As Kabul falls, Biden’s spineless strategy and a defeatist speech reeking of a meek surrender have put the US President in a very tight spot ahead of the 2022 mid-term elections. The US President has issued two statements about the withdrawal of US military forces from Afghanistan and the resurgence of Taliban- one on July 8 and one on August 14.
Both of Biden’s statements were laced with defeatist remarks and false promises that are going to hurt the Democrats badly in the 2022 mid-term polls.
In his August 14 statement, Biden went as far as saying, “Our hearts go out to the brave Afghan men and women who are now at risk. We are working to evacuate thousands of those who helped our cause and their families.”
The expression “our hearts go out” itself shows that the Biden administration has given up on Afghanistan. You can literally witness the President of the United States, who commands the most powerful military force in the world impliedly accepting a defeat at the hands of a militant group like Taliban.
But it only gets worse. Biden had also assured, “I have directed the Secretary of State to support President Ghani and other Afghan leaders as they seek to prevent further bloodshed and pursue a political settlement. Secretary Blinken will also engage with key regional stakeholders.”
Biden assured support to President Ghani on August 14 and Kabul fell shortly thereafter. Ashraf Ghani, whom the US President promised to support, has fled the wartorn country even as Taliban stormed the Presidential Palace in Kabul. Taliban has literally purged a democratic regime in Kabul right under Biden’s nose and Afghanistan has now harked back to the era of complete Taliban rule.
UPDATE: Taliban enters Afghan presidential palace in Kabul after President Ghani leaves Afghanistan.
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) August 15, 2021
Biden, on his part, continues to play the blame game and wants to somehow scapegoat former US President Donald Trump for his own blunders.
Speaking about the US troops pullout, Biden said, “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.”
The US President added, “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.”
So, what Biden actually did was to seek permission from Taliban for a safe exit of the US military forces. And no matter how hard Biden tries to convince about what he inherited from his predecessor, everyone knows that Trump wouldn’t have agreed to a hasty, unconditional withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. He wouldn’t have let Taliban overrun Afghanistan like Biden has just done.
It is even more embarrassing for the Biden administration that it hasn’t been able to keep the promises that President Biden made while finalising the withdrawal process. On July 8, Biden had said, “the likelihood there’s going to be the Taliban overrunning everything and owning the whole country is highly unlikely.”
In fact, the US intelligence too had predicted that Taliban could take over Kabul within 90 days. However, Taliban has ended up overrunning and owning everything in Afghanistan, including Capital Kabul, in a matter of few days. The US withdrawal process is yet to be completed and Taliban has swallowed the wartorn country under Biden’s watch.
Meanwhile, even Biden’s own supporters feel embarrassed and aren’t ready to support him. Even the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has admitted that the Biden administration miscalculated the situation in Afghanistan. Blinken said, “The fact of the matter is we’ve seen that that force (Afghan national security forces) has been unable to defend the country.”
He added, “And that has happened more quickly than we anticipated.”
Ryan Crocker, who had served as the Ambassador to Afghanistan when the Obama-Biden administration was in power, also slammed the US President for his dubious Afghanistan policy. Crocker said, “I’m left with some grave questions in my mind about his (Biden’s) ability to lead our nation as commander-in-chief.”
The former Ambassador added, “To have read this so wrong – or, even worse, to have understood what was likely to happen and not care.”
Biden himself seems nonchalant about how he has sacrificed a democratic regime in Afghanistan to the Taliban. Afghanistan is in chaos only due to Biden’s dubious strategy of sidelining US allies like India in Afghanistan and letting the wartorn country become a plaything of other regional players like Pakistan, Russia and China.
And what is Biden doing? Well, he is silent. He isn’t even talking about the fall of Kabul. The US President is vacationing at Camp David Presidential retreat in Maryland. Biden is having a good time, while the people of Afghanistan are bracing themselves for a brutal and murderous reign to be helmed by the Taliban.
When the US goes to mid-term polls in 2022, Biden’s Afghanistan blunder will be a big factor that will be on every voter’s mind, irrespective of the traditional affiliation of the individual exercising his franchise.