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Biden has only himself to blame for the Taliban’s victory

3 6 0
17.08.2021

When an aging U.S. president, refusing to consider the conditions on the ground, overrules his military generals and intelligence agencies and orders a precipitous and ill-planned action, it is a sure recipe for a foreign policy disaster.

The blame for the international humiliation wrought on the United States by the terrorist capture of Afghanistan must be laid squarely at the door of President Joe Biden.

There was no strategic or domestic imperative for Biden to order a hasty, total pullout of the U.S. force in Afghanistan that had been drastically cut to just 2,500 soldiers by the time his predecessor, Donald Trump, left office. Yet Biden, the oldest American to assume the presidency, rebuffed his top military commanders’ advice in April and ordered all American troops to return home.

One myth is that the U.S. was tired of the Afghanistan War. In truth, Gallup polling over the past 20 years repeatedly found Americans to be more supportive than opposed to that military entanglement.

The sustained support to the longest war in American history was in stark contrast to previous U.S. wars, including in Korea, Vietnam and Iraq, during which the majority public opinion at some point turned unfavorable.

It was only after Biden effectively ended the Afghanistan War on July 1 (when the U.S. military secretly pulled out at night from the sprawling Bagram Airbase, which had long served as the staging ground for operations in the country) that an American partisan divide over the war became distinct. In a July 6-21 Gallup poll, 47% Americans (the vast majority of them Democrats) said the war was a mistake, while 46% said it........

© The Japan Times


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