As previously discussed, the Taliban are insisting that Biden has to stick to the August 31st deadline for leaving Afghanistan or face “consequences”. While the Biden administration’s people, like Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan just spew lies and talking points, NATO allies are making it clear that they don’t expect to be ready to get out of Afghanistan in a week.
The UK has asked for an extension of the deadline.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, in what is likely to be read as a plea to Washington, said “no nation will be able to get everyone out” of the Taliban-controlled country, with the US president’s August 31 target date making the rescue mission even more time pressured.
Writing for the Mail on Sunday, the Cabinet minister said: “If the US timetable remains, we have no time to lose to get the majority of the people waiting out.
“Perhaps the Americans will be permitted to stay longer, and they will have our complete support if they do.”
A pity that under Biden, the support is strictly one way.
The French have also announced that they need to stay after August 31.
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Monday that Paris believed it necessary to continue Afghan evacuations beyond Washington’s August 31 deadline following the Taliban takeover…
“We are concerned about the deadline set by the United States on August 31. Additional time is needed to complete ongoing operations,” Le Drian told reporters at the UAE’s Al-Dhafra air base, where France has set up an air bridge for people evacuated from Kabul…
Le Drian said that access to Kabul airport was the main issue facing evacuation operations.
“We still need to increase our coordination locally, with the United States and with our partners present on site,” he said.
That’s a polite way of saying that the Biden administration and its people are making a mess of things at the airport.
Germany is also saying it needs more time to evacuate.
Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) industrialised countries need to coordinate evacuation efforts from Kabul airport and whether they should continue beyond the Aug 31 deadline set by the United States, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Monday.
At their summit on Tuesday, G7 leaders will also discuss how to improve access for evacuees to Kabul airport, Maas told reporters in Berlin, adding Germany has been looking at options for keeping the airport running beyond Aug 31 for days.
The Germans are saying that they have thousands of people still to evacuate.
General Eberhard Zorn, Germany’s top military commander, said he estimates 5,000 are awaiting evacuation from the Kabul airport. Zorn said the figure has declined from 7,000 this past weekend.
“We are now trying internationally to reduce this number as far as possible to make room for others and above all, ultimately to cushion somewhat the precarious accommodation and waiting situation there,” Zorn said.
The German military evacuated 3,000 people since Kabul fell to the Taliban, its representatives said on Twitter.
The Bundeswehr added 200 were airlifted from Kabul Monday morning.
“We will keep evacuating as many people as possible for as long as possible out of Afghanistan,” the Bundeswehr said.
I’m not a fan of either the French or the Germans, but Biden already screwed NATO by promising to secure operations in Kabul, by rapidly pulling out without coordinating with NATO allies, leaving everyone else holding the bag.
We’ve had a lot of lectures under President Trump about alliances, yet Biden has inflicted a catastrophic betrayal on NATO allies.
Slights may be forgotten, but getting NATO involved in Afghanistan and then cutting and running while leaving them stuck is not going to be easily forgotten by the military and diplomatic people who actually matter.
We’ve never done anything like this before to a NATO member.
And the resulting chaos looks set to deal a crippling blow to the US-UK relationship, among others.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has spoken to Biden only once in recent weeks — two days after the Taliban took Kabul — and called the virtual G-7 meeting in hope of having some impact on the chaotic course of events. Britain currently holds the presidency of the club of wealthy nations.
Johnson seemed to have trouble reaching Biden before. And the UK is reduced to trying to publicly shame Biden.
Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, who has called the U.S. deal with the Taliban that set the Aug. 31 deadline a “mistake,” struck an almost pleading tone, saying that if Biden extended the operation “even by a day or two, that will give us a day or two more to evacuate people.”
“Because we are really down to hours now, not weeks, and we have to make sure we exploit every minute to get people out.”