Monday will mark the one-year anniversary of the Taliban taking control of Afghanistan.
On the eve of this anniversary, since the timeline nearly coincides with the deaths of 13 American soldiers in the capital city of Kabul (explosion at airport), retired four-star Gen. Jack Keane said Afghanistan has subsequently devolved into a "sanctuary of terrorism."
While speaking with Fox News on Sunday morning, Keane said, "The very reason [U.S. military forces] went there, the very reason we stayed there for 20 years, [was] to ensure that terrorists did not rise again, attack the American people," said Keane. "And we're right back where we started."
The "sanctuary of terrorism" comment, according to Keane, was exacerbated by al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahri's recent presence in Kabul, prior to being killed by a CIA drone strike.
His death might have been a triumph for counterterrorism experts, but it also means the Taliban had been harboring/protecting al-Qaida in Afghanistan, Keane explained.
Retired since 2003, Keane has been the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, personally awarded by then-President Donald Trump. During his time in office, Trump sought the regular counsel of Keane on military matters abroad.
For his Fox News appearance, Keane characterized the current state of Afghanistan as "tragic" and "preventable."
"What did this decision get us?" Keane rhetorically asked, regarding the U.S. withdrawal.
Keane then added, "It got us the Taliban in charge, again, providing sanctuary to the al-Qaida, and so al-Zawahri's killing resurrected the fact that he's living in a Taliban house, in a neighborhood that I've been to many times where senior Taliban leaders are in residence."
President Biden's job-approval ratings declined after the controversial Afghanistan withdrawal.
In the days leading up to the U.S. exit last August, Biden scolded White House reporters for taking such a negative historical view of the Taliban takeover of that country.
Around this time, Biden said that, unlike the Vietnam War of the 1960s and ’70s, there wouldn't be any images of U.S. citizens "being lifted off the roof" of an embassy building, via helicopter.
Shortly after, though, images and videos were captured at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, with U.S. citizens being rescued by helicopter.
Women's rights in Afghanistan have seemingly not progressed over the last year.
On Saturday, the French media outlet AFP reported that roughly 40 women protesters were chased and beaten by Taliban fighters in Kabul.
The women were reportedly demanding "bread, work, and freedom," while marching in front of the Education Ministry building.
Other marchers chanted, "Justice! Justice! We're fed up with ignorance," according to AFP.
Various reports also say that Taliban fighters used the "butts" of rifles to injure or intimidate that group of marchers.
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