Biden announced to end America's longest war in Afghanistan

 President Biden says will bring home the US troops till September 2021 

President Joe Biden on Wednesday officially announced his plans to end America's longest war and bring US troops home from Afghanistan. "I am now the fourth American president to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan," Biden said, stressing that he "will not pass this responsibility on to a fifth."

The president said that "we went to Afghanistan because of a horrific attack that happened 20 years ago," adding that this tragedy "cannot explain why we should remain there in 2021." "We were attacked. We went to war with clear goals. We achieved those objectives. Bin Laden is dead, and al Qaeda is degraded in Iraq and Afghanistan," he said. "It is time to end the forever war."

The Biden administration plans to have all US forces out of the country by the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attack that led the US to war in 2001, according to a senior US official. The full withdrawal will begin on May 1.

Official estimates put the current number of US troops in Afghanistan at 2,500, though the number may actually be slightly higher, and there are another 7,000 NATO troops in country. NATO will also withdraw all the troops from Afghanistan in coordination with American administration.

 As of the end of last year, American military operations in Afghanistan had cost $824.9 billion, according to the Pentagon estimates. The overall cost of the war has been substantially higher. More than 2,400 US troops have been killed in Afghanistan, and over 20,000 have been wounded in action.

Concerns have been raised that with the end of US military support, the Taliban will seize the opportunity to undo the efforts of the past two decades. The US intelligence community argued in a new report that "the Afghan Government will struggle to hold the Taliban at bay if the coalition withdraws support."

Biden stated Wednesday that "while we will not stay involved in Afghanistan militarily, our diplomatic and humanitarian work will continue." He added that "we will continue to support the government of Afghanistan" and "keep providing assistance to the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces."

"They continue to fight valiantly on behalf of their country and defend the Afghans at great cost," he said. Tens of thousands of Afghan troops have been killed in conflict with the Taliban.

One of several driving factors behind the decision to withdraw US forces from Afghanistan is shifting priorities, especially as the US shifts its focus to growing threats from Russia and China.

                                                         Web Desk

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