What Did The United States Accomplish In Afghanistan?

saurav sarkar

Photo by Specna Arms on Unsplash

There are no American troops in Afghanistan for the first time since the attacks of September 11, 2001. U.S. President Joe Biden said on Tuesday that after the Trump administration signed a withdrawal agreement with the Taliban in February 2020, he was left with only two options: either honor the agreement or renege on it and send in more troops to continue the war, while defending his decision to withdraw forces, which led to the Taliban quickly taking over Kabul on August 15. "I wasn't going to extend this forever war, and I wasn't going to extend a forever exit," Mr. Biden said.

As a result, the never-ending war has come to an end. What was gained by the United States?

Mr. Biden is now trying to reinterpret American foreign policy from a realist, national security standpoint. He claimed on Tuesday that the United States invaded Afghanistan not because it was ruled by the Taliban but because the September 11 attacks originated in Afghanistan. At the beginning of July, he stated that "America did not go to Afghanistan to build a nation." Al-Qaeda was to be disrupted and the 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden captured or killed were America's primary goals in Afghanistan. Mr. Biden asserted that the United States had achieved its objectives. He's downplaying the Taliban's return to power in Afghanistan. They claim that the Taliban were not the main enemy of the United States and their defeat was not a top priority for the military operation.[1]

America went to Afghanistan because of 9/11, but As his predecessors' actions show, Vice President Biden's view of the Taliban was different. In December 2001, the Taliban made a modest surrender offer, but President George W. Bush rejected it and his military vowed to defeat them. After the Taliban regime fell and the insurgents fled to the Afghan mountains and Pakistan, the United States did not withdraw its forces from Afghanistan. Even after the death of Osama bin Laden in 2011, the United States did not abandon its commitments. The United States remained in Afghanistan to support the Islamic Republic because American leaders believed that the return of the Taliban to power would sidetrack the global war on terror.

According to the Biden doctrine, the Taliban are now Afghans' problems, not Americans'. American forces worked with the Taliban to ensure airport security during their final days in Afghanistan. The Taliban and the Haqqani Network, a designated terrorist organization, are even described by the State Department as two distinct entities.

Photo by israel palacio on Unsplash


When the United States invaded Afghanistan, it was hailed as a first step in what President Bush called a global war on terrorism. He asserted that terrorism knows no boundaries and that the fight against it would not be confined to national borders. What is the current state of play in that conflict?

Al-Qaeda had most of its members in Afghanistan at the time of the September 11 attacks. As a result of the U.S. invasion and the Taliban's defeat, al-Qaeda was forced to disband. Although the terrorist group was forced underground, it was not completely destroyed. New al-Qaeda networks have emerged around the world as time has passed. After the United States invaded Iraq in 2003, al-Qaeda in Iraq, led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, became the deadliest. In 2006, a U.S. airstrike killed the Jordanian-born terrorist, but AQI evolved into the Islamic State of Iraq, which later became the dreaded Islamic State (IS), which declared a Caliphate and established a proto-state in Iraq and Syria in 2014.

Minimal progress has been made

The physical infrastructure of the Islamic State was demolished by a coalition of countries, including the United States, Iran, Iraq, Kurdish and Shia militias, Syria, and Russia, acting in concert but with distinct goals. However, the group's tail continues to wag the dog in certain regions of Syria and Iraq. More than 200 people died in the Kabul bombings on August 26th, including 13 Americans, according to IS provinces in other parts of the world, including IS West Africa Province (ISWAP) and IS Khorasan Province (ISKP). Al-Qaeda has also made a strong showing in Africa, particularly in the Sahel, where they have conducted lots of attacks in recent years, killing hundreds of civilians. As a result, whereas al-Qaeda was a well-coordinated terrorist organization based in Afghanistan in 2001, it has since dispersed throughout the globe as a decentralized amalgam.

Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan was disrupted by the United States, which has neutralized the terrorists' ability to strike the American mainland and killed bin, Laden. However, policymakers and the general public in the United States are debating whether or not it was necessary to spend over $2 trillion, send over 2,300 troops to Afghanistan, and remain there for 20 years in order to achieve such modest goals.

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