Joe Biden announced his decision of calling the American troops back from Afghanistan on Wednesday. Speaking from the White House Treaty Room, he declared that “it is time to end the forever war” as the US long ago achieved the goal of “denying terrorist a haven in the country”.
The newly appointed President Joe Biden mentioned that the conflict with Afghanistan was no more an American priority. He announced, “After nearly two decades of putting our troops in harm’s way, it is time to recognize that we have accomplished all that we can militarily, and that it’s time to bring our remaining troops home,”
He added, “We went to Afghanistan because of a horrific attack that happened 20 years ago. That cannot explain why we should remain there in 2021. Rather than return to war with the Taliban, we have to focus on the challenges that are in front of us.”
There are roughly 2500 American troops there, who will be gradually retracted from May. According to Biden, it will be done before September 11, which will be the 20th anniversary of the World Trade Center terrorist attacks. The date will also mark the anniversary of The Pentagon, which initiated the war at the first place.
Biden said, “War in Afghanistan was never meant to be a multigenerational undertaking… We were attacked. We went to war with clear goals. We achieved those objectives… Bin Laden is dead and al Qaeda is degraded in Afghanistan and it’s time to end the forever war.” The decision came as Biden determined that the Afghanistan war has cost 2300 US troops and more than $2 trillion, which no longer aligns with America’s foreign policy concerns of 2021.
The President said, “We cannot continue the cycle of extending or expanding our military presence in Afghanistan hoping to create the ideal conditions for our withdrawal, expecting a different result… I am now the fourth American president to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan. Two Republicans. Two Democrats. I will not pass this responsibility to a fifth.”
However, Biden also declared that American diplomatic and humanitarian efforts would go on in Afghanistan, and that the US would continue supporting peace efforts between the government of Afghanistan and Taliban.