Report: Taliban offered to let U.S. take control of Kabul, but Biden team said we only needed the airport

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KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – In yet another shocking development in Afghanistan, U.S. military leaders and the Biden administration turned down an offer by the Taliban to remain outside of Kabul until the withdrawal was complete.

As the Afghan President fled the country, military leaders inside and outside Afghanistan were caught off guard. The plan was for President Ashraf Ghani to remain in control until an interim government could be formed.

Even U.S. intelligence estimated that the Taliban could not pose a threat to the Afghan government for months after the U.S. withdrawal.

But as the Taliban made progress toward control of the country, Ghani fled, throwing the government into chaos. Most of the Afghan security forces deserted and left their posts. Afghan and American citizens found themselves struggling to escape the country.

President Biden told advisers that the United States would hold to an August 31 deadline to have all military forces out of the country. Aware of this stance, U.S. military leaders including U.S. Central Commander General Kenneth F. McKenzie, Jr. quickly arraigned a meeting in Doha with Abdul Ghani Baradar, head of the Taliban’s political wing.

At the meeting, Baradar made an offer:

“We have a problem. We have two options to deal with it: You [the United States military] take responsibility for securing Kabul or you have to allow us to do it.”

Holding to the policy of President Biden, McKenzie told Baradar that the United States mission was only to evacuate American citizens, Afghan allies, and others deemed at-risk. McKenzie said the U.S. needed the airport to complete the mission.

So rather than taking full control of Kabul until the withdrawal and evacuations were complete, the United States agreed only to control the airport until August 31, not the city.

With the Afghan president gone and the United States refusing to control the city, the Taliban moved in. The Taliban have said they did not intend on moving into Kabul that soon, but said they were left with no choice.

A message intercepted from Taliban commander Muhammad Nasir Haqqani’s phone read:

“The government has left all of their ministries; you have to enter the city to prevent further disorder and protect public property and services from chaos.”

Haqqani reported being surprised after leading Taliban fighters through the gates into Kabul. He said, “We didn’t see a single soldier or police.”

Becoming aware the Afghan government had collapsed, Haqqani took control of Kabul and reached the palace by late afternoon:

“We couldn’t control our emotions; we were so happy. Most of our fighters were crying. We never thought we would take Kabul so quickly.”

As the Taliban celebrated, American citizens, Afghan citizens friendly to the United States, and other foreign allies were trapped in a city controlled by the enemy.

Over the next few days, the American withdrawal crumbled into chaos and despair. Many could not get past Taliban checkpoints, despite being U.S. citizens or Afghans with proper documentation to enter the airport.

The chaos culminated in a suicide bombing outside the airport last week that killed and 13 U.S. Marines and 160 Afghans.

The President allowed the Taliban to control Kabul and provided them with a list of names of American citizens, green card holders, and Afghan allies in the region.

President Biden defended any decision to supply the list of names, saying:

“There have been occasions where our military has contacted their military counterparts in the Taliban and said, for example, ‘This bus is coming through with X number of people on it made up of the following group of people. We want you to let that bus or that group through.’

“So, yes. There have been occasions like that, and to the best of my knowledge, in those cases, when the bulk of that has occurred,  they have been let through. But I can’t tell you with any servitude that there has actually been a list of names. There may have been, but I know of no circumstance. That doesn’t mean it didn’t exist.”

Under the President’s blessings, the U.S. military handed control of Kabul to the Taliban, an enemy that America has been fighting for almost 20 years. They then handed a list of names to the Taliban of people who supported the United States during the war, essentially handing them a kill list.

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“Mr. Biden, you did this! You planned this!” British citizens blocked from evacuation by Taliban in Afghanistan

August 26, 2021

 

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – Americans are not the only ones trapped inside Afghanistan by President Biden’s failed withdrawal. British citizens and passport holders are being blocked from escape by Taliban fighters.

ITV News Senior International Correspondent John Irvine published a shocking story detailing the fear and panic as thousands of Brits and Afghans holding British passports are turned away from the temporary British Embassy by Taliban rifles being fired into the air.

No reason has been offered by the Taliban as to why the Brits have been kept away from the Embassy, and one man with a British passport begged Prime Minister Boris Johnson for help:

“Just get us out of here.

“I’m a British citizen, my kids are British and they’re stuck here. They (the Taliban) closed the door on us and they’re shooting back at us”.

The man questioned why the British army could not help them:

“Our kids are struggling and we’re all in a big mess here. The British Army is right behind these fences, they’ve closed the gate and they’re not letting (anyone) in.”

Reports coming out of Afghanistan say that some evacuation flights leaving the country have been forced to depart only partially full because of those unable to make it to the airport.

In a heartbreaking example of the chaos enveloping the country, one man was caring for two young children left behind when their parents made it inside the airport. The man placed the blame for the disastrous situation squarely on President Joe Biden:

“Mr. Biden, you did this. You planned this. You made the deal with the Taliban.

“This is the consequences of it. This is the repercussions of it. Mr. Biden, it’s your ill-calculation. You were against Trump, now we’re against you.”

He added:

“Go to Hell, Biden.”

The man may have been referring to the recent revelation that the Trump administration provided an evacuation plan to President Biden when he took office, but that he discarded it.

In a statement earlier this month, Donald Trump criticized Biden’s withdrawal:

“Can anyone even imagine taking out our military before evacuating civilians and others who have been good to our country and who should be allowed to seek refuge? In addition, these people left topflight and highly sophisticated equipment.

“Who can believe such incompetence? Under my Administration, all civilians and equipment would have been removed.”

Another shocking example of the inability of nations to evacuate their people from Afghanistan after the Taliban surged into power following the withdrawal of U.S. forces came from Paralympian Zakia Khudadadi.

Khudadadi was scheduled to become the first female athlete to represent Afghanistan at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. The rise of the Taliban has destroyed those hopes and left her scrambling outside Kabul Airport stranded with thousands more.

The British ambassador to Afghanistan claimed the evacuation of Kabul is “gathering pace,” with 5,725 people evacuated since August 13. But the British military on Sunday reported that seven Afghan civilians were killed outside the airport.

Prime Minister Johnson called a meeting of the leaders of the G7 on Tuesday to discuss the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan:

“It is vital that the international community works together to ensure safe evacuations, prevent a humanitarian crisis, and support the Afghan people to secure the gains of the last 20 years.”

President Biden told the G7 leaders at the meeting that he would keep the August 31 deadline for having full U.S. forces withdrawn from the country:

“We are currently on pace to finish by August the 31. In addition, I’ve asked the Pentagon and the State Department for contingency plans to adjust the timetable should that become necessary.”

The deadline leaves the fate of thousands trapped inside the country in question. The President justified sticking to the deadline by suggesting terrorists might exploit any delay at the airport:

“Every day we’re on the ground is another day we know that ISIS-K is seeking to target the airport and attack both U.S. and allied forces and innocent civilians.”
 

 

 

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