US strikes deal w/ Taliban to remove troops from Afghanistan (1 Viewer)

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Heathen

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Surprised I didn't see it posted anywhere. And to preface -- I know there are too many contextual complexities to name regarding this.

Props to this administration for pushing to get this done. Endless war shouldn't be what American citizens view as 'normal'.

This would be a huge win for Americans and Afghanis if this works out as planned:

The US and Nato allies have agreed to withdraw all troops within 14 months if the militants uphold the deal.

President Trump said it had been a "long and hard journey" in Afghanistan. "It's time after all these years to bring our people back home," he said.

Talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban are due to follow.

Under the agreement, the militants also agreed not to allow al-Qaeda or any other extremist group to operate in the areas they control.
 

bdb13

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I will say that even if the Biden administration made mistakes in not getting people out faster before the Afghan government/military collapse, I do believe they've made urgent and competent decisions since the situation became critical. I don't think you get 100,000+ people in a weeks time without doing so. This could have been so much worse and would definitely have been so if Trump were still in office.
Getting 100,000+ people out of there under these conditions this quickly is pretty incredible, for sure.
 

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an all-volunteer group of American veterans of the Afghan war launched a final daring mission on Wednesday night dubbed the "Pineapple Express" to shepherd hundreds of at-risk Afghan elite forces and their families to safety
 

bdb13

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Her tweet is pretty misleading in my opinion, from that exact transcript:

Taylor said:
Yeah. I don’t think they are sharing information, as you would say in that question of, like we were giving information. What information is very important right now is at the ground level to insure that as people approach checkpoints, that those Taliban checkpoint leaders have and understand who’s coming. What documentation they’re supposed to have. Because that’s really important for us to insure the time that people are not in areas and just staying there for long periods of time. The commanders on the ground continue to coordinate how do we continue to increase that through checkpoints, through gates, to get on HKIA as fast as we can. That’s very safe to get them there. Thanks.
So they provide information to the Taliban so that they will "understand who's coming." Just saying, it's a major reach for her to take just what he said there and decide it's enough to summarily dismiss the accusation.
 
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DaveXA

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Her tweet is pretty misleading in my opinion, from that exact transcript:


So they provide information to the Taliban so that they will "understand who's coming." Just saying, it's a major reach for her to take just what he said there and decide it's enough to summarily dismiss the accusation.
That's exactly what I thought. They said they didn't give names...except...they did. Just feels like the argument that a Covid vaccine passport wasn't a passport, but a piece of paper, in an unrelated tweet.
 

MT15

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I disagree. What he said was that they were sharing what types of documentation the people would be bringing. I think he clearly says they were not sharing information about specific people, but what types of documentation they should expect to see that would be valid.
 

bdb13

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I disagree. What he said was that they were sharing what types of documentation the people would be bringing. I think he clearly says they were not sharing information about specific people, but what types of documentation they should expect to see that would be valid.
I don't believe that is at all clear especially combined with the wording of this from the state department:

MR PRICE: What I can say is that the idea that we are providing names or personally identifiable information to the Taliban in a way that exposes anyone to additional risk, that is simply wrong. Simply wrong. What we have developed, what we have been doing, we have implemented effective tactics – and again, you need only look at the evacuation metrics in recent days for a proof point of the effectiveness. But we have developed and implemented effective tactics to be in a position to facilitate the safe passage of individuals to the Kabul airport.

That sounds to me like they're saying that they've provided names in some fashion but in their judgment have not put people at additional risk by doing so.

But OK, even if it's not necessarily that, that I'm aware of no evidence has been offered (nor should it be at the point, quite possibly) to prove that the story is false other than this so here we're going entirely on the government's word which I'd argue in and of itself is not evidence at all that the claim is untrue, and I believe that a reporter most interested in the truth in a situation like this would not already be calling for the correction of other reporters' columns and reports at this early point in a developing story unless there was some decent evidence to the contrary.
 

MT15

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I don't believe that is at all clear especially combined with the wording of this from the state department:


That sounds to me like they're saying that they've provided names in some fashion but in their judgment have not put people at additional risk by doing so.

But OK, even if it's not necessarily that, that I'm aware of no evidence has been offered (nor should it be at the point, quite possibly) to prove that the story is false other than this so here we're going entirely on the government's word which I'd argue in and of itself is not evidence at all that the claim is untrue, and I believe that a reporter most interested in the truth in a situation like this would not already be calling for the correction of other reporters' columns and reports at this early point in a developing story unless there was some decent evidence to the contrary.

Okay, what sort of decent evidence exists that he is lying when he says they are not providing “names or personally identifiable information” to the Taliban? Honest question, I don’t know.

I get your skepticism, I truly do, but are you applying the same level of skepticism to the reporting?
 

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bdb13

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Okay, what sort of decent evidence exists that he is lying when he says they are not providing “names or personally identifiable information” to the Taliban? Honest question, I don’t know.

I get your skepticism, I truly do, but are you applying the same level of skepticism to the reporting?
Possibly not, which is fair. I'll be more conscious of it here.

I just didn't appreciate the way Rubin was so entirely dismissive of it there without a better explanation as to why that's correct.
 

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Possibly not, which is fair. I'll be more conscious of it here.

I just didn't appreciate the way Rubin was so entirely dismissive of it there without a better explanation as to why that's correct.
Yeah, I thought it was a long winded way of answering a simple question. As with a lot of things, I think the suspicion that there's more to the story is a legitimate one.
 

MT15

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NYT has apparently issued a correction on their story about the US military giving names of afghans to the Taliban.

 

bdb13

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NYT has apparently issued a correction on their story about the US military giving names of afghans to the Taliban.

That is a rather nuanced correction by the New York Times there though. It almost reads to me as a distinction without much of a difference.

I haven't seen any updates, were the students able to get out?
 

bdb13

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Sounds terrible and more and more hopeless for these people

The administration was warned early and often about the 600 or so employees, contractors and family members who worked for U.S.-sponsored news organizations under the umbrella of the U.S. Agency for Global Media, a federal agency funded by Congress. They include journalists working for the Voice of America (VOA) and Radio Free Europe/Radio LIberty (RFE/RL) who have worked in Afghanistan for years — at great personal risk. The Taliban has killed four RFE/FL journalists since 2016 through suicide bomb attacks, and the company’s journalists routinely receive death threats from the extremists.

Now, the leaders of these organizations say the State Department promised to get their vulnerable people out of the country before the Aug. 31 troop withdrawal deadline, only to later renege on that promise amid the chaos and confusion at the Kabul airport. They describe a harrowing ordeal for these Afghans, who were repeatedly turned away by our own troops at the airport gates and whose personal information was handed over to the same Taliban fighters they are fleeing from.
...
On Sunday, national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on CNN that all the groups the U.S. government prioritized for departure made it to the planes. But that’s simply not true, according to other officials and sources I’ve spoken with in the groups that scrambled to save their staffers over the last three weeks. Those organizations include the American University of Afghanistan, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the National Endowment for Democracy, the Humane Society and several other civil society organizations that are now facing the worst-case scenario for their people.

The USAGM journalists and staffers had every connection a group of potential evacuees could wish for, and their expectations were correspondingly high. After all, the U.S. government had moved heaven and earth to get Afghan journalists from private U.S. news organizations to safety. Surely, they assumed, it wouldn’t abandon the reporters for whom it was directly responsible. But they were wrong.
...
Several senior administration officials repeatedly reassured RFE/FL not to worry, Fly told me, but even top level officials couldn’t overcome the utter dysfunction and lack of communication between Washington and Kabul. At one point, Fly was on the phone with senior military officials who were trying to admit the group, waiting just outside the gate, but the message simply never got to the soldiers standing at the gate, and the group returned home.
...
In the final days before the Aug. 31 deadline, the State Department told USAGM their people would be included among the last tranche of locally employed U.S. government staff, who had been given special priority at that time, Fly said. But as the deadline came and went, the USAGM employees simply never got the call to come to the airport.

A senior State Department official told me that the USAGM group “was until the very last moment the highest priority,” but the clock just ran out. The State Department was barely able to bring out its locally employed staff by the Aug. 31 deadline, the official said, adding that the high threat of another terrorist attack also hampered the evacuation in its final days.
 
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