President Joe Biden (Photo by Adam Schultz)
President Joe Biden (Photo by Adam Schultz)

Following the departure of American troops on President Biden’s orders, the Taliban have regained control of many major cities in Afghanistan and have wreaked havoc in the country. 

By Friday morning, they have gained control of Kandahar, Herat and Lashkar Gah and the government is near collapse. It is expected that they will also conquer Kabul in the coming weeks, which has led the US to send 3,000 troops to evacuate the United States Embassy from Afghanistan as soon as possible. 

A White House official told The Pavlovic Today that on Saturday morning , the President and Vice President held a secure video conference with the national security team “to discuss the ongoing efforts to drawdown our civilian footprint in Afghanistan, evacuate SIV applicants, and monitor the evolving security situation.”

The President and Vice President were joined by the Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Chief of Staff, National Security Advisor, and Homeland Security Advisor. 

With the speed and force the Taliban are working with, only three Afghan cities remain belonging to the Afghan government and they are expected to fall within a month to the hands of the Taliban. 

“Sporadic clashes happened last night, but no serious resistance was reported,” said Gul Zaman Naeb, a member of Ghor Province’s Parliament. “When the people woke up this morning, they saw Taliban fighters in the streets and government offices.”

In fact, a Biden Administration State Department official quickly deleted a tweet she posted warning that Afghan women “stand to lose everything” as the Taliban surges toward Kabul.

The Biden administration is working towards evacuating the thousands of American citizens and Afghan interpreters who reside in Afghanistan during the attacks. 

A reporter asked Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby, ??”What’s it going to say for a 20-year war in Afghanistan if it ends with the Taliban rolling into Kabul in US-made MRAPs and Humvees and carrying weapons that our allies turned over to them?” during a press briefing. 

“I can’t see the future,” Kirby responded. “And what I can tell you is our troops who deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11 did what they were sent there to do, which is to prevent Afghanistan from being a safe haven for terrorist attacks upon the homeland and to severely degrade the capabilities of groups like al Qaeda.”

He was also asked if the Taliban are open to negotiations or incentives which will lead them to stop their invasions and violence in the country. He responded, “I think that’s a question for Taliban leaders to speak to.

While some politicians and White House staff are hopeful about Biden’s plan to evacuate Americans and help Afghan refugees and people, many are accusing him of not doing enough or reacting to the attacks too late. 

House Foreign Affairs Committee Lead Republican Michael McCaul has released the following statement on the Biden Administration’s decision to evacuate personnel from the U.S. Embassy in Kabul and to send in 3,000 additional U.S. troops to assist with that evacuation.

“Evacuating many of our personnel from Embassy Kabul is deeply disappointing, but highly predictable. While many at the State Department and within the White House have publicly painted a rosy picture, the IC has consistently had a grimmer and more realistic assessment of the situation – an assessment President Biden flatly denied just one month ago. For months, I have warned the president that he needed to take steps to mitigate the fallout from his ill-advised decision to completely withdraw from Afghanistan. Instead, his administration put all their hopes in peace negotiations that have not delivered any results. President Biden’s lack of leadership has enabled the deteriorating situation on the ground in Afghanistan. He will be abandoning our Afghan partners and the women of Afghanistan to be slaughtered – and he will own the horrific images that come from it.”

Another popular leader to voice their opinion is former President Donald Trump. 

“Had our 2020 Presidential Election not been rigged, and if I were now President, the world would find that our withdrawal from Afghanistan would be a conditions-based withdrawal. I personally had discussions with top Taliban leaders whereby they understood what they are doing now would not have been acceptable. It would have been a much different and much more successful withdrawal, and the Taliban understood that better than anyone. What is going on now is not acceptable. It should have been done much better.”

President Biden and foreign ambassadors and officials will continue working on a plan to save Afghanistan from the violent and abhorrent Taliban rule, who are also targeting women and children. Americans are responding as social media platforms are swelling up with posts, tweets, pictures, and donation links to help those in need. 

Due to the violent attacks, nearly 4 million Afghans are internally displaced, half of them immigrating to Kabul which will most likely be hit by the Taliban very soon. 19 million are in urgent need of humanitarian help. 

Women and children make up about half of civilian casualties. Last week, the International Rescue Committee announced Afghanistan as the deadliest country to be a civilian due to the 19 million people directly affected by war. 

Anoosha Murtaza is a Gen Z Voice at the Pavlovic Today and a rising third-year student at the University of Virginia. Anoosha has a passion for good journalism, strong political views, and social justice. 

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