President Joe Biden’s withdrawal of American forces in Afghanistan has been branded a “total failure” by Brexit leader Nigel Farage.
Mr Farage noted that the public opinion in America had sharply turned against spending more blood and treasure in Afghanistan, with former President Trump spearheading the anti-war sentiment and then candidate-Biden voicing similar ideas during the 2020 campaign.
“However, the fact you agree you are going to withdraw troops and how you do it are two different things,” the Brexit leader said on GB News on Monday morning.
“What Biden has done is leave the world in a lurch and I think it is a total failure of his presidency. Leaving is one thing, how you do it is another,” he added.
Highlighting a common theme over the past few years, Mr Farage said that once again “all the experts have been proved wrong” in their assessments of the ability of the Taliban forces to take over the country and indeed on the capabilities of the Afghan army, which was equipped and trained predominantly at American and British expense.
Farage downplayed Britain’s role in the withdrawal, saying that Biden decided “almost unilaterally” that American-led NATO forces were “just going to go, just going to disappear overnight, without any thought to what the consequences may be.”
“Now we face a potentially horrendous situation, no one dares use the word, but we are now in a position, where British nationals, Americans, and perhaps some others are potentially facing a hostage situation because there is no way we can get our people out,” he warned.
Both Trump and Biden were adamant about withdrawing all US troops from Afghanistan, and both were right. That country doesn't belong to the US and the US can't run it forever.
But the idea that problems with withdrawal plans belongs to anyone but Biden is preposterous.
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) August 15, 2021
The assessment from Mr Farage was seconded by the chairman of the defence committee in the House of Commons, Tory MP Tobias Ellwood, who mocked President Biden by questioning: “Whatever happened to ‘America is back’?”
“People are bewildered that after two decades of this big, high-tech power intervening, they are withdrawing and effectively handing the country back to the people we went in to defeat,” Ellwood said.
“This is the irony. How can you say America is back when we’re being defeated by an insurgency armed with no more than [rocket-propelled grenades], land mines and AK-47s?” he questioned.
Yet, others in the UK have tried to pin the blame for the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan on former President Trump, including Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.
Mr Wallace told the BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “The die was cast when the deal was done by Donald Trump if you want my observation.”
“President Biden inherited a momentum, a momentum that had been given to the Taliban because they felt they had now won, he’d also inherited a momentum of troop withdrawal from the international community, the US.”
“So I think in that sense, the seeds of what we’re seeing today were before President Biden took office. The seeds were a peace deal that was (effectively) rushed, that wasn’t done in collaboration properly with the international community and then a dividend taken out incredibly quickly.”
Mr Biden’s failed withdrawal of Afghanistan has also started drawing criticism from continental Europe, however, with Germany’s public broadcaster Deutsche Welle declaring that the “US has gambled away its credibility”.
“The war in Afghanistan was launched in response to the attack on the United States on September 11, 2001. With baffling logic, Joe Biden had announced that the withdrawal would end on the 20th anniversary of the attack,” journalist Ines Pohl wrote in DW.
“Nothing has been won in these 20 years. At the same time, however, a great deal of credibility has been squandered. Particularly among those who, by their willingness to support the Western military alliance, have put not only their lives but also those of their families at risk, and who are now being so shamefully abandoned. This concerns us all. And must shame us all,” she added.
Boris to Recall Parliament as Afghanistan Withdrawal Branded Biggest Blunder ‘Since Suez’ https://t.co/7dYhh4Hfg5
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) August 15, 2021
Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka