Columns

Taliban Savages Demanded We Leave Afghanistan and Biden Obeyed, Putting Americans at Risk

U.S. peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, left, and Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban group's top political leader shack hands after signing a peace agreement between Taliban and U.S. officials in Doha, Qatar, Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Hussein Sayed)

President Joe Biden’s irresponsible and unnecessary decision to withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan is becoming the most predictable travesty of his troubled administration.

As anyone who wasn’t playing partisan politics predicted, the Taliban is retaking Afghanistan in an appalling fashion. The rapidly deteriorating situation is a humanitarian and national security tragedy.

On Thursday, the Pentagon decided to send troops to help evacuate personnel from the U.S. Embassy in Kabul and also assist at the Kabul airport. Kabul is expected to fall within a month.

The Taliban has captured nearly two-thirds of the country, including 10 provincial capitals in the last week, and now Ghazni, one of Afghanistan’s largest cities, strategically situated on the main road between Kabul and Kandahar.

While many of us predicted this debacle four months ago, Biden administration officials inexplicably did not believe the collapse would occur so quickly.

And as the Taliban’s advance could even cross international borders, our choice to retreat does not end the battle against radical Islam.  

Related: Secretary of State Blinken Calls China’s New Role in Afghanistan ‘a Positive Thing’

This is what happened after operations in Somalia; after the 1993 World Trade Center attacks; following the U.S.S. Cole tragedy in 2000; and after our erroneous 2011 withdrawal of combat forces from Iraq. When Barack Obama ignominiously pulled American troops out of Iraq a decade ago, ISIS warlords quickly terrified the world and controlled more land than any terrorist organization in history and soldiers needed to return. 

Rather than girls being educated, we will hear stories of them being barred from school and tortured by 8th-century barbarians. Liberals who supposedly care about oppressed women and children must also understand that hard-line Islamists haven’t lost their appetite for oppressing those groups.

Thanks to America’s presence and sacrifice, infant mortality dropped by half, life expectancy increased by six years, ten times more Afghan children are now in school, and women are again treated as humans. 

Do progressives, libertarians, and isolationists realize that as we demonstrate a lack of will, our enemies are watching? Many yell clichés about “forever wars” but our question is not whether the U.S. will leave a country, but whether it does so responsibly.  

A couple of thousand troops supported and trained the Afghans fighting for us against our enemies. We were stopping the country from becoming a safe haven for the terrorists who attacked us on 9/11. Now that’s changed.

Withdrawals leave America more vulnerable to terrorist threats and directly lead to the catastrophic effects we witnessed in Vietnam and now in Afghanistan. Taliban savages asked for years for American troops to leave and, unfortunately, Biden obliged. 

“Decline is a choice,” the late Charles Krauthammer once said. 

Surrender in Afghanistan is our choice. In the years prior to Biden’s announcement, casualties in the “endless war” had dwindled to a handful. Critics refuse to acknowledge that our combat role in Afghanistan ended in 2014 and no combat deaths have occurred in 18 months

We simply lost the courage to stick it out.