by Debra Heine
The Biden administration’s botched withdrawal from Afghanistan and the desperate situation in Kabul has angered U.S. allies, leaving them scrambling to evacuate their citizens and the Afghans who supported them during the 20 year war.
The United Kingdom’s Parliament on Wednesday held Joe Biden in contempt for Afghan debacle, with one veteran MP saying the U.S. abandoned its Afghan allies and disregarded their sacrifices.
Tom Tugendhat, a British Army veteran of the Afghanistan war and the Conservative chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, blasted Biden for his criticism of the Afghan National Army and said it was “shameful” to blame Afghanistan’s fighting force for the Taliban’s takeover.
After Afghanistan fell to the Taliban, Biden said, “American troops cannot and should not be fighting in a war, and dying in a war, that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves.”
“To see their commander in chief call into question the courage of men I fought with—to claim that they ran—is shameful,” he said.
“Those who have never fought for the colors they fly should be careful about criticizing those who have,” Tugendhat added.
An extraordinary and moving speech from veteran MP Tom Tugendhat, with very harsh words for President Biden on Afghanistan
“To see their commander in chief call into question the courage of men I fought with, is shameful.” pic.twitter.com/ZgEEHwD9MI
— James Longman (@JamesAALongman) August 18, 2021
The withdrawal led to panic in Kabul, the capital city, on Monday, as thousands of Afghans flooded the Hamid Karzai International Airport, hoping to evacuate from Kabul. Some desperately clung to U.S. aircraft as they took off. One was found dead in a cargo jet’s wheel well. Two others fell to their deaths as the planes took off. Some Afghan mothers on Thursday even began throwing their babies over barbed wire fences as they shouted at British troops to save them from the Taliban.
The swift takeover has prompted protests by Afghans in Kabul and other cities. The Taliban has killed some participants by firing on the crowds.
More than 8,000 people have been flown out of Kabul this week. Biden said Wednesday that the U.S. military may stay in the nation past his administration’s Aug. 31 deadline to evacuate more Americans. But troops do not have the capability to aid anyone beyond Kabul’s airport, he said.
While American troops remain at the Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKAIA ), Great Britain and France, are conducting military operations to evacuate their citizens trapped in Kabul behind the web of Taliban checkpoints lining the route to the airport.
Great Britain earlier this week deployed an additional 300 troops to Kabul specifically to extract trapped British nationals.
Within hours of touching down in Kabul, the British troops retrieved some 200 British nationals from around Kabul, the Telegraph reported. Prompting the mission were reports of Taliban hunting down former Afghan government officials, along with Britons stuck behind a web of Taliban checkpoints lining the route to the airport.
France 24 reports that the French military has been conducting similar operations since Monday. French President Emmanuel Macron thanked French security forces on Twitter for executing a ‘sensitive operation’ which evacuated more than 200 French and Afghans.
Près de 200 Afghans qui ont travaillé pour la France ou qui sont menacés viennent d’être évacués de Kaboul. Ainsi que des Français et des ressortissants étrangers. À nos armées, policiers et équipes diplomatiques qui organisent ces opérations sensibles, merci. On continue. pic.twitter.com/xHSreTLOLI
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) August 18, 2021
“France and the U.K. are having their troops leave the lines of the Kabul airport to help evacuate their citizens,” tweeted House Minority Kevin McCarthy. “Why has President Biden not directed the same to save stranded Americans?”
One British soldier broke down in tears during an interview with CNN reporter Clarissa Ward, telling her that he will suffer from PTSD from the horrific events of the past week.
CNN's Clarissa Ward tells the story of speaking with a British soldier who did two deployments to Helmand Province in Afghanistan, as he witnessed the current chaos. He told her, "the PTSD I will have from the last week is way more intense than those two deployments." pic.twitter.com/MDKeXJXD2G
— Nicholas Fondacaro (@NickFondacaro) August 20, 2021
The Taliban have been beating people in the streets and blocking access to the Kabul airport, contrary to their promises to the U.S. government.
Sincere respect to DoD, but we have spoken directly with evacuees on the ground who have had backs and hands broken and concussions from the Taliban. That’s today. Current. We have been sent text photos of Taliban checkpoints obstructing movement to airport. They aren’t complying
— John Noonan (@noonanjo) August 19, 2021
A source tells me, “Situation [in Afghanistan] is rapidly deteriorating… We’ve had Americans get beaten throughout the night.” One of them, an American woman, was beaten “twice” even though she was carrying a U.S. passport.
— Sasha Ingber (@SashaIngber) August 20, 2021
American teacher trapped in Afghanistan: “It is insane…They’re not letting anyone in. We are in huge danger and we need help." pic.twitter.com/J4GuZ53Olp
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 20, 2021
During remarks from the White House on Friday, Biden boasted that there are now over 6,000 American troops on the ground providing “runway security” at the airport.
“This is one of the largest, most difficult airlifts in history, and the only country in the world capable of projecting this much power on the far side of the world with this degree of precision is the United States of America,” he said proudly.
According to foreign policy/national security reporter Tom Rogan, a U.S. general has tried to pressure a British counterpart to stop conducting rescue operations outside of the airport perimeter because it’s making the Biden Administration look bad.
Maj. Gen. Christopher Donahue has told his British Army counterpart, a high-ranking field-grade officer of the British army’s 22nd Special Air Service Regiment, that British operations were embarrassing the United States military in the absence of similar U.S. military operations. I understand that the British officer firmly rejected the request.
– – –
Debra Heine reports for American Greatness.
Photo “Parliament” by Misko (CC BY 2.0).