WASHINGTON: President Joe Biden mentioned Wednesday that US troops will not depart any Individuals behind in Afghanistan, even when it means staying in Taliban-controlled Kabul for longer than agreed.
In his first interview for the reason that Taliban seized the Afghan capital, sparking a panicked exodus by foreigners and Afghan allies, Biden instructed ABC Information that “chaos” had been unavoidable.
US leaders have mentioned they’re sticking to an August 31 deadline for eradicating the final troops and handing over the nation to the victorious Taliban.
Nonetheless, Biden mentioned for the primary time that US troopers might keep longer if any Individuals have been nonetheless making an attempt to flee. “If there are Americans left, we will keep to get all of them out,” Biden mentioned.
The US president didn’t clarify how an extension would work.
The Taliban are presently standing apart as US troops fly in to safe Kabul’s airport and set up evacuations.
However the militants have full management of the remainder of town and are primarily capable of determine who will get by means of and who does not, whereas international forces are extremely restricted of their capability to maneuver safely past the confines of the airport.
Talking because the small US drive ramped up the frantic evacuations, Biden instructed ABC Information there was by no means going to be a simple exit.
“The concept by some means, there is a strategy to have gotten out with out chaos ensuing — I do not know the way that occurs,” Biden mentioned.
He added that the Taliban have been presently aiding the US forces they’d spent so a few years battling — at the very least in serving to international nationals to flee.
“They’re cooperating, letting Americans get out, American personnel get out, embassies get out, etcetera,” Biden mentioned.
Nonetheless, “we’re having some extra problem having those that helped us once we have been in there” depart, he mentioned, apparently referring to native Afghans who used to work alongside US and international forces and who now worry retribution.
Within the interview, the president rejected criticisms that his administration had suffered an enormous intelligence failure.
“It was a easy selection,” Biden mentioned.
Referring to the close to in a single day collapse of the Western-backed Afghan authorities and military within the face of the advancing Taliban, Biden mentioned he was satisfied the already deliberate US exit needed to proceed.
“The brink query was, will we commit to depart throughout the timeframe we set… or will we put considerably extra troops in?”
Requested what he’d thought when photos emerged of panicked Afghans swarming airplanes and stowaways falling out of the plane after take-off, Biden mentioned his response was: “We’ve got to achieve management of this, we’ve got to maneuver this extra shortly. We’ve got to maneuver in a means wherein we are able to take management of that airport. And we did.”