I am president of America and the buck stops with me: Joe Biden on Afghanistan troop withdrawal | Key points

Over the previous couple of days, the world watched in horror as the Taliban took control of Afghanistan and the nation’s Ashraf Ghani-led authorities collapsed. The occasions of this week come after US forces, which were stationed in Afghanistan for twenty years now, started withdrawing earlier this 12 months.

On Monday, US President Joe Biden made his first speech since the Taliban took management of Afghanistan. Among different issues, he said that he stands by his choice to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan throughout the 15-minute-long speech. He mentioned, “I am the President of the USA and the buck stops with me.”

Here are ten key points from US President Joe Biden’s speech.


In the face of criticism from throughout the globe on the USA’s dealing with of the state of affairs in Afghanistan, US President Joe Biden mentioned he stands by his choice to withdraw American troops from the war-torn nation after twenty years.

Joe Biden mentioned he had to decide on between sticking to a beforehand negotiated settlement to withdraw US troops this 12 months or sending hundreds extra service members again into Afghanistan to battle a “third decade” of warfare.

He mentioned he had inherited the deal struck by former president Donald Trump with the Taliban, in keeping with which there was no ceasefire or settlement defending the US forces in Afghanistan submit May 1.

Biden mentioned he’d quite take the present criticism than go the challenge on to a fifth US president. He mentioned it is time to finish USA’s longest warfare after twenty years and that this was the proper choice for his nation.


During his speech, Joe Biden admitted, “I always promised Americans that I’ll be straight with them. The truth is, this did unfold more quickly than we anticipated, even though we planned for every contingency.”

He acknowledged the “gut-wrenching” photos that have been popping out of Afghanistan and mentioned that the distress was “deeply personal”.

However, he added, “After 20 years, I’ve learned the hard way that there was never a good time to withdraw US forces. Any more years in Afghanistan would not have made any difference. US troops were bearing the brunt for them [Afghans].”


Suggesting causes for the speedy Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, Joe Biden mentioned, “Afghan political leaders gave up and fled the nation. The military collapsed, in some places without trying to fight.”

“We spent over a trillion dollars. We gave the Afghans every chance. But we couldn’t provide them the will to fight for their future,” Joe Biden mentioned.

The US President claimed that the choice to withdraw troops from Afghanistan was justified as the “American forces should not have to die in a war that Afghan troops weren’t prepared to battle themselves.”

“How many more generations of American sons and daughters should lose their lives in an indefinite war?” Joe Biden requested.


US President Joe Biden mentioned that Afghanistan’s former president Ashraf Ghani had failed to arrange the nation for civil warfare.

“When I met Ghani in June and spoke to him over the phone in July, we had a very clear conversation. We spoke about preparing Afghanistan for a civil war after the US military pulls out. We discussed the need to clean up corruption in the government so it can function for the people and the need for Afghan leaders to unite politically. They failed to do all of this.” Joe Biden mentioned.

He added that he had suggested Ashraf Ghani to hunt a political settlement with the Taliban however they’d failed to try this as effectively.


In his tackle on Monday, US President Joe Biden mentioned the US will not repeat mistakes made in the past.

“We will not repeat the mistake of staying and fighting indefinitely in a conflict that’s not in our national interest, of doubling down on a civil war in a foreign country, of attempting to remake a country through endless military deployment of US forces,” Joe Biden mentioned.

Further, he added, “Our true competitors China and Russia would want nothing more than for us to continue to funnel billions of dollars and resources indefinitely into Afghanistan.” The US, he maintained, was making the proper choice by withdrawing its troops.


US President Joe Biden mentioned America’s focus was never nation-building or establishing democracy in Afghanistan. It was to stop one other terror assault on US soil.

“It has always been our decision to get those who had attacked us and we did it. We got Osama,” mentioned the US President.

He mentioned that the USA should now focus on “today’s threats, not yesterday’s”. He mentioned terrorism exists method past Afghanistan and these new threats requires USA’s consideration and assets.


President Joe Biden mentioned the US will, nonetheless, proceed to assist the Afghan individuals with its diplomacy, worldwide affect and humanitarian help.

“We are focused on what is now possible in Afghanistan. We will continue to support the people. We’ll lead with our diplomacy, international influence and humanitarian aid. We’ll push for regional diplomacy to prevent violence and instability and we’ll continue to speak out for basic rights of the Afghan people,” Joe Biden mentioned.

Joe Biden mentioned the USA’s present motion steps in Afghanistan embody deployment of 6,000 US troops to help in the departure of hundreds of residents of the USA and allied nations from the war-torn area. Additionally, US safety forces will attempt to evacuate weak Afghan residents to security outdoors of their very own nation.


On why the US did not start carrying out evacuations earlier, US President Joe Biden mentioned the Afghan authorities had discouraged them from doing so.

“I know there are concerns on why we did not begin to evacuate Afghan civilians sooner. Part of the answer, is some of the Afghans did not want to leave, still hopeful for their country,” Joe Biden mentioned.

He went on to say, “And part of it is because the Afghan government and its supporters discouraged us from organising a mass exodus to avoid triggering, as they said, a crisis of confidence.”


US President Joe Biden mentioned, “My national security team and I have been closely monitoring the situation on the ground in Afghanistan and moving quickly to execute the plans we had put in place to respond to every constituency and contingency including the rapid collapse we are seeing now.”


Reiterating his assist for the withdrawal of troops, Joe Biden mentioned that if the Taliban attack US personnel, the US will reply with ‘devastating pressure’ if needed. He additionally mentioned that the response can be swift and decisive.

In a stern warning to the Taliban, Joe Biden mentioned, “If they attack our personnel or disrupt our operation, the US response will be swift and forceful. We will defend our people with devastating force if necessary.”

LONG READ | Who are the Taliban?

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