President Biden's claim on July 8 that the US "did not go to Afghanistan to nation-build" and that it had accomplished its objectives there of killing Osama bin Laden and undercutting al-Qaeda's ability to launch more attacks on the United States recalls President Bush's broader objective "to build a stable, strong, effectively governed Afghanistan that won't degenerate into chaos", or President Obama's narrower objective of "preventing Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for global terrorism". The irony is that Osama was killed not in Afghanistan but in Pakistan a decade after the US attacked Afghanistan, and for merely "undercutting" al-Qaeda, the US has spent over a trillion dollars and lost over 2,400 soldiers in over 20 years. The real safe haven responsible for Taliban's resurgence that has forced a US retreat from Afghanistan is Pakistan, and that Biden has ignored. Not only that, for him to say that "terrorism is not emanating from that part of the world" shows an unwillingness to adequately recognise Pakistan's jihadi terrorist affiliations even now. For Biden to say that the Afghan people needed to dictate their own future is a recognition that the US could not dictate the future of Afghanistan despite its enormous… Read full this story
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