Headline RoundupAugust 31st, 2021

Biden Defends Afghanistan Withdrawal After Ending War Overseas

Summary from the AllSides News Team

President Joe Biden defended his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan during a national address on Tuesday afternoon, insisting that the Aug. 31 deadline was "designed to save American lives." The final U.S. military transport plane departed Afghanistan on Monday night, formally marking the end of America’s longest war. Biden reiterated that the conflict "should've ended long ago" as the nation no longer had a "clear purpose" for being stationed in Afghanistan. He then praised the U.S. military for "their execution of the dangerous retrograde from Afghanistan as scheduled," calling the withdrawal an “extraordinary success.” As for the reported 100 to 200 Americans that still remain in Afghanistan, Biden said "there is no deadline" to get them out "if they want to come out."

Coverage from across the spectrum highlighted how a large majority of Americans have been critical of Biden's withdrawal strategy. Right-rated outlets were more likely to highlight how Biden "pinned partial blame" on former President Donald Trump for the chaotic nature of the withdrawal. Left-rated outlets were more likely to mention how Trump signed an agreement last year with the Taliban for a U.S. withdrawal by May 1, 2021.

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