Boris Claims Fallen Soldiers Did Not Die ‘In Vain’ as Taliban Retake Afghanistan

Afghanistan
MOHAMMAD ISMAIL/AFP via Getty Images

Prime Minister Boris Johnson claimed the deaths of over 400 British soldiers in Afghanistan was not “in vain” as the Taliban retook the country from the Western-backed regime in Kabul.

“I don’t think that it was in vain. If you look back at what has happened over the last 20 years there was a massive effort to deal with a particular problem that everybody will remember after 9/11. That was successful,” the Prime Minister said on Saturday, possibly in reference to the slaying of Osama bin Laden in 2011 — although that took place at a compound in neighbouring Pakistan, where the jihadist sheikh had been living just miles from the Pakistani military academy unmolested.

“To a very large extent the threat from al-Qaeda on the streets of our capital, around the UK, around the whole of the West was greatly, greatly reduced,” Johnson added.

This assertion seems particularly questionable, given the invasion of Afghanistan did not stop the so-called 7/7 attacks which killed 56 and injured 784 in London in 2005, or prevent al-Qaeda and currently or formerly al-Qaeda affiliated organisations including al-Shabaab and al-Nusra from becoming major players in conflicts in West Africa, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, and a host of other countries.

“I believe it was right, it was worth it and what we must do now is not turn our backs on Afghanistan,” the Tory leader added, heedless of the fact that the country is clearly being retaken by the Taliban with alacrity as the Joe Biden-led withdrawal from the country continues apace.

“The UK can be extremely proud of what has been done in Afghanistan over the last 20 years,” Johnson went on, reiterating his claim that “Thanks to the efforts of the UK armed services, all the sacrifices they made, we have seen no al-Qaeda attacks against the West for a very long time” — although this neatly glosses over the fact that the deadliest al-Qaeda attack on British soil, the aforementioned 7/7 bombings, took place years after the invasion of Afghanistan, and the similarly uncomfortable fact that the Islamic State formerly pledged allegiance to al-Qaeda.

Johnson also stressed that “there are millions of girls and young women who have been educated in Afghanistan” — a point he has made several times before when claiming the invasion will have a lasting legacy, but one which will quickly pale to irrelevance should the Taliban reimpose sharia law and once again condemn any quasi-Westernised Afghan women to the burqa, if not the death penalty.

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