By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
(Worthy News) – Frail appearing U.S. President Joe Biden made clear Tuesday he would obey Afghanistan’s new Islamist Taliban rulers and withdraw American forces from the nation by the end of the month.
Biden told reporters that keeping the August 31 deadline was needed amid a threat of militant attacks on U.S. troops.
The Taliban had warned that an extension of the U.S. military presence would “provoke a reaction.”
Though his nation has the world’s most powerful army, Biden said he feared there were too many risks involved in staying longer. “The longer we stay, starting with the acute and growing risk of an attack by a terrorist group known as ISIS-K, which is a sworn enemy of the Taliban as well,” he stressed.
“Every day that we’re on the ground is another day we know that ISIS-K is seeking to target the airport and attack both U.S. and allied forces and innocent civilians.”
But he left somewhat open the chance of the deadline being extended, though he told Group of Seven (G7) countries earlier Tuesday that the deadline remains in place
“I’ve asked the Pentagon and the State Department for contingency plans to adjust the timetable should that become necessary,” Biden added in comments from the White House.
His controversial comments came after two U.S. officials confirmed a meeting between the director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Taliban.
CIA Director William Burns and Taliban leader Abdul Ghani Baradar met in Kabul on Monday to discuss the chaos in Afghanistan after the Taliban’s unexpectedly swift takeover, the officials said.
There were mounting concerns among U.S. allies that thousands of Afghans who risked their lives for the U.S.-led coalition will be left behind.
The Taliban announced Tuesday that no Afghan nationals would be allowed to enter Kabul’s international airport.
Additionally, Americans were trapped prompting White House press secretary Jen Psaki to ask reporters for help. “If we are not in touch with this individual, give me their contact information, and we’ll get in touch with them. If any of you are hearing from American citizens who can’t reach us, give me their contact information, and we will get in contact with them,” she said.
Analysts say that the president’s allies fear he will lose the confidence of the moderate swing voters who lifted his party to victory in 2020.
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