Biden Plans to Withdraw All Troops From Afghanistan by Sept. 11

April 13, 2021James R. Webb
Afghanistan withdrawal 9/11

US Marine Sgt. Wilfredo Rios, a section leader with 3rd Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, signals the driver of a mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicle to stop during a security patrol in Nad Ali, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Oct. 7, 2014. US Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John A. Martinez Jr., courtesy of DVIDS.

According to The Washington Post, President Joe Biden will announce this week that a withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan will be completed by Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attack that spurred America’s longest war.

The decision, which is expected to be announced Wednesday, will keeps thousands of US troops in the country beyond the May 1 exit deadline set forth by the Doha agreement, which was signed by representatives of both the Trump administration and the Taliban last year.

Afghanistan withdrawal deadline 9/11
US Marines with Task Force Southwest (TFSW) conduct a combined-arms night range at Camp Shorbak, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Feb. 19, 2019. The range demonstrated the strategic and tactical strengths of the new battle position designed by Marines with TFSW for the 215th Maiwand Corps. US Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Victoria Ross, courtesy of DVIDS.

While violence toward US personnel is down since the Doha agreement went into effect, the Taliban has vowed to renew attacks on Americans if they remain in Afghanistan past the May 1 deadline.

“If we break the May 1st deadline negotiated by the previous administration with no clear plan to exit, we will be back at war with the Taliban, and that was not something President Biden believed was in the national interest,” a person familiar with the deliberations told The Washington Post. “We’re going to zero troops by September.”

The Biden administration recently completed a review of US policy and options in Afghanistan and around the world. As a result of the review, the administration is deciding to shift US strategic interests away from the post-9/11 counterinsurgency campaigns, to newer strategic concerns, such as increasing military competition with China. 

Afghanistan Withdrawal 9/11
An Afghanistan Uniformed Police post provides security for the Atghar bazaar, Zabul province, Afghanistan, Dec. 6, 2011. Security in Atghar is a cooperative effort with the Afghanistan Uniformed Police and the Afghanistan National Army. US Army photo by Spc. Jason Nolte, courtesy of DVIDS.

“Afghanistan just does not rise to the level of those other threats at this point,” the person told The Washington Post. “That does not mean we’re turning away from Afghanistan. We are going to remain committed to the government, remain committed diplomatically. But in terms of where we will be investing force posture, our blood and treasure, we believe that other priorities merit that investment.”

John Sopko, the Department of Defense’s special inspector for Afghanistan reconstruction, warned Congress last month that US withdrawal without a peace agreement in place would be “a disaster” and mean government collapse. Others have warned of civil war, as regional warlords have amassed and armed their own forces.

Retired Gen. Colin Powell, former secretary of state and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the decision to leave was past due. “I’d say we’ve done all we can do … What are those troops being told they’re there for? It’s time to bring it to an end.”

Read Next: ‘Brothers in Arms’ — An Unforgettable Family Reunion in Afghanistan, and the Meaning of Military Service

James R. Webb
James R. Webb

James Webb served as a US Marine infantryman from 2005 to 2010, completing a combat tour in Iraq. He’s worked as a freelance writer and photojournalist covering US troops in Afghanistan, and Webb spent more than two years in the US Senate as a military legislative assistant and as the personal representative of a member on the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

More from Coffee or Die Magazine
Soflete: How This Veteran-Led Company is Changing Military Fitness Culture

In 2014, Soflete’s co-founders saw workout overkill hurting their peers as they prepared for selecti...

glock 19
Glock 19: Origin Story of a Legendary Pistol

Get to know the Glock 19 — how it works, who uses it, and why it’s one of the most popular handguns in the US.

afghan soldier asylum
Afghan Soldier Who Helped US Weathers Injuries, Uncertainty in Asylum Bid

Afghan soldier who assisted the U.S. now faces uncertainty in bid for asylum.

The Dirty Dozen
‘The Dirty Dozen’: Meet D-Day’s Real Rogue Commandos

The Dirty Dozen was based on a real team of rule-breaking elite paratroopers who jumped into France ahead of D-Day.

d-day 79th anniversary
Normandy Marks D-Day's 79th Anniversary, Honors World War II Veterans

This year's D-Day tribute to the young soldiers who died in Normandy is not only a chance to honor t...

f-22 raptor
The F-22: The Superiority Fighter That Never Shot Down an Enemy Plane

The F-22 Raptor was designed to fight next-gen Russian fighters. So far its only air-to-air kills are a Chinese balloon and a UFO.

Battle of Midway
The Battle of Midway: Where America's March to Victory Began

The US Navy outwitted and outfought the Imperial Japanese Navy to secure victory in the do-or-die Battle of Midway.

  • About Us
  • Privacy Policy
  • Careers
Contact Us
  • Request a Correction
  • Write for Us
  • General Inquiries
© 2023 Coffee or Die Magazine. All Rights Reserved