President Joe Biden has faced withering criticism both at home and abroad for his horribly botched withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan, a move that resulted in an immediate Taliban takeover and that left thousands of American citizens — not to mention allies from Afghanistan and NATO nations — stranded in the war-torn nation.
Now comes word that Biden’s White House has sought to dodge the “moral responsibility” of aiding in the evacuation of those Afghan and NATO allies by omitting those exact words from a readout of the president’s call this week with French President Emmanuel Macron, TheBlaze reports.
That omission became apparent when comparing the readouts of the conversation that were publicly released by both the White House as well as the French Embassy in the United States.
Macron cites “moral responsibility”
British media outlet The Guardian was the first to report on the omission of President Macron’s mention of “collective moral responsibility” to save the brave Afghan allies who assisted the international coalition during the 20-year war from the White House’s readout of the Thursday phone call.
The development was discovered Friday when the French Embassy released its own readout of the call from the day before, in which Macron reportedly “underscored the absolute need for swift, concrete coordination between the allies to ensure the evacuation of our citizens, Afghan men and women who worked for the allies, and those who are in danger.”
“The head of state emphasized our collective moral responsibility toward the Afghan men and women who need our protection and who share our values. We cannot abandon them,” the French version of readout added.
The French embassy concluded by noting an agreement between the two presidents on strengthening their humanitarian and counterterrorism efforts, and again referenced a “collective responsibility” to address the situation, to which Biden was said to have also agreed.
No mention from the White House
But in the White House readout of the Thursday call between Biden and Macron, there was no mention of any “responsibility” at all, collective or moral or otherwise.
“They lauded the tireless efforts of their personnel working closely together in Kabul on the evacuation of their citizens, the brave Afghans who have stood by us and our NATO partners, and other vulnerable Afghan nationals,” the U.S. version of the call reads.
“They underscored the importance of continued close coordination among allies and democratic partners on Afghanistan, including through multilateral fora, on the provision of humanitarian assistance and support for refugees,” the readout concludes. “They welcomed the virtual G7 leaders’ meeting next week to help coordinate these efforts and discuss a common approach.”
No answers from Washington
Incredibly, The Guardian reported that when pressed on the omission of Macron’s mention of “collective moral responsibility,” the Biden White House merely referred reporters back to the very same readout they’d taken issue with.
This comes as tens of thousands of Afghans who served as interpreters or worked in other ways to assist the international coalition in Afghanistan over the years are stranded in the country, facing bureaucratic backlogs and red tape preventing their departure — to say nothing of the Taliban blocking off access to the airport in Kabul. And it’s all on Biden’s watch.