The Taliban can now boast that it has driven out “two superpowers, the Soviet Union and the United States”, says Bill Roggio in the New York Post. No one in their right mind believes our “feckless” leaders have won the “phony peace process”. Since President Biden announced that he would pull American troops out of Afghanistan by 11 September, violence has skyrocketed. A vicious school bombing last week in Kabul killed more than 60 people and injured 150, most of them schoolgirls. Mullah Omar, the Taliban’s founder, predicted the US would tire of the fight. “It took two decades, but he was right.”
It’s not only Afghans who will suffer. “The endless jihad will continue, unchecked.” And China, Russia, Iran and others are taking note of our “defeat”. America’s exit is a PR boost for al-Qaeda and its terrorist training camps, which have never really left Afghanistan. I don’t blame US voters for turning on “forever wars” – years of underfunding meant we could never win. But we must face the expensive mess we’ve made. Worse, we’ve seen what happens next. Just three years after the last US troops left Iraq in 2011, our troops had to go right back to deal with the Islamic State. “American leaders have yet to learn the lesson of that failure.”
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