Nikki Haley: US completely surrendered to the Taliban

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley; photo credit: Department of State

India-US strategic partnership more critical than ever in containing Taliban preventing terrorism, says Ro Khanna

Leading Indian American Republican leader Nikki Haley has blasted the Biden administration for its execution in withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, saying it “completely surrendered to the Taliban.”

“They’re not negotiating with the Taliban. They’ve completely surrendered to the Taliban,” Haley, first Indian American to get cabinet rank as US Ambassador to the United Nations under former President Donald Trump, said on Sunday.

She was responding to a question on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” if she agreed with the Biden administration’s assertion that it is not negotiating with the Taliban as it continues to evacuate American citizens and allies.

“They surrendered Bagram Air Force Base, which was a major NATO hub. They surrendered $85 billion worth of equipment and weapons that we should have gotten out of there,” Haley said.

“They have surrendered the American people and actually withdrew our troops before they withdrew the American people. And they’ve abandoned our Afghan allies who kept people like my husband safe,” she said.

Read: Afghanistan: a country of million tragedies (August 19, 2021)

However, Haley also acknowledged that the Biden administration must now do “whatever it takes to get our Americans out. This is an unbelievable scenario where literally the Taliban has our Americans held hostage.”

Haley also shot back at arguments that the withdrawal from Afghanistan was put in place by the Trump administration and that blame must be shared between Biden and his predecessor.

“Under four years of Trump, Afghanistan was safe. We made sure that we kept terrorism at bay, and we came from a position of strength,” Haley said.

“There are times where you have to negotiate with the devil, but you negotiate with the devil from a point of strength. You don’t do it from a point of weakness. We literally have no leverage right now with the Taliban.”

Haley called on the Biden administration to extend the Aug. 31 deadline for evacuations and said the US must make sure that the Taliban knows they’ve got to let people into the airport in Kabul safely.

“We’ve got to get our Americans out. We’ve got to stay true to those Afghan allies that we made promises to. And we’ve got to make sure we do this in a very strong way going forward,” she said.

Expressing her apprehensions on Afghanistan, Haley said, “You’re going to have sex slaves. You’re going to have child marriages. You’re going to have kids that are — girls that are no longer allowed in school.

“You’re going to have our Americans. Any that are there will be in danger. And all of our Afghan allies will be killed if we don’t do something,” she said.

Meanwhile, Indian American lawmaker Ro Khanna has said the strategic partnership between India and the US is more critical than ever in containing the Taliban and preventing terrorism.

“The US-India strategic partnership is now even more critical in containing the Taliban and preventing terrorism,” Khanna, who represents Silicon Valley in the House of Representatives, said in a tweet.

Khanna, Democratic Vice Chair of the Indian American Congressional Caucus, said he will be working with the leadership of the India Caucus to strengthen the India-US partnership on national security.

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