Biden says troops will stay in Afghanistan as long as it takes to evacuate all US civilians
Joe Biden said US troops will remain in Afghanistan until all remaining US citizens – and citizens of US allies – are evacuated from the country after receiving criticism for the chaotic withdrawal of US forces.
In a defensive interview with George Stephanopoulos of ABC News on Wednesday, Mr Biden said there was no way to avoid ‘chaos’ by leaving Afghanistan, and that he was committed to evacuating the Americans and their allies before the August 31 deadline, but that if any American citizens were still in the country, its forces would “stay until we get them all out.”
At Thursday’s Pentagon briefing, it was revealed that an additional 2,000 people had been evacuated in the past 24 hours, but bottlenecks in getting people into Kabul airport, rather than the ability to flight, are the real challenge.
The State Department said 6,000 people were treated at the airport and spokesman Ned Rice said they hope to take off 20 ground flights tonight, which could clear the majority of between them.
Domestically, new jobless claims have fallen to pandemic lows, and the Biden administration has announced it is wiping out $ 5.8 billion in student debt for Americans with disabilities.
Hello and welcome to The independents continued coverage of the Biden administration and the ongoing response to the US withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Gino SpocchiaAugust 19, 2021 10:42 AM
US ‘will stay’ until citizens and their allies are evacuated, says Biden
US President Joe Biden told ABC News Wednesday night that he is committed to doing “everything in our power” to get Americans and US allies out of Afghanistan before the deadline of 31. August, after being criticized for not anticipating the fall of Kabul. Taliban on weekends.
Mr. Biden, who was asked what he would do if there were any Americans left in Afghanistan after August 31, said that “if there are any remaining American citizens, we will stay until we have them. have all gone out ”. It is believed that there are 10,000 to 15,000 Americans alone in the country.
It follows the airlift of Americans from the roof of the country’s embassy in Kabul on Sunday as the Taliban advanced on the Afghan capital. Many have argued that the scenes recall the fall of Saigon and Vietnam in 1975, when Americans were also forced to flee.
Mr. Biden said in the ABC News interview that “chaos” was inevitable. This has been contested by intelligence officials and its opponents.
Gino SpocchiaAug 19, 2021 10:51 AM
US presence in Kabul depends on pace of evacuations
The US president, who has said he is determined to evacuate the Americans and their allies, said the presence of US troops in the country depends on the daily exit of thousands of US citizens and allies.
US officials said on Tuesday they had evacuated 3,200 people from Afghanistan, including all embassy staff, since the fall of Kabul on Sunday, which Biden described Wednesday night as “five days ago.”
That figure was outside a group of American employees working from Kabul International Airport, as well as 6,000 American troops carrying out the evacuation.
Gino SpocchiaAug 19, 2021 11:03 AM
Mark Milley says there was no indication of the fall of the Afghan government
Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on Wednesday there was no information to suggest the Afghan military would deteriorate in just 11 days, amid criticism for not anticipating the withdrawal chaotic United States of the country.
Mr Milley said he was keen to respond to information on alleged intelligence suggesting otherwise and that he was sworn in during testimony before Congress on the “multiple scenarios” indicated by US intelligence services.
This timeline, he said, ranged from weeks to years. He added: “There is nothing that I or anyone else has seen that indicates a collapse of this army and this government in 11 days.”
Gino Spocchia19 Aug 2021 11:21
Biden under fire for saying ‘chaos’ was inevitable
Mr Biden was attacked on Wednesday night after saying there was no way the United States could withdraw from Afghanistan “without chaos ensuing”.
Among the voices was Nikki Haley, Donald Trump’s former US Ambassador to the UN, who tweeted that it was “such a slap in the face for the thousands of Americans still in Afghanistan.”
Gino SpocchiaAugust 19, 2021 11:41
US can’t expand forces beyond Kabul, Austin says
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Wednesday that the United States lacks the capacity to pick up Americans and their allies, as well as refugees, beyond the confines of Kabul airport.
“I don’t have the capacity to go out and expand operations right now in Kabul,” Austin said. “And where are you taking this?” How far do you go into Kabul, and how long does it take to bring in those forces to be able to do that? “
Mr Austin, a retired four-star army general who commanded the forces in Afghanistan, was speaking at his first Pentagon press conference since the Taliban seized power in Kabul on Sunday.
It comes amid reports that 10,000 to 15,000 Americans, along with more than 50,000 Afghans, are waiting for airlifts across the country, after the Taliban recaptured Kabul with unexpected speed. The militant group, according to reports on the ground, was preventing individuals from reaching Kabul and the airport.
Additional reporting by The Associated Press.
Gino SpocchiaAug 19, 2021 11:55 AM
Former CIA Officer Says Intelligence Failure ‘Probably Not’
Paul Pillar, a former CIA officer who teaches at Georgetown University, said in an interview that Mr Biden understood the risks of withdrawing from Afghanistan, but that the US president “was functioning as his own senior analyst” .
“The Taliban would win in the end,” Pillar told the BBC on Wednesday. “But the speed or the pace, or when something is going to happen, is essentially unpredictable. “
“Was it an intelligence failure? My guess is probably not ”.
Gino SpocchiaAugust 19, 2021 12:05 PM
Republican figures step up attacks on Biden after interview
Mr Biden was accused of publishing a “blatant lie” by Republican Senator Tom Cotton, who was among many voices condemning the US president for saying “chaos” was inevitable in Afghanistan.
It comes as more than 10,000 Americans and thousands more Afghans remain in the country. They are awaiting the evacuation of the Taliban, who surprised the world by retaking Kabul on Sunday a few weeks after the United States withdrew from the country.
MP Liz Cheney said Mr Biden’s comments were “truly ignorant and shameful”, and Meghan McCain – the daughter of late Republican Senator John McCain – said the Democrat was “like Jimmy Carter on acid,” apparently doing reference to the American withdrawal. from Saigon.
She shared a clip of the chaotic scene around Kabul airport, where several people have been shot in recent days.
Gino Spocchia19 August 2021 12:15
State governors offer to welcome Afghan refugees
Eleven state governors have announced plans to take in Afghan refugees after the US government said it would settle 22,000 of those seeking asylum after fleeing Afghanistan.
Governors of 11 states – including six Republicans and five Democrats – have said they will be ready to welcome the refugees, who will be taken to temporary locations in Fort Bliss, Texas, and Camp McCoy, Wisconsin, upon their arrival.
A US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Reuters that “too much has to go 100% right” to evacuate all those who have applied for Special Immigration Visas (SIVs). This includes the chaos around Kabul International Airport.
Gino SpocchiaAugust 19, 2021 12:40
What will happen to Afghan refugees arriving in the United States?
Two temporary facilities have the capacity to cope with tens of thousands of new arrivals from Afghanistan, according to Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, who detailed what will happen to visa applicants arriving in the United States. United.
Mr Kirby told Fox News that the two facilities – at U.S. military sites in Texas and Wisconsin – will allow the United States to screen at least 22,000 refugees who have applied for special immigrant visas for Afghans (SIV ).
The visa program offers places to Afghans who have worked with the United States during the two decades that American forces were stationed in the country and covers their family members. According to reports, SIV’s requests were pending before Kabul’s unexpected fall to the Taliban.