President Biden is reportedly refusing to extend the deadline to pull all U.S. forces out of Afghanistan beyond August 31 – fearing a Taliban threat that such an extension would have serious consequences.
U.S. lawmakers and international leaders alike have requested extension of the deadline, which Joe Biden himself set and is now struggling to meet.
Biden’s decision risks pulling out U.S. forces before all American citizens and U.S. allies are evacuated from the country, now under Taliban control.
“Biden made the decision mindful of the security risks in remaining the country longer, the official said, and he has asked for contingency plans in case he determines at a later date the US needs to remain in the country for longer,” CNN reported.
Numerous U.S. lawmakers and allies had pushed Biden to extend the deadline and hold Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport open until all evacuations are complete. Britain Prime Minister Boris Johnson called an emergency meeting of G7 nations in part to push Biden to extend the deadline, allowing Britain, France, and other western countries to continue evacuation operations.
Biden, however, being the weak leader that he is, is being forced into submission by the Taliban who issued threats over the weekend after Biden signaled that he may extend the deadline.
“It’s a red line. President Biden announced that on 31 August they would withdraw all their military forces. So if they extend it that means they are extending occupation while there is no need for that. … If the U.S. or UK were to seek additional time to continue evacuations — the answer is no. Or there would be consequences,” Taliban spokesman Dr. Suhail Shaheen said.
“It will create mistrust between us. If they are intent on continuing the occupation, it will provoke a reaction,” he added.
The U.S. has been rushing to evacuate thousands of U.S. personnel and citizens and Afghan allies since Joe Biden’s poorly executed withdrawal paved the way for the Taliban to topple the Afghan government and take control of the country.
Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said Monday that completing evacuations by the end of the month is “very unlikely.”
“I think it’s very unlikely given the number of Americans who still need to be evacuated, the number of SIVs, the number of others who are members of the Afghan press, civil society leaders, women leaders, it’s hard for me to imagine all of that can be accomplished between now and the end of the month,” Schiff said.
“I am encouraged to see the numbers of people evacuated, increasing readily to the point where we evacuated 11,000 people in a single day. Nonetheless, given the logistical difficulties of moving people to the airport, and the limited number of workarounds, it’s hard for me to see that being fully complete by the end of the month.”
Critics hammered President Joe Biden on Tuesday after he decided against pushing back the deadline to pull out U.S. forces.
“Can’t believe the Taliban are dictating terms to the President of the United States while tacitly holding 10,000 Americans hostage using American weapons. If only we had some sort of military presence there, say 2,500 troops experiencing zero combat casualties, to prevent this,” The Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro tweeted.
“I mean, do you know how much easier all of this would be if we had control of, say, Bagram Airbase? And a large fighting force of anti-Taliban Afghans to prevent terrorist incursions into Kabul, supported by civilian contractors and close air support? Man, if only. If only,” he continued. “So glad the adults are back in charge.”
Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw added, “The world just witnessed the President of the United States take orders from a band of barbaric terrorists while ignoring the pleas of our international allies and American citizens he will leave behind. Joe Biden is a coward.”
Author: Darrius Lester