UPDATED 1:45 PM PT – Sunday, June 20, 2021
The Biden administration has failed to tell the American people what effects the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan may have. The confusion came into the spotlight on Friday, after Afghan officials warned the Taliban was not interested in negotiating a peace deal with the government.
Pentagon officials announced the U.S. will conduct operations from outside the country, but did not specify any details. Lawmakers have expressed concerns over these uncertainties and slammed the Biden administration for not acting with more urgency .
[Our new bilateral relationship with our Afghan partners is one reason why] we are asking to move overseas contingency operations funding inside the budget. This will add greater transparency, accountability, and predictability to the budgeting process, and frankly, it’s overdue. pic.twitter.com/FF91QTrxLR
— Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III (@SecDef) June 17, 2021
The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a measure repealing the 2002 Iraq War Authorization, which enabled U.S. presidents to authorize military operations without approval from Congress. Biden has provided generalized goals for the U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, but has yet to address future plans for counterterrorism efforts.
Afghan officials warn the withdrawal could empower Taliban forces, which would lead to a bigger surge in violence in the country.