Fear in Afghanistan of what's to come: U.S. urged to steer clear of Kabul Airport
U.S. President Joe Biden stands firm on his decision to withdraw troops. He is confident that the Taliban will have a legitimate government if they meet conditions.
The scenes and photos of what is happening in Afghanistan after the victory of the Taliban continue to be the ones of a desperate population, risking their lives to flee the country. It is inexplicable to the world that after 20 years of war, the Taliban, with very little international support due to their religious orthodoxy, quickly took power in a country that is strategically important for the Western World.
The center of criticism against the new Taliban regime is its oppression of women, contrary to the assurances of spokesmen that this time they will be receptive to the opposition.
However, there are already reports of women being banned from working in radio stations in the province of Ghazni, in the southeast of the country. It was also reported that joint classes for men and women were suspended in universities and other educational centers in Herat, western Afghanistan.
As a symptom of what is expected, local television channels stopped broadcasting movies and music.
A BBC report to the world recently gave an account of what is happening in the capital. Its correspondent, Secunder Kermani, said that chaos is absolute at Kabul airport. Nevertheless, in the rest of the capital the picture seems to be returning to normal.
"There is more traffic on the streets and more people, although not as there usually are. Particularly, there are fewer women. I have seen some who are not necessarily wearing the burqa that completely covers them," he said.
The biggest fear is for what lies ahead, "in the days and months ahead the Taliban will impose tighter restrictions on women," the BBC journalist noted.
On Saturday, Aug. 21, the United States reiterated to its nationals not to approach to the airport in Kabul in an attempt to leave the country.
There has even been talk of communications between U.S. military and Taliban spokesmen to facilitate the evacuation of U.S. citizens. This was announced by John Kirby, spokesman for the Department of Defense, who assured that the purpose is "to evacuate as many people as possible in the shortest possible time."
In the same sense, General William Taylor indicated that 5,800 military personnel are participating in the operation to guarantee the safe evacuation of U.S. citizens.
On this point, Biden told reporters on Friday, Aug. 20 that the U.S. has removed 13,000 people in one week.
"This evacuation mission is dangerous. It involves risks to our armed forces and is being conducted under difficult circumstances. I cannot promise what the result will be or that it will be without risk of loss," the president warned.
Biden has defended his decision to withdraw troops and he takes responsibility. He has even asked reporters, "Do you want your children to die? For what?"
In Kabul, the Taliban are seeking to install a new government, once Mullah Abdulghani Baradar, one of their main leaders, arrives in the capital.