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In Address To Congress, Biden Defends Ending 'Forever War' In Afghanistan

By RFE/RL April 29, 2021

WASHINGTON -- President Joe Biden said it's time to end the "forever war" in Afghanistan as he defended his decision to withdraw U.S. troops from the country by September.

"Today we have service members serving in the same war as their parents once did," Biden said in his first major speech to a joint session of Congress on April 28. "War in Afghanistan was never meant to be a multigenerational undertaking of nation-building."

Biden earlier in April announced the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan by September 11, four months later than the May 1 deadline agreed to with the Taliban by the previous administration of Donald Trump.

In his speech to Congress, Biden said the U.S. military went to Afghanistan after the 9/11 terrorist attacks to stop the threat from Al-Qaeda.

"We delivered justice to Osama Bin Laden and we degraded the terrorist threat of Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan," Biden said.

The impending U.S. exit from Afghanistan has prompted concern about the ability of the Afghan security forces to hold territory against the Taliban in the absence of a peace deal. Such a civil war could give Al-Qaeda an opportunity to rebuild and plan new attacks on U.S. and other targets.

Even as the U.S. and NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan, Biden said that "we will maintain an over-the-horizon capability to suppress future threats to the homeland."

Source: defends-ending-forever-war-in -afghanistan-/31228842.html

Copyright (c) 2021. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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