Joe Biden defends handling of Afghanistan withdrawal
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Joe Biden has dismissed concerns over images and videos of Afghans falling thousands of feet to their deaths trying to escape Taliban rule in Afghanistan. In an exclusive interview with ABC, the US President lost his cool when he was confronted about the footage, saying “That was four days ago, five days ago”. The outburst fuelled an uproar on Twitter, with many users criticising the “callous” statement.
Former White House Communications Director George Stephanopoulos asked President Biden: “When you look at what’s happened over the past week, was it a failure of intelligence, execution, or judgment?
Mr Biden replied: “Look, I don’t think it was a fair look it was a simple choice, George.
“When you had the government of Afghanistan, the leader of that government get into the plane taking off and going to another country.
“When you saw the significant collapse of the Afghan troops we had trained up to 300,000 just leaving their equipment and taking off. That was. That’s what happened. That’s simply what happened.”
Mr Stephanopoulos pressed on: “But we’ve all seen the pictures.
“We’ve seen those hundreds of people packed into a C17.”
The US president then said in response: “What I thought was, we have to gain control this. We have to move this more quickly. We have to move in a way in which we can take control that airport. And we did.”
Taking to Twitter, one user wrote: “President Trump is right. What’s happening in Afghanistan is the “greatest embarrassment in the history of our country.”
While another commented: “The media screwed America over by not vetting or being honest about Joe Biden during the 2020 election.
“They ran cover for him, suppressed critical information, and weren’t honest with you. Now we are stuck with a man who is inept and incapable of doing the job.”
A third wrote: “I’m old enough to remember, when I was a SEAL… we didn’t leave our people behind.”
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Another user wrote: “He said this outcome was always priced into this decision.
“A few hours ago his general said they had NO idea this would occur. Which one didn’t get the updated script?”
And another added: “Please tell me this was edited, surely @potus is not that callous that people falling to death does not matter since it was 4-5 days ago.”
One user added: “This is what he’s counting on. He wants everyone to forget this disaster and move on.”
Mr Stephanopoulos asked: “So you don’t think this exit could have been handled better in any way? no mistakes?
Mr Biden said: “Oh, I don’t think it could have been handled in a way that.. we were gonna go back in hindsight and look, but the idea that somehow there’s a way to have gotten out without chaos ensuing. I don’t know how that happens. I don’t know how that happened.”
The host remarked: “So for you, that was always priced into the decision?”
Mr Biden then answered with a firm yes.
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