Biden dismisses comparisons between Afghanistan and Vietnam wars

·2 min read

President Joe Biden disagreed with parallels being drawn between the end of U.S. involvement in the Afghanistan and Vietnam wars after announcing the drawdown of troops in Afghanistan would be complete by Aug. 31, ahead of his original schedule.

"None whatsoever. Zero," Biden said Thursday at the White House. "The Taliban is not the North Vietnamese Army. They're not, they're not remotely comparable in terms of capability."

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Biden recalled the 1975 Fall of Saigon in which U.S. and foreign nationals, as well as some from South Vietnam, were flown to safety via helicopter as part of Operation Frequent Wind.

"There's going to be no circumstance where you're going to see people being lifted off the roof of an embassy of the United States from Afghanistan. It is not at all comparable," he said.

Biden answered multiple questions about Afghanistan after explaining his decision to withdraw U.S. forces despite the Taliban's increasing influence across the country. Both the Afghanistan and Vietnam wars spanned decades and concluded without decisive victories.

"Let me ask those who want us to stay: How many thousands more American daughters and sons are you willing to risk? How long would you have them stay? Already, we have members of our military whose parents fought in Afghanistan 20 years ago. Would you send their children?" he asked critics.

While Biden was unconvinced the Afghanistan government would immediately fall to the Taliban, he urged the two sides to agree to a peace deal, admitting it was "highly unlikely" one government could maintain control of the country.

“No nation has ever unified Afghanistan,” he said.

The president also noted his long-standing opposition to a presence in Afghanistan, contending the U.S. "accomplished" its counterterrorism mission years ago. Biden said the order to withdraw service members is "quite frankly, overdue" as growing threats emerge in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

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U.S. personnel abandoned Bagram Airfield this month, which was once the headquarters for the Afghanistan operation. About 650 troops will remain behind, with most helping to secure the U.S. Embassy in nearby Kabul.

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Tags: News, Biden, Biden Administration, Joe Biden, White House

Original Author: Naomi Lim

Original Location: Biden dismisses comparisons between Afghanistan and Vietnam wars