• Trump’s Doha Agreement only bound the United States to a „complete withdrawal of all remaining forces“ with the „commitment and action“ of the Taliban on its obligations as laid out in the accord. Those terms bound the Taliban not to „allow any of its members, other individuals or groups, including al-Qaeda, to use the soil of Afghanistan to threaten the security of the United States and its allies,“ as well as „not to cooperate with groups or individuals threatening the security of the United States and its allies,“ and to „prevent any group or individual in Afghanistan from threatening the security of the United States and its allies.“
  • Even prior to the final assaults on Kabul and the suicide bombings at Hamid Karzai International Airport, it was clear the Taliban was neck-deep in a proxy relationship with al-Qaeda via its relationship with the Haqqani network. Once again, the information that should have led to a pause and a hard-nosed assessment of how to complete the withdrawal in an orderly, safe way was ignored to meet a political deadline.
  • Instead, the Afghan men who helped the U.S., the women who breathed freedom for the first time, the military veterans from the U.S. and its allies who fought and died there all feel a sense of abandonment and frustration at this endgame incompetence. Those in the government who continue to hunt terrorist jihadis have lost their sources, bases of operation, and ability to quick-strike military targets that a resurgent al-Qaeda will now present there.

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