by WorldTribune Staff, August 24, 2021
The Taliban won’t extend the Aug. 31 deadline for the withdrawal of all U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the terrorists who are now running the country will accept “no extensions” of the Aug. 31 deadline.
The Taliban’s announcement came after CIA Director William Burns met secretly with the Taliban’s top figure in Kabul on Monday.
Burns’s meeting with Taliban leader Abdul Ghani Baradar appears to be the highest-level engagement between the Biden administration and the Taliban to date, reports say.
The CIA declined to comment on the meeting.
It was the CIA chief’s second visit to Afghanistan. Weeks after taking office in March, he traveled to Kabul for talks with the now-defunct government of President Ashraf Ghani in the wake of Joe Biden’s announcement that he would withdraw remaining U.S. troops from Afghanistan.
“U.S. officials have warned that without the support of U.S. military bases and logistics, it will be significantly more difficult for the CIA and its sister spy agencies to detect and deter mounting terrorist threats emanating from Afghanistan,” the Wall Street Journal noted in an Aug. 24 report.
Related: Kash Patel: Trump would never have given up Bagram Air Base, August 22, 2021
The Pentagon said the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan will go to “zero” at the Aug. 31 deadline. In addition to the 6,000 U.S. troops at Kabul’s airport, there are dozens of armored vehicles and U.S. Army Apache gunships.
The Taliban spokesman said: “They have opportunity, they [U.S.] have all the resources, they can take all the people that belong to them.”
The spokesman also said the Taliban will no longer allow Afghans to leave. The U.S. has so far evacuated thousands of Afghans, with a particular focus on the special immigrant visa applicants.
A team which is arranging privately chartered flights to get Americans and Afghans out of the country said the Biden administration has been an “impediment” to the effort.
“What I am witnessing everyday is the very best and the very worst of America,” Robert Stryk, who is helping to lead the team, told The Daily Caller. “I have seen the humanity of private citizens who are contacting me and pledging their time, monies, and in some cases their lives to bring our citizens and these Afghan patriots out of harm’s way, while at the time personally experiencing the Biden administration’s abject failure to protect its citizens and those Afghans that fought and worked alongside of us.”
“The Brits and South Africans have been f—–g awesome and heroic in getting people through the Mil Gate,” Stryk said.
Former Republican Virginia Congressman Scott Taylor, who served 8 years as a Navy SEAL, joined Stryk in coordinating the private evacuations from Kabul.
Taylor echoed Stryk’s frustrations with Team Biden, telling the Daily Caller: “The South Africans, the Brits, the Qataris, their ambassadors have been getting safe passage for people to the airport.” Taylor described the lack of support from Biden as “frustrating” and “a massive f–k up.”