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Afghanistan withdrawal tarnished U.S.’s global reliability: Experts

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KABUL: The United States chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan has damaged the U.S. position as a reliable partner amongst global allies, said top experts at the Reagan National Defense Forum on Saturday.

Iowa Republican Senator Joni Ernst stated during a panel that “U.S. credibility was jeopardized in the last year with the hasty and haphazard withdrawal of Afghanistan.”

Experts are concerned that a global power shift could be at play if other world leaders are skeptical about the reliability of the U.S. to act as a strong partner.

The Biden administration received swift backlash at home and abroad after the Taliban swiftly took over Kabul as the U.S. concluded the 20-year war in Afghanistan over the summer.

Ernst said that during the Halifax International Security Forum last month “many of our traditional allies and partners” pulled her aside and questioned what happened in August. “They are not turning to us and seeing leadership at this moment in time,” she said. “We can’t just continue to promise to be the partner of choice. We have to have action in this area and show the rest of the world that we are the partner of choice,” Ernst added.

The Iowa senator was not alone in her concerns. Former Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush, Karl Rove, said during the panel Saturday that the last two administrations failed to inform the public on the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. 

“There’s a bias on the American public to trust their leaders,” Rove said pointing to a Regan National Defense Forum poll that found 1 in every 5 Americans were not sure the U.S. should have left Afghanistan.

The panelists’ sentiments show a stark break by the Biden administration from the Trump administration’s centrist policies that cut international ties and focused solely on U.S. interests.

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