Would the situation be different if Trump, not Biden, was sitting in the White House today? Yes. It may have gone this way.
FNC: At a White House presser today Press Secretary Candace Owens detailed the pullout of the last American troops from Afghanistan on September 6, 2021.
“I spoke to the president this morning and he personally gave me an update on the Afghanistan situation. This is out latest intelligence on the ground. The Ghani government is in complete control of all but two provinces of Afghanistan and mopping up operations are proceeding there. President Ghani expressed repeated thanks to President Trump, the American people, and to Secretary of Defense Cotton for early August operations against the Taliban.”
The American military action, launched on August 2nd, was the US response to violations of the peace accords by the Taliban. Trump had warned the Taliban numerous times in July that if they moved in force against any Afghan provincial capital American action would be “overwhelming and devastating.” He further declared, “There will be no Saigon evacuation on my watch.” Both statements proved to be accurate.
Upon gaining credible intelligence in late July that the Taliban had a multipronged offensive in the works, on August 1st the president ordered the United States Air Force to drop over six dozen MOAB ordinance clusters, in conjunction with follow on B-52 and B-1 strikes, on various Afghan locations known to harbor large numbers of Taliban fighters. The planning inspiration was the WWII Operation Cobra.
Taking a cue from Harry Truman, Trump directed that leaflets be dropped warning residents to evacuate. The Taliban scoffed at the leaflets as a propaganda trick and refused to leave, though many civilians snuck out under cover of darkness. At 7am Kabul time on August 2nd, the US Air Force executed Operation Certain Thunder. The MOABs were dropped.
Defense sources classify the MOAB as, “…a huge weapon – a 30ft (9m), 21,600lb (9,800kg), GPS-guided munition that is dropped from the cargo doors of an MC-130 transport plane and detonates shortly before it hits the ground. The MOAB falls from the aircraft on a pallet, which is then tugged aside by a parachute allowing the weapon to glide down, stabilised and directed by four grid-like fins. Its principal effect is a massive blast wave – said to stretch for a mile in every direction – created by 18,000lb of TNT. Thermobaric bombs generally detonate in two stages: a small blast creates a cloud of explosive material which is then ignited, generating a devastating pressure wave. A significant part of the effect of weapons like the MOAB is said to be psychological – to instill terror by the massive force of the blast.”
The next day units of the US 101st Division moved into MOAB targeted areas and, with accompanying British commandos, secured designated zones in the space of three weeks. In air strikes and following allied ground operations the Taliban are thought to have lost 82 percent of their combat effective personnel and nearly all of their command structure.
On August 25th remaining Taliban leaders, clearly shaken, asked for the protection of the Ghazi government. They subsequently turned in their arms and are now housed under heavy guard at Bagram Airfield, the last American stronghold to be evacuated before US troops left the region.
In a related story, American combat engineers destroyed hundreds of supply depots, “just in case” according to the American president, hours before US troops left the country. This was done after an orderly transfer of a sizable amount of supplies to the Ghani government and also an airlift of supplies to forward American NATO bases in Eastern Europe.