Defiant and Defensive, a President Known for Empathy Takes a Cold-Eyed Approach to Afghanistan Debacle
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August 16, 2021
With Taliban fighters poised to rout the U.S.-backed Afghan government — and with it the 20-year, multibillion-dollar effort to root Western-style democracy in Afghan soil — President Biden over the weekend first offered compassion for those left behind.
"Our hearts go out to the brave Afghan men and women who are now at risk," he said in a statement late Saturday as insurgents closed in on Kabul.
But then Biden pivoted to the cold calculation behind his decision to pull the plug on a mission that has cost more than 2,000 American lives.
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