Veteran foreign correspondent John Simpson claimed in a column on the national broadcaster’s website the former US President was responsible for the Taliban’s victory. He glossed over the fact that current President Joe Biden vowed to maintain Mr Trump’s stance to pull out all US forces – despite having the power to overturn it.
As international forces began withdrawing, the radical Islamist group made their “play for power” and swept aside inept Government forces in numerous cities across the country before taking the capital Kabul this evening.
While many have slammed the administrations of Mr Biden and Boris Johnson for not doing more to help the weak Afghan Government survive, Mr Simpson was unequivocal in who was ultimately responsible.
Writing on the BBC website, he said: “The governments of Afghanistan’s two post-Taliban presidents, Hamid Karzai and Ashraf Ghani, were democratically elected but never strong, and corruption was the system which worked best.
“Nevertheless President Ghani would still be in his palace and the army would be driving round in its expensive Western vehicles, if Donald Trump had not decided that he needed a foreign policy success before the 2020 election.
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During them, Mr Trump and the militants signed an “agreement for bringing peace” to Afghanistan after more than 18 years of conflict.
This involved the US and Nato allies withdrawing all troops within 14 months if the militants upheld their end of the deal.
Speaking at the time Mr Trump said it had been a “long and hard journey”, adding: “It’s time after all these years to bring our people back home.”
The agreement banned the Taliban from letting al-Qaeda or any other extremist group operating in the areas they control.
Talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban were due to follow.
But sensing its weakness, the militants opted to take the country by force.
Since entering Kabul earlier today, US-backed Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has fled – effectively ceding power to the Taliban.
Meanwhile Western powers are scrambling planes and troops to get thousands of foreign nationals out of the country.
Thousands of Afghan nationals have also rushed to the Pakistan border in a bid to escape Islamist rule.
Commenting on the situation, Mr Trump criticised his successor, saying: “What Joe Biden has done with Afghanistan is legendary.
“It will go down as one of the greatest defeats in American history.”