President Biden Pulls Troops out of Afghanistan
The Taliban had terrorized Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001, when they fled the country following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Following the 9/11 attacks, the U.S. declared war and stationed troops in Afghanistan. The war remained relatively at a stalemate for six years. The Taliban no longer had control, but continued to attack rural districts and carry out suicide missions. In February 2020, with Donald Trump as president, the United States signed a peace treaty with the Taliban and an agreement to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. Despite the peace treaty and with 95% of U.S. troops out of the country, the Taliban continued their attacks in the summer of 2021, seizing ten capitals. On August 15, 2021, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country when threatened by Taliban fighters. The Afghan government collapsed, allowing the Taliban to take control of Afghanistan once again. The Biden administration deployed six thousand troops to assist in the evacuation of U.S. and allied personnel, as well as Afghans attempting to flee. President Biden announced that U.S. troops would still be evacuated from Afghanistan, meeting with backlash as the humanitarian crisis escalated. Despite polarizing opinions on the subject, I believe that evacuating U.S. troops is the right thing to do in the wake of the Taliban’s takeover.
Once the Taliban lost power in Afghanistan, United States troops in the country worked to build and train an army of Afghan soldiers in case the Taliban ever came to reclaim power. We supplied them with weapons, hoping that the newly trained soldiers would fight tirelessly against terrorism. However, once the Taliban came to reclaim their power, Afghan soldiers laid their weapons down and allowed the country to fall back into the vicious terrorist dictatorship without a shot fired. As President Biden announced on Twitter, it is unfair to keep United States soldiers in Afghanistan fighting for a people that won’t fight for themselves. Obviously, our hearts go out to the innocent civilians affected by the Taliban’s ruthless rule, but we should not continue sacrificing our soldiers when we have done as much as we can to help them help themselves. A mass exodus of Afghans seems to be in order, so hopefully the doors to the United States stay open for those seeking refuge from the horrors of the Taliban.