World Kabul Disaster Like Fall of Saigon, Democrat Debbie Dingell Says
As world marks 9/11, Taliban flag raised over seat of power
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Taliban raised their iconic white flag over the Afghan presidential palace Saturday, a spokesman said, as the U.S. and the world marked the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks. The banner, emblazoned with a Quranic verse, was hoisted by Mullah Mohammad Hassan Akhund, the prime minister of the Taliban interim government, in a low-key ceremony, said Ahmadullah Muttaqi, multimedia branch chief of the Taliban’s cultural commission. © Provided by Associated Press A man walks down the stairs at dusk in Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021.
The Biden administration insisted Sunday that images of helicopters airlifting U.S. embassy personnel out of Kabul cannot be compared to the chaotic American exit from Vietnam in 1975, but even some establishmentaren't buying that narrative.
The U.S. State Department announced Thursday that the military was rushing in 3,000 fresh troops to Kabul to assist American personnel in evacuating Afghanistan a few weeks ahead of the planned end to the 20-year war. Michigan Democratic Representative, a staunch ally of the White House, responded to Secretary of State 's repeated line this weekend on cable news that the dramatic departure from the Kabul embassy cannot be compared to the country's desperate evacuation from Saigon, today called Ho Chi Minh City, in 1975.
White House says a 'fair amount' of US military equipment provided to Afghans is now in Taliban hands
"Obviously, we don't have a sense that they are going to readily hand it over to us at the airport," National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said.WASHINGTON — National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said Tuesday a "fair amount" of military equipment the U.S. provided the Afghan National Security Forces was seized by the Taliban in the militant group's quick route of Afghanistan.
"It does feel like the fall of Saigon today, I'm not going to lie," Dingell toldon Sunday morning, echoing critics from both parties who have accused President of rushing out of Afghanistan, capping a war that began weeks after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks two decades ago.
Dingell responded to comments from Blinken, who toldNews earlier on Sunday morning that the U.S. was conducting a partial evacuation of personnel from the Kabul facility. But he did not directly state whether the U.S. was shutting down its embassy entirely as Taliban forces continue to disperse forces around the embattled country.
Bipartisan lawmakers, journalists and foreign diplomats have posted countless side-by-side images of the infamous U.S. embassy evacuation from Saigon with that of this weekend's departure from Kabul. News wire reports have suggested that many Afghan journalists and locals were blindsided by the sudden departure.
'Nobody should be surprised': Why Afghan security forces crumbled so quickly to the Taliban
Analysts say there were signs the Afghan military – unmotivated, disorganized and plagued by low morale – would struggle against the Taliban. "They were evident for a long time," said retired Lt. Col. Daniel Davis, a twice-deployed veteran of the war in Afghanistan. "Nobody should be surprised by these outcomes if they had been paying attention." More: A timeline of the US withdrawal and Taliban recapture of Afghanistan Unmotivated to fight for 'corrupt' government The U.S. pumped more than $80 billion in equipment and training into the Afghan security forces since the start of the war in Afghanistan, which the U.S.
Saigon, US Embassy evacuation, 29 April, 1975.
Kabul, US Embassy evacuation, 15 August, 2021. pic.twitter.com/z1o7LHOXUD— Kanchan Gupta ???????? (@KanchanGupta) August 15, 2021
"We're relocating the men and women of our embassy to a location at the airport. It's why the president sent in a number of forces, to make sure that as we continue to draw down our diplomatic presence we do it in a safe and orderly fashion," Blinken told ABC's This Week program Sunday, before being pressed on the similarity to the infamous images of helicopters scrambling to remove U.S. embassy officials out of Saigon two years after the war officially ended in Vietnam.
"Let's take a step back. This is manifestly not Saigon," added Blinken, noting the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 succeeded in the primary objectives of eliminating Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda after the 9/11 attacks.
"That message should ring out very strongly," he reiterated to the ABC News host later in the program.
Some reporters covering the region responded to the White House with scorn for downplaying Vietnam War comparisons.
"Secretary Blinken is correct. The airlift from Saigon did not happen until two years after a peace deal was signed. The evacuation from Kabul is happening with two weeks still left under Biden's own timeline for an end to the mission," tweeted Reuters foreign correspondent Idrees Ali on Sunday.
Newsweek reached out to Dingell's Michigan congressional offices for any additional remarks about the Afghanistan withdrawal Sunday afternoon.
Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Debbie Dingell get into shouting match on US Capitol steps .
The Democratic congresswoman from Michigan yelled that Greene should be more civil, instead of always being a disruptive, disrespectful colleague.With House Speaker Nancy Pelosi holding a news conference and Democrats set to get their photo taken on the U.S. Capitol steps after a 218-211 party-line vote, Greene came outside and began to heckle Democrats, at one point shouting, "You all should be ashamed.