meanwhile, President Joe Biden, who ordered the withdrawal of all 2,500 U.S. troops out of Afghanistan by the end of the summer, is blaming former President Donald Trump for the failures in Afghanistan.
Biden officials have admitted miscalculations after Afghanistan’s government fell rapidly.
“The fact of the matter is we’ve seen that that force has been unable to defend the country,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on CNN’s “State of the Union,” referring to Afghanistan’s national security forces. “And that has happened more quickly than we anticipated.”
Taliban militants released thousands of inmates from a large prison in Kabul on Sunday. Some are believed to have fought for the Islamic State and al Qaeda, Business Insider reported.
Biden, facing widespread backlash over his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan, announced he will be sending at least an additional 1,000 troops into the middle eastern nation, Daily Wire reported.
“First, based on the recommendations of our diplomatic, military, and intelligence teams, I have authorized the deployment of approximately 5,000 U.S. troops to make sure we can have an orderly and safe drawdown of U.S. personnel and other allied personnel, and an orderly and safe evacuation of Afghans who helped our troops during our mission and those at special risk from the Taliban advance,” Biden said in a statement.
Biden also tried to blame Trump.
“When I came to office, I inherited a deal cut by my predecessor — which he invited the Taliban to discuss at Camp David on the eve of 9/11 of 2019 — that left the Taliban in the strongest position militarily since 2001 and imposed a May 1, 2021 deadline on U.S. Forces,” Biden claimed.
But during his administration, Trump did not meet the Taliban because the meeting was canceled.
“Shortly before he left office, he also drew U.S. Forces down to a bare minimum of 2,500. Therefore, when I became president, I faced a choice — follow through on the deal, with a brief extension to get our forces and our allies’ forces out safely, or ramp up our presence and send more American troops to fight once again in another country’s civil conflict,” Biden added.
There are other reasons the Taliban has risen again, according to a Brookings Institute. Predatory crime such as drug smuggling and corruption in Afghanistan underpin the Taliban insurgency, said Vanda Felbab-Brown, director of the Initiative on Nonstate Armed Actors.
When the U.S. troops withdrew, the transition choices by the fragile Afghan government and the international community only “reinforced criminality and corruption in post-2001 Afghanistan. In turn, this delegitimizes the post-Taliban political dispensation,” Felbab-Brown reported.
Before the troop withdrawal, the international community and the Afghan government should have strengthened the rule of law and expanded political inclusiveness, according to Felbab-Brown.
President after U.S. president has been unable to change much in the troubled country during the 20-year presence in Afghanistan.
“Meanwhile, politics in Afghanistan remains fractious, self-interested, predatory, and engaged in constant brinkmanship at the expense of the national interest,” Felbab-Brown pointed out. “This, in a country, caught up in intensifying war and deep social and economic problems.”
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