The newly elected Biden administration will soon need to make a decision about the United States’ level of involvement in Afghanistan. This plan of involvement will affect the U.S. military and the continual effort in the conflict.
President Joe Biden’s background in Afghanistan goes back to his time as the Vice President in 2009.
While working in the Obama administration, he argued that the United States needed to reduce its military role in the region. Instead, with the disapproval of Biden, the Obama administration decided to send an additional 100,000 troops to Afghanistan.
In Feb. 2020, the United States signed the U.S.-Taliban Peace Deal to end the 18-year-war.
The Taliban, a Sunni Islamic fundamentalist political movement and military organisation in Afghanistan and a group classified as a terrorist organization by the United States, were fundamental in starting the peace process.
The deal allows the U.S. to withdraw troops in exchange for the Taliban’s promise to prohibit Afghanistan to be used as a safe haven for other terrorist organizations in a certain region essential to the Afghan government.
President Biden’s choice comes down to two simple decisions: withdraw all troops by the May 2021 deadline, as former President Donald Trump promised, and risk a Taliban resurgence or stay longer and possibly deter the Taliban’s ability to undermine the Afghanistan government.
To fully understand the consequences of this upcoming decision, former veteran and Chair and Associate Professor of Political Science Dr. Daniel Lake made it apparent that there is no perfect answer to President Biden’s upcoming decision.
“It is very possible that the Taliban will increase its efforts to destabilize the Afghan government,” Lake said, when discussing the possible withdrawal of the United States military.
Keeping American troops in Afghanistan may secure the safety of the government, but it will not allow the U.S. to stop the progress of insurgency or have any essential benefit for America’s national security.
Insurgent groups, such as the Taliban, control more territory in Afghanistan than they did in 2001 when the U.S. invaded. This makes it even harder for the U.S. to deter the Taliban from undermining Afghanistan’s government.
For the United States to actually defeat the Taliban and insurgency groups, they would have to severely increase their involvement in the conflict, which would require even more time and resources. Not to mention, even if these resources were at United States’ disposal, it would be difficult to accomplish a goal that is not essential to American national security.
The withdrawal of the U.S. military from Afghanistan is necessary, but it doesn’t hide the unfortunate truth.
The U.S. doesn’t have the resources or ability to actually prevent the Taliban’s growth, due to the fact that it’s not worth the sacrifice of wasting more money in an unwinnable war.
The U.S. military has been in Afghanistan since 2001 and has not made any progress because the country doesn’t have the necessary resources available to be victorious.
It’s simply time to leave Afghanistan and stop wasting time, money and soldiers in another war.