House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is defending President Joe Biden as he comes under fire from all sides over America’s chaotic exit from Afghanistan.
Just one day before a Taliban takeover evoked comparisons to the fall of Saigon, Pelosi said that Biden should be “commended” for how he handled America’s longest war. “The president is to be commended for the clarity of purpose of his statement on Afghanistan and his action,” she said in a statement, according to Breitbart.
“The world is watching”
Pelosi also expressed concern Saturday for the fate of women and girls under Islamist rule and warned the Taliban that the “world is watching.”
“The Taliban must know that the world is watching its actions,” the speaker said. “We are deeply concerned about reports regarding the Taliban’s brutal treatment of all Afghans, especially women and girls.”
Pelosi was soon condemned as out of touch by Republicans and some Democrats as scenes of a hasty U.S. evacuation in Kabul on Sunday drew comparisons to the Vietnam War.
Meeting little resistance from the Afghan army, the Taliban reclaimed control of Afghanistan in about a week as the country rapidly collapsed without support from the United States. Afghanistan’s president fled in disgrace, NBC News reported, as the Taliban, which was said to have seized American weapons, freed al-Qaida prisoners.
Even the ordinarily friendly mainstream media ripped Biden for what many called a humiliating and botched withdrawal that left Americans, their allies, and desperate Afghans racing to escape at Kabul’s airport, according to reports.
Biden deflects blame, defends withdrawal
Kabul’s fall blindsided the White House, which had predicted only days before that the capital could hold for as long as 90 days.
As the outcry grew over the Taliban victory Sunday, Biden expressed no regrets from Camp David. But he blamed the 300,000-strong Afghan army, which surrendered without a fight, and former President Donald Trump, who Biden said had left him in a difficult position.
Trump had sought to withdraw all U.S. troops by May, Breitbart noted, but Biden, seeking a political win, pushed the deadline to coincide with the 20-year anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
In a speech to the American people Monday, Biden acknowledged that Afghanistan fell faster than he expected, but he forcefully defended the withdrawal, according to the AP, saying, “American troops cannot and should not be fighting the war, and dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves.”