Afghan President Surfaces in the United Arab Emirates

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Ashraf Ghani, the Afghan president who fled his country as the Taliban gained the upper hand in the civil war against his government has surfaced in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

“The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation can confirm that the UAE has welcomed President Ashraf Ghani and his family into the country on humanitarian grounds,” announced the small Middle Eastern nation in a statement.

In an address on Monday, President Joe Biden lambasted Afghanistan’s political leaders for having given up. The proximate cause of the Taliban’s victory has been the United States’ withdrawal and decision to stop providing air support for the Afghan military. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Afghans had relied upon American air power to “resupply outposts, strike targets, ferry the wounded, and collect reconnaissance and intelligence” among other tasks.

U.S. forces have not been leading the fight against the Taliban for years, instead taking on a support role. As a result, American casualties have been almost nonexistent for years, while tens of thousands of Afghan soldiers have perished. Biden asserted in his speech that “Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves.”

On Biden’s orders, Bagram Airfield, long the U.S.’s largest military installation in Afghanistan, was deserted by U.S. troops in July, who turned off the electricity and left without notifying the Afghan commander on site. The base fell to the Taliban on August 15.

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