Trump says Afghanistan will be ‘killing terrorists’ in 2020
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The former President, 75, claimed it was time to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan last year and suggested the Taliban could defend the region against terrorism. The clip of a February 2020 briefing re-emerged as the ex-POTUS launches a barrage of criticism against his successor in the White House.
Trump has issued a dozen statements about Joe Biden’s conduct in relation to Afghanistan in the last five days.
The most recent one reads: “What took place yesterday in Afghanistan made our withdrawal from Vietnam look like child’s play.
“Perhaps in World history, there has never been a withdrawal operation that has been handled so disastrously.
“A President who has been illegitimately elected has brought great shame, in many ways, to our Country!”
But, although the 45th President seems to be talking tough on the Taliban, Trump’s comments in the Oval Office appear somewhat different.
In February 2020, just months after a Trump-Taliban meeting was scheduled to be held on September 11, the ex-President lauded the prospect of the Islamist insurgents seeing off the nation’s terrorist threat.
“I’ll be meeting personally with Taliban leaders in the not-too-distant future,” he said at a White House press conference on February 29.
Trump continued: “And we’ll be very much hoping that they will be doing what they say they’re going to be doing.
“They will be killing terrorists.
“They will be killing some very bad people.
“They will keep that fight going.”
Trump went on to praise the work of the US military in the region, including against ISIS.
“We’ve had tremendous success in Afghanistan and the killing of terrorists but it’s time, after all these years, to bring our people back home,” he said.
But Trump then said he hopes the Taliban and surrounding Middle Eastern countries would take on terrorist groups in the region.
He said: “Now it’s time for somebody else to do that work and that’ll be the Taliban and it could be surrounding countries.”
However, he also warned: “If bad things happen we will go back.
“Let the people know we’ll go back and we will go back so fast that we will go back with a force like nobody has ever seen.
“I don’t think that will be necessary, I hope it’s not necessary.”
During the ex-President’s Save America tour, he told loyal supporters in Wellington, Ohio: “I started the process. All the troops are coming back home. They couldn’t stop the process. 21 years is enough, don’t we think?
Later, he said Afghanistan’s Government would only last with continued US presence.
Trump asked his supporters: “What are we going to say ‘we will stay for another 21 years?’”
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“The whole thing is ridiculous.”
But in one statement, the former President has suggested he does not oppose the withdrawal from Afghanistan.
He said: “It’s not that we left Afghanistan. It’s the grossly incompetent way we left!”
The ex-President has used the ongoing crisis to fire several broadsides against his successor.
In his recent statements, Trump has accused Biden of presiding over “one of the greatest defeats in American history”.
He has rubbished what he maintains was a “corrupt” election in 2020.
Trump has even used it as an opportunity to challenge President Biden’s coronavirus policy.
He said: “First Joe Biden surrendered to COVID and it has come roaring back.
“Then he surrendered to the Taliban, who has quickly overtaken Afghanistan and destroyed confidence in American power and influence.
“The outcome in Afghanistan, including the withdrawal, would have been totally different if the Trump Administration had been in charge.
“Who or what will Joe Biden surrender to next? Someone should ask him, if they can find him.”
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