How 20 years of conflict let China catch up - by Greg Sheridan for the Australian 17th April 2021

This article begins with these words:


It was a result of muddled thinking, a lack of clear purposes. The project in

Afghanistan morphed from disrupting al-Qa’ida to rebuilding Afghanistan in the image of ourselves without regard to geography or culture.


We never had a relationship of accountability with the Afghan people. A week after I left Afghanistan in 2013 the vast majority of the leaders we were training were killed in a suicide mission.”


Andrew Hastie,now Assistant Defence Minister, in an interview in 2017


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The above article follows this article from the US based Defense News on the 16th April 2021:


Britain’s top general is unhappy about US Afghanistan withdrawal plans

By: Andrew Chuter for US based DefenseNews


LONDON — Britain’s top soldier has voiced his dismay at the announcement by U.S. President Joe Biden that American troops were being pulled out of Afghanistan.

Gen. Nick Carter, the chief of the General Staff, said in an interview with the BBC on April 16 that while he respected the view taken by the Biden administration it was “not a decision we hoped for.”


“It is clearly an acknowledgement of an evolving U.S. strategic posture,” he said.

Carter’s remarks on the Today radio program followed a meeting in London on April 15 between U.K. Defense Secretary Ben Wallace and U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

A British MoD spokesman said Afghanistan and the situation in the Ukraine had been among the issues Wallace discussed with his counterpart.


Biden announced April 14 that the United States was pulling out its remaining 2,500 troops by Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks that sparked the action against the Taliban government in Afghanistan.


Wallace issued a statement about the withdrawal April 14 but made no mention of British disappointment regarding the move.


Carter is the first senior officer or politician here to voice disappointment over the withdrawal decision.


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U.S. Army soldiers return home from a nine-month deployment to Afghanistan on Dec. 10, 2020 at Fort Drum, N.Y. (John Moore/Getty Images)

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