President Joe Biden has made arrangements to return to the White House from a Camp David retreat Monday in order to address the crisis in Afghanistan. Biden is expected to deliver remarks at 3:45p.m. Eastern from the East Room, he tweeted Monday.
The Taliban has toppled all major provincial capitals in Afghanistan, now controls the majority of the country, and has declared victory by announcing “The War is over.” Chaotic scenes erupt in Afghanistan where “crowds converged on the airport seeking to escape, including some clinging to a U.S. military transport plane as it taxied on the runway” reports Reuters.
A U.S. officials said U.S. troops have fired in the air to deter people trying to force their way onto military flights evacuating U.S. diplomats and embassy staff. “The Taliban’s rapid conquest of Kabul follows U.S. President Joe Biden’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces after 20 years of war that cost billions of dollars” reports Reuters.
“The speed at which Afghan cities fell in just days and fear of a Taliban crackdown on freedom of speech and women’s rights gained over 20 years have sparked criticism” adds Reuters. Jim Messina, a White House deputy chief of staff in the Obama administration defended Biden’s actions. “We’ve been there 20 years. It’s America’s longest-running war, it is time to get out” he told Fox. “Why should American troops be fighting a civil war that Afghan troops this week refused to fight for themselves, it was time to get out” added Messina.
It was not immediately clear how the people died at the airport. A U.S. official said troops had fired in the air to deter people trying to force their way on to a military flight that was set to take U.S. diplomats and embassy staff out of the city. More: https://t.co/6QYsviT7Tz pic.twitter.com/0EEVTyjvPp
— Reuters (@Reuters) August 16, 2021