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Blinken defends U.S. military withdrawal from chaotic Afghanistan

US Foreign Policy Update

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken defended the chaotic and bloody withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan without apologizing when he appeared in front of Capitol Hill lawmakers.

In a prepared statement released prior to a hearing at the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday, Blinken said, “Even the most pessimistic assessment is that Kabul’s government forces will collapse while the U.S. military remains. I didn’t expect that. ” Longer beings would have changed the outcome.

“If 20 years and hundreds of billions of dollars of support, equipment and training weren’t enough, why would it make a difference in another year, five or ten years?” Blinken asked.

“Conversely, strategic competitors like China and Russia, or adversaries like Iran and North Korea, want more than the United States resumes its 20-year war and stays stagnant in Afghanistan for another 10 years. I’ve never been. “He added.

Michael McCaul, a top Republican member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, called the withdrawal of Afghanistan an “epic-scale unreduced disaster” at the start of Monday’s hearing, and many Afghans are now executed by the Taliban. Warned that there was a risk of being killed. He said the United States would be severely restricted in countering the threat of domestic terrorism.

“We have no eyes or ears on the ground. We have lost intelligence in the area,” McCall said. Blinken replied that he believed that the United States could “effectively” deal with terrorism without “ground boots.”

“By not putting these boots on the ground in Afghanistan, we certainly lost some ability, but we have a way and we are very active in making up for it.” Blinken said.

Biden administration officials said their options for managing the withdrawal were limited by former President Donald Trump’s own arrangements with the Taliban, which originally set a withdrawal date of May 1. President Joe Biden later extended it until August 31st.

California Democrat Brad Sherman asked Blinken how “careful” the Trump administration’s military withdrawal plan was, Blinken replied: We did not inherit the plan. “

The Biden administration has been strongly criticized for misunderstanding the situation on the ground. Afghanistan Against the Taliban’s occupation of the country’s major cities and control of Kabul, prior to last month’s withdrawal and ahead of schedule by August 31st.

Thousands of people trying to flee the country during the last few days of the U.S. military surrounded Hamid Karzai International Airport, and a terrorist attack at the airport gates led to Afghan civilians and 13 members of the U.S. military..

Meanwhile, thousands of vulnerable Afghans who assisted the Allies during the 20-year conflict Left behindSome of them remain in the country, as did up to 200 Americans.

“We have evacuated the embassy, ​​and Americans, and we have made special promises, as we did in other countries where hundreds and even thousands of Americans are lagging behind. If Afghanistan chooses, it will continue to help leave Afghanistan, such as Libya, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, and Somalia. This mission has no deadline, “Brinken said.

He said the United States would continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the country, even though the Taliban, which is under US sanctions, now dominates Afghanistan. “In line with sanctions, this aid does not flow through government, but through independent organizations such as NGOs and UN agencies.”

The Democratic Party mainly supported Blinken’s defense. After South Carolina Republican Joe Wilson asked Blinken to resign, Virginia Democrat Gerry Connolly said: Selective facts — and many memory loss in salad dressings. ”

Blinken defends U.S. military withdrawal from chaotic Afghanistan

Source link Blinken defends U.S. military withdrawal from chaotic Afghanistan

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