After a hectic month of chaos in Afghanistan, the United States have announced that they have completed the withdrawal of all service members from Afghanistan on August 31. Altogether, a staggering estimate of about 122,000 people was successfully evacuated out of the country, but unfortunately many remain.
The U.S. began to evacuate its troops from the country in early 2021. In August, things began to ramp up as the Taliban went on the move and swiftly took over parts of the country. This triggered panic and urgency among Afghans to evacuate the country before the Taliban fully took control.
The evacuation from Afghanistan was not an easy feat. Primarily at Kabul Airport, tens of thousands of Afghans and Americans flocked to get into any plane to leave the country. Sadly, not everyone was able to escape the country successfully. There are believed to be at least 100 Americans still remaining in the country.
On Thursday, August 26, a suicide bomb attack at Kabul Airport resulted in the death of 13 U.S. Service Members and 169 Afghans, along with dozens of others who were wounded as well. The 13 included 11 Marines, one Navy Corpsman, and one Army soldier. President Biden vows to take revenge on those Americans lost. In his message to the nation, President Biden said, “To those who carried out this attack, as well as anyone who wishes America harm, know this: We will not forgive.” The president went on to say, “We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay.”
Mr. Gillette, the department chair of the Social Science Department at Keppel, provided his insight about the situation in Afghanistan. The evacuation of Afghanistan, “had to happen sooner or later.” He expressed his regards to those unable to evacuate, “That’s pretty messed up. … You certainly wouldn’t want to see people who were aiding Americans now being punished for that support that we imposed in that area in the first place.”
The Taliban have proclaimed that they have claimed full control over Afghanistan, but there are still resistance forces who are determined to defend their country from the Taliban.
The Taliban have also claimed that the group as a whole has changed to become “renewed” compared to in the past. However, it is hard to be sure if the Taliban have changed for the better and to what extent they have changed. When asked whether the Taliban’s seizure of power would possibly lead to future conflicts, Gillette plainly states, “I don’t know.”