Despite the Taliban’s advance, Joe Biden has no intention of changing his mind. The US president explained Tuesday that he “does not regret” his decision to complete the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan at the end of the month. Therefore, the defense of the territory is now in the hands of the Afghans, who must find, according to the tenant of the White House, “the will to fight.”
The last American troops must have left Afghanistan on August 31, ending twenty years of war for the United States. Since the Democratic president announced the deadline about a month ago, the Taliban have been steadily gaining ground. They seized two new Afghan provincial capitals on Tuesday, Farah in the west and Pul-e Khumri in the north, from which civilians were fleeing en masse.
Afghans “must fight for themselves, for their nation.” “We have spent more than $ 1,000 billion in twenty years, training and equipping … more than 300,000 Afghan soldiers,” recalled Joe Biden. However, he assured that the Americans “will keep their promise” to continue supporting the Afghan army logistically and economically.
Along the same lines, State Department spokesman Ned Price told him on Tuesday that the Afghan armed forces were “far superior in number” to the Taliban and that they had “the potential to inflict losses, the most important thing.” “This idea that the advance of the Taliban cannot be stopped (…), is not the reality on the ground,” he estimated. Yet the swift Taliban now control eight of Afghanistan’s 34 provincial capitals, including six of the nine in the north, and fighting continues in the other three.