08.10.2021

Experts Discuss U.S. Withdrawal from Afghanistan

The U.S. is almost out of Afghanistan and the Taliban is moving in with rapid speed. The fundamentalist group’s offensive is happening much faster than feared, as it claims it has now taken over its seventh provincial capital in five days. To discuss the U.S. withdrawal and the Taliban advances, NATO’s former head joins the show, alongside Pakistan’s former ambassador in D.C.

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SO LET ME ASK YOU, WHO MONITORED OR OVERSAW SO MANY TROOPS THERE.

IS THIS A GAMBLE THAT YOU THINK WILL PAY OFF?

WHAT DO YOU THINK RIGHT NOW WHEN YOU HEAR THE BURDEN BEING PUT ON THE AFGHAN FORCES AS THE TALIBAN IS SWEEPING UP TERRITORY SHORTLY BEFORE THE U.S. PULLS ITS FINAL SOLDIER OUT?

WELL I THINK THE OBJECTIVE OF THIS DECISION IS RIGHT.

BUT THE TIMING IS WRONG.

THE OBJECTIVE IS RIGHT BECAUSE WE SHOULD LEAVE IT TO THE AFGHANS TO DECIDE THE FUTURE OF AFGHANISTAN.

WE SHOULDN'T BE THERE FOREVER.

IT IS NOT AN OCCUPATION FORCE.

BUT WE SHOULD HAVE TOLD THE TALIBAN WE WOULD LEAVE BUT NOT UNTIL YOU STOP THE ATTACKS ON THE LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT.

AND THE MISTAKE WAS TO APPROVE SO CALLED PEACE DEAL WHERE THE UNITED STATES PROMISED TO LEAVE AFGHANISTAN ON A CERTAIN DATE.

BECAUSE THE TALIBAN JUST WAITED US OUT AND THAT'S WHAT WE ARE WITNESSING NOW.

-- AND THAT'S WHY THE TIMING IS WRONG.

SO LET ME TURN TO YOU AMBASSADOR.

WHO HAS A HUGE EXPERIENCE, AT LEAST YOUR COUNTRY, WITH WHAT THE TALIBAN ARE UP TO.

DO YOU AGREE IT IS THE WRONG TIME?

AND HOW DID THE UNITED STATES GET HOODWINKED INTO ALLOWING THE TALIBAN TO SIMPLY CONTINUE WITHOUT MAKING ANY OF THE PROMISES AND COMMITMENTS SECRETARY RASMUSSEN IS TALKING ABOUT?

FIRST OF ALL LOT IS SAID ABOUT AMERICA'S LONGEST WAR BUT THE TRUTH IS AMERICA NEVER PLANNED TO STAY IN AFGHANISTAN FOR 20 YEARS.

INSTEAD WHAT WE HAD WERE TWENTY ONE-YEAR PLANS AND THIS IS THE LATEST OF IT.

LET'S TURN IT OVER TO THE AFGHAN GOVERNMENT WITHOUT TALKING TO THE AFGHAN GOVERNMENT ABOUT WHAT WERE ITS NEEDS AND HOW IT WOULD TAKE OVER THE FIGHTING FROM NATO TROOPS.

AS FAR AS THE AFGHAN GOVERNMENT'S ABILITY TO WITHSTAND THE TALIBAN PRESSURE IS CONCERNED I THINK WE WILL SEE A STIFFENING OF RESOLVE IN KABUL AND PEOPLE OF AFGHANISTAN WILL RESIST THE TALIBAN.

BUT FROM THE AMERICAN PERSPECTIVE, IT WAS A MISTAKE TO PROLONG THE WAR WITHOUT A PLAN.

AND IT WAS A MISTAKE TO RELY ON PAKISTAN THE WAY THE RELIANCE WAS HAD.

AND LASTLY, AS THE MISTAKE TO LEAVE WITHOUT MAKING TRANSITIONAL ARRANGEMENTS AS THE SECRETARY GENERAL SAID, ALLOWING THE TALIBAN TO WAIT THE WITHDRAWAL OUT.

About This Episode EXPAND

Andrea Stewart-Cousins, majority leader of the New York State Senate, weighs in on Gov. Cuomo’s resignation. Anders Fogh-Rasmussen and Husain Haqqani discuss U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and Taliban advances. Pulitzer Prize-winner Louis Menand discusses his new book “The Free World: Art and Thought in the Cold War.” Actress Cecily Strong reflects on her career and new memoir.

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