U.S. President Joe Biden stated Monday that he stands “squarely behind” his decision to withdraw U.S. forces from Afghanistan and that the federal government’s collapse was faster than anticipated.

Speaking concerning the chaotic state of affairs in Afghanistan, Biden stated Monday that he confronted a alternative between an settlement to withdraw U.S. forces or ship hundreds extra U.S. troops again in for a “third decade” of battle. Biden stated he won’t repeat the errors of the previous.

Biden spoke after the deliberate withdrawal of American forces turned lethal at Kabul’s airport as hundreds tried to flee following the Taliban’s swift takeover of the federal government.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows beneath.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will deal with the nation on Monday concerning the U.S. evacuation from Afghanistan, after the deliberate withdrawal of American forces turned lethal at Kabul’s airport as hundreds tried to flee the nation after the Taliban’s takeover.

Biden returned to the White House Monday afternoon from the Camp David presidential retreat forward of his deliberate speech at 3:45 p.m. from the East Room. It will probably be his first public remarks on the Afghanistan state of affairs in practically every week. Biden and different high U.S. officers had been shocked by the tempo of the Taliban’s swift routing of the Afghan navy.

Senior U.S. navy officers say the chaos on the airport left seven folks useless Monday, together with some who fell from a departing American navy transport jet. The officers spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of they weren’t approved to publicly focus on ongoing operations.

Afghans rushed onto the tarmac of the capital’s airport as hundreds tried to flee after the Taliban seized energy. Some clung to the facet of a U.S. navy airplane earlier than takeoff, in a extensively shared video that captured the desperation as America’s 20-year battle involves a chaotic finish.

Another video confirmed the Afghans falling because the airplane gained altitude over Kabul. U.S. troops resorted to firing warning photographs and utilizing helicopters to clear a path for transport plane.

The Pentagon confirmed Monday that U.S. forces shot and killed two people it stated have been armed, as Biden ordered one other battalion of troops — about 1,000 troops — to safe the airfield, which was closed to arrivals and departures for hours Monday due to civilians on the runway.

The velocity of the Afghan authorities’s collapse and the following chaos posed probably the most critical check of Biden as commander in chief, and he got here below withering criticism from Republicans who stated that he had failed.

Biden campaigned as a seasoned knowledgeable in worldwide relations and has spent months downplaying the prospect of an ascendant Taliban whereas arguing that Americans of all political persuasions have bored with a 20-year battle, a battle that demonstrated the boundaries of cash and navy may to power a Western-style democracy on a society not prepared or keen to embrace it.

National safety adviser Jake Sullivan stated Monday that the “speed with which cities fell was much greater than anyone anticipated.” He blamed the federal government’s fall on the Afghans themselves, telling NBC’s “Today” present that the U.S. finally couldn’t give Afghan safety forces the “will” to battle to defend their fledgling democracy.

“Despite the fact that we spent 20 years and tens of billions of dollars to give the best equipment, the best training and the best capacity to the Afghan security forces, we could not give them the will and they ultimately decided that they would not fight for Kabul and they would not fight for the country,” Sullivan stated.

The turmoil in Afghanistan resets the main focus in an unwelcome approach for a president who has largely targeted on a home agenda that features rising from the pandemic, profitable congressional approval for trillions of {dollars} in infrastructure spending and defending voting rights.

Biden remained at Camp David over the weekend, receiving common briefings on Afghanistan and holding safe video convention calls with members of his nationwide safety workforce, in accordance with senior White House officers. His administration launched a single picture of the president on Sunday alone in a convention room assembly nearly with navy, diplomatic and intelligence specialists.

He was briefed once more by his nationwide safety workforce on Monday earlier than returning to Washington.

Biden is the fourth U.S. president to confront challenges in Afghanistan and has insisted he would not hand America’s longest battle to his successor. But he will probably have to elucidate how safety in Afghanistan unraveled so rapidly, particularly since he and others within the administration have insisted it would not occur.

“The jury is still out, but the likelihood there’s going to be the Taliban overrunning everything and owning the whole country is highly unlikely,” Biden stated on July 8.

Just final week, although, administration officers warned privately that the navy was crumbling, prompting Biden on Thursday to order hundreds of American troops into the area to hurry up evacuation plans.

Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump additionally yearned to depart Afghanistan, however finally stood down within the face of resistance from navy leaders and different political issues. Biden, then again, has been steadfast in his refusal to vary the Aug. 31 deadline, partially due to his perception that the American public is on his facet.

A late July ABC News/Ipsos ballot, as an example, confirmed 55% of Americans approving of Biden’s dealing with of the troop withdrawal.

Most Republicans haven’t pushed Biden to maintain troops in Afghanistan over the long run they usually additionally supported Trump’s personal push to exit the nation. Still, some within the GOP stepped up their critique of Biden’s withdrawal technique and stated photographs from Sunday of American helicopters circling the U.S. Embassy in Kabul evoked the humiliating departure of U.S. personnel from Vietnam.

Senate Republican chief Mitch McConnell deemed the scenes of withdrawal as “the embarrassment of a superpower laid low.”

Senior administration officers consider the U.S. will be capable to keep safety on the Kabul airport lengthy sufficient to extricate Americans and their allies, however the destiny of these unable to get to the airport was removed from sure.

In the higher ranks of Biden’s employees, the fast collapse in Afghanistan solely confirmed the decision to depart: If the meltdown of the Afghan forces would come so rapidly after practically 20 years of American presence, one other six months or a yr or two or extra wouldn’t have modified something.

Biden has argued for greater than a decade that Afghanistan was a form of purgatory for the United States. He discovered it to be corrupt, hooked on America’s largesse and an unreliable associate that needs to be made to fend for itself. His aim was to guard Americans from terrorist assaults, not constructing a rustic.

In July he stated he made the decision to withdraw with “clear eyes.” His judgment was that Afghanistan could be divided in a peace settlement with the Taliban, moderately than falling abruptly.

“There’s going to be no circumstance where you see people being lifted off the roof of a embassy in the — of the United States from Afghanistan,” he stated in July. “The likelihood there’s going to be one unified government in Afghanistan controlling the whole country is highly unlikely.”


Associated Press writers Michael Balsamo, James LaPorta and Mary Clare Jalonick contributed to this report.


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