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George W. Bush warns US withdrawal from Afghanistan will have ‘unbelievably bad’ consequences

Former US president George W. Bush has issued a rare public warning, saying one of Joe Biden’s decisions will have “unspeakable” consequences. Former US president George W. Bush has labeled America’s decision to withdraw its military forces from Afghanistan a “mistake”, saying it will lead to “unbelievably bad” consequences.

Mr. Bush was the President who took the US to war in Afghanistan after the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001. Now, 20 years later, the US and its allies are leaving.

In an interview with the German news broadcaster Deutsche Welle, published today, Mr. Bush was asked to reflect on Germany’s outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel, who’s been in power since 2005.

At one point, he brought up Afghanistan, saying Ms. Merkel “saw the progress that could be made” for women and girls in the country through the West’s involvement.

George W. Bush

“It’s unbelievable how that society changed from the brutality of the Taliban,” he said.

“And now, all of a sudden, sadly, I’m afraid Afghan women and girls will suffer unspeakable harm.”

“Is it a mistake to withdraw?” asked interviewer Ines Pohl.

“You know, I think it is, yeah. Because I think the consequences will be unbelievably bad,” said Mr. Bush.

“And I’m sad. Laura and I spend a lot of time with Afghan women, and they’re scared. And I think about all the interpreters and people who helped not only US troops but NATO troops, and it seems like they’re just going to be left behind to be slaughtered by these ruthless people. And it breaks my heart.”

Coincidentally, today the Biden administration announced it would start evacuation flights for Afghans who aided the US military in the last week of July. The flights, organized as part of Operation Allies Refuge, are available for Afghans eligible to apply for special immigrant visas.

In April, President Joe Biden set September 11 as the deadline for all US troops to leave Afghanistan, precisely two decades after the terrorist attacks that prompted America’s invasion.

“We cannot continue the cycle of extending or expanding our military presence in Afghanistan, hoping to create the ideal conditions for our withdrawal, expecting a different result,” he said.

“It is time to end America’s longest war. It is time for American troops to come home.”

The President promised America’s “diplomatic and humanitarian work” in Afghanistan would continue, even without military involvement. When Mr. Biden issued that order, there were officially 2500 troops and 16,000 private contractors still in Afghanistan. According to reports, some 1000 special forces troops were operating in the country who were not included in the tally.

Mr. Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, previously struck a deal with the Taliban for US troops to leave by May 1. The Biden administration concluded that the plan was unrealistic. Last week Mr. Biden accelerated his timeline, saying the mission in Afghanistan would be over by the end of August.

Speaking from the East Room in the White House, he defended the decision to leave.

“Let me ask those who wanted us to stay: How many more? How many thousands more of America’s daughters and sons are you willing to risk? How long would you have them stay?” the President asked.

Questioned by reporters, Mr. Biden insisted the mission to Afghanistan “hasn’t failed, yet. As the US and NATO forces have finalized their exit in recent months, the Taliban has been winning on the battlefield.

Molly Aronson

I'm an award-winning blogger who enjoys all things creative but is especially passionate about lifestyle design. I blog over at mehlogy.com I love that I get to share my passion for healthy living, fashion, fitness, and travel with readers from all over the world.

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