Biden: Facing Criticism Is Better Than Passing the Withdrawal Decision
US President Joe Biden affirms his commitment to US Army personnel in not being asked to risk their lives in conflicts that should have ended long ago.
Joe Biden said he owes it to the heroic women and men who serve in the US Army to not ask them to risk their lives in conflicts that should have ended years ago.
Today, Biden said in a tweet that he would not have asked heroic US soldiers to risk their lives in a military action that should have ended years ago.
He went on to say that in the Vietnam War, US officials had asked military personnel to risk their lives and engage in military action, but he will not do so in Afghanistan.
I made a commitment to the brave men and women who serve this nation — that I wasn’t going to ask them to continue to risk their lives in a military action that should have ended long ago. pic.twitter.com/GVMFeCsEHt— President Biden (@POTUS) August 17, 2021
In response to criticism of the US President's decision to withdraw from Afghanistan, Biden stated that he understands that his decision would be criticized, but that he would rather face these critics than pass the withdrawal decision and leave it to the next president.
Biden went on to say that if the withdrawal decision is not made soon, the next president will be the fifth president to witness the Afghan war. He went on to explain that this was the right decision for the US president to make and that it was made for the sake of the US people and the courageous US Army soldiers who risked their lives for the nation.
Yesterday, Biden, from the White House, indicated that developments in Afghanistan are speeding up and that he is facing harsh criticism for the way he handled the Afghan crisis at a time when US forces are continuing to withdraw from the country. This comes following the Taliban Movement's victory and control of most Afghan provinces and cross-border zones.
"Our mission in Afghanistan was never supposed to have been nation-building. It was never supposed to be creating a unified centralized democracy," Biden said. He noted that the only vital US interest in Afghanistan today is "preventing terrorist attacks on the American homeland," noting that the terrorist threat against the US has decreased.
US President Biden interrupted Monday his holiday at Camp David and returned to the White House following the fall of Kabul that took the world by surprise.
Previously, in his latest statement on the developments in Afghanistan, Biden said he has no regrets. "I do not regret my decision"; he then added that the Afghans must fight for their country.
Jake Sullivan: Biden bears responsibility for any decision made on Afghanistan
National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, for his part, stated that the US is in contact with the Taliban in order to assure safe passage to the Kabul airport.
Sullivan, in a press statement, said that the US military presence in Afghanistan would not have stopped the Taliban's advance and that the US might have paid a high price, emphasizing that Biden holds responsibility for any choice made on Afghanistan.
He went on to say that defeating the Taliban would have necessitated a larger military presence, which may have resulted in more casualties and the deaths of more US men and women in Afghanistan. He emphasized that Biden did not want more Americans to die in any other civil war.
Sullivan stated that the US is working hard and on a daily basis to evacuate as many people as possible, adding that the US has been calling US citizens for weeks to advise them to leave, but many have chosen to stay till the end.
He went on to say that the Taliban has told the US that it is prepared to facilitate safe passage for civilians to the airport and that the US will assess how well they follow through on this commitment. He revealed that Biden discussed the security situation at the Kabul airport with the Minister of Defense and military leaders.
In the next days, the US will maintain in touch with its allies and partners while remaining cautious against terrorist threats in Afghanistan and elsewhere, according to Sullivan. In 2011, the US announced that it would leave Afghanistan by 2014, but that did not happen, and the US lingered for another seven years. President Biden is striving to achieve the US's critical national security goals, according to Sullivan.