Afghanistan: Pullout should be conditions-based, Donald Trump tells Joe Biden

Biden has come under criticism at home and abroad for the decisive withdrawal of troops that has continued at a rapid pace despite military advances being made by the Taliban, who are now in control of at least 10 provincial capitals, raising fears of the return of the barbaric regime that was in place from 1996 to 2001.
Former US President Donald Trump.(Reuters file photo)
Former US President Donald Trump.(Reuters file photo)
Published on Aug 13, 2021 07:36 AM IST
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ByYashwant Raj, Hindustan Times, Washington

Former American president Donald Trump on Thursday joined growing criticism of President Joe Biden’s handling of the situation in Afghanistan, saying the withdrawal of US-led foreign forces should be based on conditions on the ground. He added that what is going on in the country now is “not acceptable”.

“If I were now president, the world would find that our withdrawal from Afghanistan would be conditions-based,” Trump said. “I personally had discussions with top Taliban leaders whereby they understood what they are doing now would not have been acceptable,” he added, referring to negotiations that led to the signing of an accord with the Taliban in February 2020.

Biden, it must be noted, is implementing that same deal, although he has publicly expressed reservations over it, saying it’s not something he would have negotiated.

He pushed back the exit date, from May end to August end, to be wrapped up by September 11 this year - the 20th anniversary of 9/11 terror attacks that had taken US forces to Afghanistan.

“It would have been a much different and much more successful withdrawal, and the Taliban understood that better than anyone,” Trump said. “What is going on now is not acceptable. It should have been done much better.”

Biden has come under criticism at home and abroad for the decisive withdrawal of troops that has continued at a rapid pace despite military advances being made by the Taliban, who are now in control of at least 10 provincial capitals, raising fears of the return of the barbaric regime that was in place from 1996 to 2001.

US officials estimate the Afghan capital of Kabul to fall to the Taliban in a month or two, according to reports.

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