US intelligence agencies have warned the Biden administration that if the United States withdraws its military presence from Afghanistan under current circumstances, the nation would be at severe risk of falling under the control of the people who live there.
A New York Times article titled “Officials Try to Sway Biden Using Intelligence on Potential for Taliban Takeover of Afghanistan” warns that an intelligence assessment has predicted that if “U.S. troops leave before any deal between the Taliban and the Afghan government, the militant group will take over much of the country.”
“The intelligence estimate predicted that the Taliban would relatively swiftly expand their control over Afghanistan, suggesting that the Afghan security forces remain fragile despite years of training by the American military and billions of dollars in U.S. funding,” NYT reports.
Breaking News: A U.S. intelligence report said the Taliban are poised to take power in Afghanistan within two or three years after the withdrawal of international forces. Some officials are using it to urge President Biden not to withdraw troops. https://t.co/OUBn2TmDxF
— The New York Times (@nytimes) March 26, 2021
The New York Times, which has consistently supported all US wars including the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, informs us the Taliban has been “stalling” to avoid signing a power-sharing deal with the existing government in Afghanistan.
“The Biden administration is making a final effort before May 1 to show progress in slow-moving negotiations between the Taliban and the Afghan government in Doha, Qatar,” NYT reports. “The Taliban, according to American officials, are stalling.”
And, I mean, why wouldn’t they? As Defense Priorities policy director Ben Friedman puts it, “If this assessment is right, and the Taliban could take most of Afghanistan if US forces left, and they want that, why sign a deal limiting themselves to less? Or why not sign to get the US out and renege? Keeping US forces there is just a delaying tactic.”
If the most powerful faction in Afghanistan wants power and has the ability to simply take it, they stand nothing to gain by signing a power-sharing agreement with a faction that is incapable of holding power.