What’s Happening in Afghanistan?

Cade Clark, MVC Writer

Afghanistan has been all over the news recently, and some people might be unclear as to why.

Back in April, President Biden announced that it was “time to end forever war.” He revealed a plan to have all US troops removed by September 11th of this year. 

While this move may seem sudden to some, the plan to withdraw troops has been under consideration for much longer than five months. Ever since 9/11, America has been involved in a war to fight terrorism in Afghanistan. This particular war has caused lots of controversy as many Americans do not believe troops should still be in the country. There have been talks about withdrawing troops from Afghanistan for over a decade now.

Once this plan to get troops out of Afghanistan started to gain traction, it raised doubt in people’s minds. People did not see Afghanistan being able to sustain themselves without American protection. Fast forward a few months when American troops withdrew,  the Taliban took control almost instantly.

On July 6, the biggest US base in Afghanistan became the first to announce their withdrawal. 

Biden came out and declared, “the likelihood there’s going to be the Taliban overrunning everything and owning the whole country is highly unlikely.” 

In August, the Taliban took control of their first province in Afghanistan: Nimroz. Nine days later, the Taliban also took control of Kabul, which is the capital of Afghanistan. Then the President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani fled to the UAE. 

Since the Taliban has taken control, it has become a priority of our government to get any American residents out of Afghanistan. The airport in Kabul has been overflowing with civilians in Afghanistan or people who have had ties to the United States trying to make their exit from the newly Taliban controlled country.

Biden still continues to respectfully defend the decisions he made, as he recently said in an address to the nation, “I do not regret my decision to end America’s warfighting in Afghanistan.”

On Thursday, August 26th, there were two reported explosions at the entrance of the Kabul airport. It was later revealed that for the first time in 18 months, there were American casualties on Afghanistan soil. Twelve soldiers lost their lives, and 15 more were injured. In addition, 60 Afghans also lost their lives. The bombing was claimed by ISIS-K, an enemy to both the Taliban and the U.S. President Biden declared there would be retaliation and in the following days drone strikes were targeted at ISIS-K targets.