Saturday, August 28, 2021

Biden Warns Another Attack in Afghanistan Likely as U.S. Begins Final Stage of Withdrawal

Yeah, and another, and another, and another -- ad infinitum.

Shoot, Biden might as well have campaigned on bringing the war to an end in 2099. *Eye-roll.*

At WSJ, "Pentagon says it believes two militants killed in U.S. drone strike; Kabul is on high alert":

Evacuation efforts in Kabul began to wind down Saturday as the Afghan capital was on high alert for possible terrorist attacks in the wake of a U.S. strike against Islamic State.

President Biden said that his military commanders informed him that another attack in Afghanistan is “highly likely in the next 24-36 hours.” Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack Thursday outside Kabul’s airport that killed nearly 200 people, including 13 members of the U.S. military.

“The situation on the ground continues to be extremely dangerous, and the threat of terrorist attacks on the airport remains high,” Mr. Biden said in a statement. He said he directed military commanders “to take every possible measure to prioritize force protection.”

The U.S. and its allies have evacuated more than 117,000 people from Afghanistan in the two weeks since the Taliban toppled the Afghan government. About 1,400 people were inside the airport and waiting for flights on Saturday.

After the U.S. told partners that it was wrapping up evacuation efforts, thousands of people intent on fleeing but unable to get into the airfield began to shift their attention to other possible escape routes, including the land border with Pakistan.

The U.S. military carried out an airstrike on suspected Islamic State militants in eastern Afghanistan in response to Thursday’s suicide bombing, which targeted crowds of people hoping to get into the airport and seek refuge abroad.

The U.S. military said it believed the drone strike had killed two Islamic State militants and wounded one other. The Pentagon said there were no civilian casualties. Parts of Nangarhar province, where the strike occurred, have become a sanctuary for Islamic State’s regional offshoot, along with other spots in eastern Afghanistan.

In Nangarhar, Rahamunullah, a neighbor, said three people were killed and four others were wounded, including a woman.

The strike appeared to cause limited damage to a house. Video from the scene viewed by The Wall Street Journal showed a small blast hole outside the home next to a fire-charred auto rickshaw. The walls were pockmarked with shrapnel, and the windows of the building had been blown out. Clothes, sandals and furniture were tossed around the rooms.

Asked about the strike, the first that targeted Islamic State since the Taliban took control of the country, a Taliban spokesman said the group was looking into the matter. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the U.S. didn’t coordinate the operation with the Taliban. Meanwhile, British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said the U.K. wasn’t accepting any more applicants trying to leave Afghanistan and would evacuate only those already inside the airport.

The number of people flying out of Kabul has dropped significantly: American and coalition partners flew out about 6,800 on Friday, down from a daily high of nearly 22,000 earlier this week.

The Taliban tightened their security cordon around the Kabul airport as the throngs of Afghans crowding the gates subsided. Americans and a few others escorted by Qatari officials were allowed to come to the airport, according to people involved in the evacuation effort. But the Taliban turned back many people trying to leave the country.

Americans still trying to get people out of Afghanistan expressed frustration with the evacuation effort as the window of opportunity closed for most.

“A lot of people are being left behind,” said Kimberley Motley, an American attorney who was trying on Saturday to get four U.S. green-card holders to the Kabul airport. “It’s a reflection of our lack of preparation in making sure this was done in a responsible, ethical and moral way. We’ve put thousands, if not millions, of people at risk.” Western officials said they were on the lookout for another attack. The U.S. Embassy issued new warnings to Americans in Afghanistan on Saturday telling them to avoid the airport.

“Due to a security threat outside the gates of Kabul airport, U.S. citizens located in the vicinity of the Kabul airport gates should depart immediately,” the warning read. “U.S. citizens should avoid traveling to the airport and avoid all airport gates at this time.”

In Kabul, the Taliban worked to extend their authority as they seek to form a functioning new government.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid directed women working for the Ministry of Public Health to return to work, offering one sign of their willingness to allow women to work—something the Taliban hadn’t allowed when they ruled the country in the 1990s.

The Biden administration appeared poised to stick with its Tuesday deadline to pull the last of the nation’s forces out of Afghanistan and end the 20-year war...

Pfft, the forever war is right --- and to think, the dolt Biden campaigned on this, that is, he campaigned on lies. 

And those Afghan women brought back to work? Once the new regime is fully established and functional, these same women will once again be locked down in burqas and nikabs. It won't be long. Back to the future of the Stone Age.

Still more.