On Tuesday, the Biden administration scrambled to put Afghanistan’s poor evacuation back on track, as it admitted that after a day of chaos and violence at Kabul International Airport, its original plan needed to be changed.
Attempting to quickly project ability after the Taliban Controlled the country Faced with the crumbling Afghan army, the White House stated that it has ensured the security of the airport and will speed up the pace of evacuation in the next few days.
President Joe Biden’s national security adviser Jack Sullivan told reporters that the government has “clearly seen” the risk of Islamic organizations “ultimately controlling Afghanistan,” but admitted that “we did not expect it to happen at such a rapid rate.” “It did it.
“there is Chaotic scene [on Monday]but. .. Even well-designed plans cannot survive the first contact with reality. They need to be adjusted, and we have made these adjustments,” Sullivan added.
However, after two years of war, the government insisted on its decision to withdraw troops from the country, fulfilling the promise Biden made during the campaign last year. Biden called for the withdrawal of troops for the first time when he was vice president. The Obama administration.
Sullivan said that the images of people clutching a U.S. military plane when taking off from Kabul Airport and in some cases falling from it were “heartbreaking.” But he added: “President Biden must also consider the human cost of another path, that is, staying in the middle of the internal conflict in Afghanistan.”
Sullivan said that just hours after the Taliban leader successfully addressed a group of Afghan journalists in the country’s capital, US officials are directly discussing with the Taliban to ensure the safety of civilians seeking to enter the airport.
He said that the government “received reports that people were “turned out” by the Taliban and “even beaten”. The United States is trying to resolve these issues through secret channels with the Islamic organization. “We are worried about this situation in the next few days. Will it continue to happen,” Sullivan added.
But he insisted that “as far as the current situation is concerned, we find that we are letting people through the gate.”
The Taliban stated that they will not retaliate against government officials or Afghan soldiers. The organization will respect Women’s rights are “within the scope of Islamic law”. The last time the Taliban came to power, they ruled Afghanistan with a cruel interpretation of Islam, which largely deprived women of their rights.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Pentagon stated that by the end of Tuesday, there will be about 4,000 soldiers on the ground in Kabul, and a U.S. Air Force C-17 aircraft will bring about 1,000 U.S. soldiers to Hamid Karzai International Airport overnight. .
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told reporters that the pace of evacuation will now accelerate. 700 to 800 people were evacuated overnight, of which 165 were American citizens, and the rest were a mixture of Afghan visa holders and other nationalities.
He added that the scale of evacuation could reach 5,000 to 9,000 people per day.
Kirby said that the airport has not had hostile interaction with the Taliban, and the airport is still safe. However, as shown in a video widely shared on the Internet, he declined to provide the number of casualties caused by people clinging to the outside of the plane when the American plane took off.
Biden’s senior adviser spoke to the media on Tuesday, and the president is still in the rural resort of Camp David. On Monday, the president briefly returned to the White House to resolve the ongoing crisis.
“I firmly support my decision,” Biden said. Defensive His government withdrew its troops from Afghanistan. “I learned from the painful lessons that it is never a good time to withdraw troops.”
Biden has faced criticism from the party for the government’s handling of the issue of the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. The New York Times reported that the US spy agency warned this summer that although Biden and his advisers have repeatedly ensured that the Afghan army has the resources and willingness to fight, it may quickly collapse.
In response to questions about these intelligence reports, Sullivan said: “I am actually not familiar with the intelligence assessment you describe, but I don’t want to get involved in specific intelligence products.”
Senior Democratic congressmen have promised to hold congressional hearings to investigate why the United States is not better prepared for an orderly withdrawal from Afghanistan.
The Democratic Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Bob Menendez, said on Tuesday that he was “disappointed” by the government’s lack of understanding of the impact of the rapid U.S. withdrawal. He also accused former President Donald Trump of a “completely inadequate agreement” with the Taliban.
“We are now witnessing the terrible results of years of policy and intelligence failures,” Menendez said in a statement.
The Democratic Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Jack Reed, also said that he will order a hearing on “what went wrong”, but avoid shirking responsibility.
The Democratic Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mark Warner, also called on Congress to investigate. He said: “We should provide these answers to the American people and all those who serve and sacrifice for them.”
Additional report by Stephanie Findlay in New Delhi