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'Greatest Tactical Mistake in History': Donald Trump Slams Joe Biden for 'Surrendering' to Taliban

Former US President Donald Trump accused Biden of surrendering to the Taliban and asked whether he will apologise for the "greatest tactical mistake" in history. (File photo/Reuters)

Former US President Donald Trump accused Biden of surrendering to the Taliban and asked whether he will apologise for the "greatest tactical mistake" in history. (File photo/Reuters)

In a statement, Trump accused Biden of surrendering to the Taliban and asked whether he will apologise for the "greatest tactical mistake" in history.

Former US president Donald Trump has slammed his successor President Joe Biden of failing on Afghan policy and accused him for leaving Americans behind as the Taliban continued to capture cities and provinces in Afghanistan. In a statement, Trump accused Biden of surrendering to the Taliban and asked whether he will apologise for the “greatest tactical mistake” in history as he pulled out US military before the Americans from the war-torn country.

“Afghanistan under Biden was not a withdrawal, it was a surrender. Will he apologize for the greatest tactical mistake in history, pulling the Military out before our citizens? Leaving Americans behind for death is an unforgivable dereliction of duty, which will go down in infamy,” Hindustan Times quoted Trump as saying in a statement.

Earlier in such a statement, Trump had said, “The Taliban no longer has fear or respect for America, or America’s power. What a disgrace it will be when the Taliban raises their flag over America’s Embassy in Kabul. This is a complete failure through weakness, incompetence, and total strategic incoherence.”

Hours after the president announced deployment of 5,000 US troops in Afghanistan, Trump had said that Biden gets it wrong every time on foreign policy and many other issues. Everyone knew he couldn’t handle the pressure. Even Obama’s Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, said as much, he said.

He ran out of Afghanistan instead of following the plan our Administration left for him a plan that protected our people and our property, and ensured the Taliban would never dream of taking our Embassy or providing a base for new attacks against America. The withdrawal would be guided by facts on the ground, Trump said. After I took out ISIS, I established a credible deterrent. That deterrent is now gone, he had said.

Facing a torrent of criticism at home and abroad for his handling of the withdrawal and the subsequent swift Taliban takeover, Biden on Friday said every American who wanted to would be evacuated, and that about 18,000 people had been airlifted out since July.

“I have seen no question of our credibility from our allies,” Biden told reporters after making a speech from the White House. “… I have not seen that. As a matter of fact, the exact opposite I’ve got … we’re acting with dispatch, we’re acting, committing to what we said we would do.”

US evacuation flights from Kabul’s airport had stopped for more than six hours on Friday while US authorities looked for countries willing to accept people fleeing Afghanistan, but they resumed later in the day.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg described the situation outside Kabul airport as “very dire and difficult,” as several member countries pressed for evacuations to continue beyond Biden’s August 31 deadline.

Biden said he could not predict what the final outcome would be in Afghanistan, where the United States and has led a 20-year war with its allies. But he promised to work with other countries to set “harsh conditions” for any cooperation or recognition of the Taliban, based on their human rights record.

“They’re looking to gain some legitimacy, they’re going to have to figure out how they’re going to retain that country,” he said. “And there’s going to be some harsh conditions, strong conditions we’re going to apply that will depend on … how well they treat women and girls, how they treat their citizens.”

Thousands of desperate Afghans clutching papers, children and some belongings thronged Kabul airport where gun-toting Taliban members urged those without travel documents to go home. In and around the airport, at least 12 people have been killed since Sunday, NATO and Taliban officials said.

(with inputs from Reuters and PTI)

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first published:August 21, 2021, 18:54 IST