The Biden White House apparently failed to coordinate evacuation efforts with the government of the United Kingdom for more than a day despite repeated attempts by Prime Minister Boris Johnson's office to contact President Joe Biden after the Taliban's takeover of Kabul.
According to the Times of London, "senior [U.K.] military commanders have also not been party to key discussions between the U.S. and the Taliban, so were left in the dark about when they could be forced to pull out."
Meanwhile, the Telegraph reports that "Mr Johnson had been attempting to get Mr Biden on the phone to discuss Kabul falling from Monday morning. The pair eventually talked at close to 10 pm on Tuesday."
White House officials did not respond to the Washington Examiner's inquiries by press time, although the administration did release a readout of Biden and Johnson's call from Tuesday.
The pair of leaders "commended the bravery and professionalism of their military and civilian personnel, who are working shoulder to shoulder in Kabul on the evacuation of their citizens and Afghan nationals who assisted in the war effort," the statement read. "They also discussed the need for continued close coordination among allies and democratic partners on Afghanistan policy going forward, including ways the global community can provide further humanitarian assistance and support for refugees and other vulnerable Afghans."
Biden also spoke with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, from which the White House produced a near-identical readout.
German and British politicians have been highly critical of the Biden administration's handling of both the U.S. troop withdrawal and the ensuing evacuation efforts of American and third-country nationals from Afghanistan in recent days.
A number of Biden administration officials expressed concerns to the Washington Examiner that the Afghanistan situation could do irreparable damage to the president's goals of reestablishing diplomatic ties that the previous administration allegedly let fall by the wayside.
"[Deposed Afghan President Ashraf] Ghani came to Washington and made promises they would be able to hold off the Taliban," one official said. "In hindsight, maybe we shouldn't have believed him, but the president is getting blamed for something that isn't really his fault."
Daniel Hoffman, a former CIA operator and foreign policy expert, told the Washington Examiner that "obviously" Afghanistan will hurt America's foreign policy standing, but he added that it's too soon to determine the damage done to relationships with U.S. allies.
"It's way too early to start making those sort of definitive judgments. I think people need to just take a deep breath here and calm down, call off this administration for a chaotic and disastrous withdrawal that never should have happened in the first place," he said in an interview. "But let's just take a deep breath before we start making pronouncements about what it means for our global or national security, and I'm the first person to be critical of these people for this mess that they got into."
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Original Author: Christian Datoc