Joe Biden: US no longer the world’s policeman

By Nick Allen. US EDITOR

1 September 2021

Joe Biden on Tuesday night said that concluding the war in Afghanistan marked the end of the era of America “remaking” nations.

The President indicated a retreat in the United States’ role as the world’s policeman, suggesting he would only intervene in future if there were clear goals and a fundamental national interest for the US.

In comments that will be of concern to allies Mr Biden said he was overhauling US foreign policy, and appeared to move away from engagement in the world.

He said: “As we turn the page on the foreign policy that has guided our nation for the last two decades we have got to learn from our mistakes.

“To me, there are two that are paramount. First, we set missions with clear, achievable goals, not ones we will never reach.

“And, second, we will stay clearly focused on the fundamental national security interest of the United States of America.”

Many of the US interventions since the Second World War would arguably have failed Mr Biden’s tests, including in Vietnam, Libya, Iraq and Somalia.

His position marked a departure from American foreign policy since 1945 and struck a warning for allies reliant on US help.

A Taliban fighter poses at the controls of an abandoned Afghan army aircraft at Kabul airport, which the militants took over on Tuesday after the final US troops withdrew
A Taliban fighter poses at the controls of an abandoned Afghan army aircraft at Kabul airport, which the militants took over on Tuesday after the final US troops withdrew CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES

It also contrasted with his own frequently used slogan “America is back”. What some were calling a new “Biden doctrine” appeared instead to have similarities to Donald Trump’s “America First” foreign policy.

In defending his position Mr Biden suggested that to remain “bogged down” in Afghanistan would have played into the hands of Russia and China.

He added: “We’ve been a nation too long at war. It was time to be honest with the American people again. We no longer had a clear purpose. I take responsibility for the decision.

“For those asking for a third decade of war, I ask ‘What is the vital national interest? It was time to end this war. This is a new world. It was a wise decision and the best decision for America.”

He said the cost of the Afghanistan conflict had been too high in terms of lives and money.

In an address to the nation from the White House, he said: “This decision about Afghanistan is not just about Afghanistan. It’s about ending an era of major military operations to remake other countries.

“I was not going to extend this forever war, and I was not extending a forever exit.”

He added: “The American people should hear this. Three hundred million dollars a day for two decades. What have we lost as consequences in terms of opportunities? I refuse to continue a war that was no longer in the vital national interests of our people.”

The President also attacked critics who said America could have stayed in Afghanistan with a small military presence, saying: “There is nothing ‘low grade’ or ‘low risk’ about any war.”

He defended the chaotic evacuation over the last two weeks, saying it had been an “extraordinary success”.

But he admitted that 100 to 200 Americans remained in Afghanistan with some intention to leave, despite his pledge to leave troops until all US citizens were out.

Most were dual citizens and long-time residents who had earlier decided to stay, he said.

Mr Biden said: “For those remaining Americans there is no deadline. We remain committed to getting them out if they want to come out. We are far from done.

“The bottom line, 90 per cent of Americans in Afghanistan who wanted to leave were able to leave.”

The White House officially corrected this figure later to 98 per cent, not 90 per cent.

He said the US would continue to “hunt down” terrorists seeking to harm the US but using “over the horizon” capabilities rather than boots on the ground. He said the original mission in Afghanistan had been to bring justice to Osama bin Laden, and that had been achieved over a decade ago.

Addressing terror groups Mr Biden said: “The US will never rest. We will not forgive, we will not forget, we will hunt you down to the ends of the Earth and you will pay the ultimate price.”

With US drone strikes having hit Islamic State targets in the days following the Kabul airport terror attack, he added: “To Isis-K, we are not done with you yet.”

With the final American troops having left Kabul, Taliban special forces on Tuesday took control of the airport and climbed into the cockpits of abandoned aircraft, as their supporters paraded coffins draped in the British and US flags. Fears are also growing that the militants are hunting down and killing former members of the defeated Afghan army.

Meanwhile, Britain’s commitment to take in 20,000 Afghans risks creating a “pull effect” for migrants, Germany suggested on Tuesday as Berlin ruled out plans for an EU-wide target.

Brussels is instead preparing to offer countries that neighbour Afghanistan about €600 million to host refugees.

Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, who threw open her country’s borders during the 2015 migration crisis, said the EU should support refugees closer to Afghanistan. EU home affairs ministers decided that only willing countries would resettle refugees.

Horst Seehofer, Germany’s interior minister, said: “I don’t think it’s wise if we talk about numbers here, because numbers obviously trigger a pull effect and we don’t want that.”

Following Mr Biden’s speech, Mitch McConnell, the Republican Senate leader, accused him of abandoning Americans behind enemy lines. He added: “This was a disgraceful and disastrous departure that will allow the Taliban and al-Qaeda to celebrate the 20th anniversary of 9/11 by having complete control of Afghanistan.”

4 comments

  • “He said the original mission in Afghanistan had been to bring justice to Osama bin Laden, and that had been achieved over a decade ago.”
    This fool’s brain is draining as he speaks. The mission, which was forced on America and its ally; Britain (Britain suffered its greatest single loss in a terror attack; c. 100 people), was to remove the Taliban from power and prevent Afghanistan being used as a terror base.
    Biden has simply returned the Taliban to power so that it can resume its activities.
    “America is back”. In the shithouse. Where it will remain until this terrible regime has gone for good.

    A retired three-star US general has warned of America’s ‘inevitable’ return to Afghanistan now that Taliban forces have taken control of the country:-

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9944109/US-inevitably-return-Afghanistan-retired-general-warns.html

    Liked by 3 people

    • As the New York Post said so aptly: Biden lies through his teeth. I’ve seen Biden lie at every press conference.
      He once said that it is not inevitable that the Taliban will retake Afghanistan. On another day he said that it had been expected.
      He assured the public that every American will be evacuated. Then, he said that American citizens trapped inside Afghanistan have no assurances from our government that they will be safely evacuated.
      Biden once said that there are no Al-Qaeda and ISIS in Afghanistan and then John Kirby said the opposite at a Pentagon press conference (he stuttered badly as he was trying to wring his way out of that situation).
      Biden told the press once, “I have seen no question of our credibility from our allies around the world. I’ve spoken with our NATO allies. … The fact of the matter is I have not seen that. As a matter of fact, the exact opposite I’ve gotten. The exact opposite thing is we’re acting with dispatch. We’re committing to what we said we would do.” But, a single look across the media world in Europe, Israel and the Far East gave the opposite picture.
      Biden said that his hands were tied in Afghanistan due to Trump’s deal with the Taliban. However, the situation on the ground there gave him a free hand to do as he saw fit, which he didn’t. He also had no problems dumping every other Trump measure when he took office.
      When this moron opens his filthy mouth, it’s wise to expect lies to come out at any time.

      Liked by 3 people

  • “To me, there are two that are paramount. First, we set missions with clear, achievable goals, not ones we will never reach.
    Biden is lying. As usual. He and his cabinet, including the defense secretary and the chief of staff, are nothing but a pack of incompetent morons. Afghanistan has illustrated this beyond any shadow of a doubt. No withdrawal has ever been conducted in such a chaotic manner and no other administration has lied so much and tried to pass the buck so much as this cage full of monkeys are doing.

    “And, second, we will stay clearly focused on the fundamental national security interest of the United States of America.”
    If what Biden and his gang have accomplished thus far is considered clearly focused, then I fear for the United States and even any other friendly country that this administration focuses on in the future. Seriously now; Biden and his dorks remind me more of the Keystone Kops or an area full of circus clowns, tripping over their oversized shoes and honking their big red noses than a cabinet of the leading nation on earth.

    Liked by 3 people

  • US NO LONGER THE WORLD’S POLICEMAN Biden says, he’d better say WORLD’s warmonger just like at least 3 of UNSC P5 with vetorights there USA, Russia and China, in last century it was also UK and France who meshed up Middle East (Syria, Palestine to name a few) by means of Sykes-Picot treaty among others.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/03/30/trumps-claim-that-the-u-s-pays-the-lions-share-for-nato/
    Budapest Memorandum 1994 under treat of blockade Ukraine was forced to sign and as result Russian Federation became the only nuclear power and main treat to Europe after Cold War was just ended.
    https://web.archive.org/web/20150205050359/https:/articles.chicagotribune.com/1994-01-16/news/9401160298_1_president-leonid-kravchuk-ukraine-russians

    After 9/11 G.W, Bush said if you’re not with us, you’re against us so NATO forces allies of USA since then went on every rampage of warmonger USA whereever on the globe.
    So NATO allies of USA can now say to USA: if you’re not with us, shut up about the 2% GDP defense spending an put NATO-EU forces under european command, they pay 68% of strict NATO costs, USA just 16%.
    https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/content-series/nato20-2020/rethink-and-replace-two-percent/
    So relationship with USA has to be changed.
    https://balkaninsight.com/2021/08/26/nato-is-a-following-with-dues-paying-members-it-must-become-a-partnership/
    Same applies to UN EU pays more then 50% despite being just 7% of world population, so EU should host UN also, and abolish all vetorights in UNSC.
    In 2014 Russia invaded Ukraine and USA and EU(under direction Germany) did nothing.
    https://web.archive.org/web/20160728154624/https://en.sobytiya.info/russian-politician-putin-took-crimea-because-he-was-sure-that-the-united-states-would-not-respond-the-challenge.html
    Only remark of Obama to Putin : Not my problem and for more then a year, USA called it a incursion instead of invasion.

    Liked by 1 person

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