Joe Biden gifting Afghanistan to the Taliban is a crime against humanity
IN 20 days, it will be exactly 20 years since someone phoned you and said, “Turn on your television now.”
Twenty years since those planes came out of a clear blue sky and ploughed into the Twin Towers.
Twenty years since the world watched 3,000 innocent men, women and children — never forget the children on those hijacked planes — murdered on live television.
On every anniversary of September 11, 2001, we have remembered, mourned and felt the lingering shock of what we witnessed.
But this 20th anniversary of 9/11 will be very different from the rest.
Because for the first time in 20 years, it feels like the West is losing.
President Joe Biden’s cack-handed, chaotic retreat from Afghanistan is an historic act of self-harm by America.
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Biden has given jihadists everywhere what the head of MI5, Ken McCallum, calls “a victory narrative”.
Biden has explicitly told the men of violence: You can win.
Overture to horror
From Kabul to the cities of the West, terrorists have been given a vibrant new lease of life, not least in Afghanistan’s nextdoor neighbour, Pakistan, with its nuclear arsenal.
Brutal authoritarian regimes — China and Russia and Iran — will be emboldened by Biden’s self-centred cowardice.
Twenty years of struggle and sacrifice, two decades of lost lives and limbs — and for what?
Thanks to Sleepy Joe’s abject surrender to the Taliban, we are no safer today than when those planes ploughed into the World Trade Center in downtown New York.
Right now, jihadists are contemplating images of the bright shining tower that replaced the twin towers and wondering how they can reduce it to smouldering rubble.
Biden has debased himself before the Taliban.
He has not made America safe. He has not made the world safe.
Only a man as congenitally thick as Biden — or indeed Donald Trump, who struck the original deal to gift wrap Afghanistan for the Taliban — could imagine anything has ended.
The scenes we are witnessing now — babies thrown over the razor wire at Kabul airport by their desperate parents, the Taliban carrying out door-to-door manhunts for those who worked for NATO, brutal whippings administered as casually as parking tickets — are an overture to horror that will last beyond all of our lifetimes.
Biden has been reckless beyond belief. Despite all the woke pieties of his administration, despite all the simpering clichés about the rights of women spouted by Vice President Kamala Harris, this American President just pimped 20million women and girls to an army of medieval, women-hating misogynists.
Biden has single-handedly created Europe’s next refugee crisis. Millions will flee Afghanistan looking for lives of basic human dignity.
And as the Taliban always rely on the Afghan opium trade as a major source of income, expect to see cheap heroin flooding the West very soon.
Biden has thrown away everything that has been fought for over the last 20 years.
Remember, remember. We were in Afghanistan because after 9/11 its Taliban rulers refused to hand over Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaeda mastermind they were sheltering.
Some say we were insane to invade Afghanistan in the first place because it has been the graveyard for empires for centuries.
Rudyard Kipling’s A Young British Soldier, a poem about a British infantryman dying on Afghan’s plains, was written in 1895.
But it worked. An imperfect peace has been in place for 20 years. Girls have gone to school.
The Taliban have squatted in their distant caves, scratching their beards.
The body bags of British and American troops stopped coming home years ago.
The US and Nato formally ended their combat role in Afghanistan at the end of 2014.
The Afghan forces — slandered by Biden as cowards — have done the fighting since then.
The status quo in Afghanistan was achieved with just 2,500 American troops and 750 Brits, all in non-combat support roles — 2,500 is less personnel than the staff in the US Embassy in London!
It is stark raving insane that a mountain of human misery has been created because an American President would not pay such a pitifully small, sustainable price.
America has 55,000 troops in Japan who have been there since 1945.
America has had 28,500 sailors, airmen and Marines in South Korea since 1953.
The US has 320,000 military personnel in Europe. Afghanistan enjoyed peace and freedom with a tiny fraction of these numbers.
And now Joe Biden has thrown away a country it took 20 years to build.
Afghanistan was not a “forever war” as Biden calls it, that Commander in Chief who never heard a shot fired in anger, that White House warrior whose asthma kept him far from the Vietnam War when — like draft-swervers Trump, Clinton and Bush — he was the perfect age to fight for his country.
Afghanistan had an enduring peace that had been fought for over two decades.
And now it has been flushed away by an America that looks weaker, less caring and more insular than the great country that fought by our side in the world wars of the 20th Century.
“America is back!” Joe Biden has boasted.
Yes, back home, doors locked and quivering with fear of the outside world.
“President Biden failed to answer the fundamental question,” wrote Afghan author Khaled Hosseini. “What will America do about Afghanistan’s looming humanitarian crisis? Who will protect the men, women and children left behind?”
The answers are painfully obvious.
Nothing — that’s what America will do about the tide of human misery about to be unleashed.
Nobody — that’s who will protect the 39million Afghans so cruelly abandoned to the grinning rapists, murderers and torturers of the Taliban.
And how heartbreaking to hear our veterans — and the families that mourn the ones who never came home — ask that hard question that has tormented them all week and will torment them for ever.
“Was it worth it?” wondered British veteran Jack Cummings, a bomb disposal expert who lost his legs in Afghanistan.
“Probably not. Did I lose my legs for nothing? Looks like it. Did my mates die in vain? Yep. On my 11th Bangaversary, it’s a very sombre one. Many emotions going through my head — anger, betrayal, sadness to name a few.”
But heroes like Jack Cummings did not fail.
They fought for their freedom, and they did not falter, even if those freedoms have been squandered by Joe Biden.
For 20 years, Afghanistan — despite the corruption of its government — has been more free than at any time in its history.
The Taliban were chased back to their caves. Osama bin Laden is ten years dead.
Al-Qaeda was routed. There has not been another terrorist attack that came near to matching the fatalities of 9/11.
In 2001, the number of Afghan girls in education was zero. If the schools close to girls again, it will not be the fault of the men and women who fought in Afghanistan.
But today it feels horribly like we are back to where we were 20 years ago.
The Taliban are once again swaggering around Kabul.
Women are second-class citizens, scarcely considered human, their rights and safety totally dependent on the whim of murdering fanatics.
Afghanistan will once more be a finishing school for terrorists, the Oxbridge of jihad, just as it was when Osama bin Laden was under the Taliban’s care, dreaming of raining blood and fire on the infidels.
It’s not over
Twenty years to get to this point after all those lives lost, all that money spent, and all that human suffering.
There is grand talk about doing the right thing by Afghanistan. Get out the brave Afghans who helped us? Protect women and girls?
Bring our citizens home? Give a home to thousands of those desperate Afghan refugees?
But we are still struggling to accept that absolutely everything in that country is now at the whim of the Taliban.
Even letting British passport holders get on a plane. It is the Taliban who call the shots now.
It’s not over, of course. It will not be over for decades.
And to those who say we should never have gone into Afghanistan I would gently remind them that we fought them over there so that we did not have to fight them over here.
But now we will. Afghanistan’s greatest export will be terror.
What began on September 11, 2001, is not done.
Future historians will look back and declare the horror was just getting started when America lost the will to preserve peace in Afghanistan.
All those heavily armed fanatics render Afghanistan a slaughterhouse in waiting, not least because there are brave souls in Afghanistan, many of them women, who will not easily surrender the precious freedoms of the last 20 years.
Men like Jack Cummings who fought for freedom — for the West, for Afghanistan, for the world — should feel proud today. They did not fail.
They have been failed by a doddering political pygmy.
Joe Biden’s unilateral abandonment of Afghanistan is not just a craven, reckless retreat that insults America’s forgotten Nato allies.
Gifting Afghanistan to the Taliban is a crime against humanity.
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