2021, USA s’afegeix als derrotats a l’Afganistan

Afghanistan is tumbling into Taliban hands. “The situation on the ground is the result of two decades of miscalculations and failed policies,” writes P. Michael McKinley, former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan. “We failed in our approach to counterinsurgency, to Afghan politics, and to ‘nation building.’ We underestimated the resiliency of the Taliban. And we misread the geopolitical realities of the region.”


As the 20-year war reaches a tragic end, read more from Foreign Affairs contributors who explore how Washington and its Afghan allies lost the fight against the Taliban—and what their defeat will mean for the United States, Afghanistan, and the region.

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Biden defends ‘messy’ Afghanistan withdrawal

In an address from the White House, President Biden insisted that the U.S. mission in Afghanistan “was never supposed to have been about nation-building,” and said that there was no easy time to withdraw, even as he acknowledged that the retreat had been “hard and messy.”

“When I came into office, I inherited a deal that President Trump negotiated with the Taliban,” said Biden. “The choice I had to make as your president was either to follow through on that agreement or be prepared to go back to fighting the Taliban in the middle of the spring fighting season.” He added, “I stand squarely behind my decision.”

His unapologetic defense rallied some Democrats to his side, but the president still faces angry and increasingly public criticism from lawmakers in both parties over the chaos in Kabul. Separately, critics have blamed Afghanistan’s former president, Ashraf Ghani, for the pandemonium in Kabul, saying he has betrayed his people.

On the ground: Thousands of desperate Afghans trying to escape the Taliban takeover swarmed the airport in Kabul yesterday, mobbing the runways and even trying to cling to the fuselage of departing American military planes. Our Visual Investigations team analyzed how the government’s fall occurred.

Veterans’ response: Those who served in Afghanistan watched its collapse from the U.S. with anguish and rage. “I just can’t help thinking about what a waste it is,” one veteran said. “I can’t allow myself to think about how after all that blood and treasure, it ends like this.”

The Interpreter: How might the Taliban govern? While no two cases of insurgent rule are the same, certain patterns have repeated throughout modern history.

Afghans atop a plane at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Monday. They were trying to flee after the Taliban took over the country.Wakil Kohsar/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images