Biden Addresses Nation On Afghanistan Withdrawal
Updated August 16, 2021 at 2:17 PM ET
President Biden will address the nation on Monday as more U.S. forces are on their way to Afghanistan to help with the evacuation of American personnel and allies.
It will be the first time Biden has spoken publicly since the Taliban moved into Kabul, Afghanistan's capital.
The president, who has been following the crisis overseas from Camp David, returned to the White House on Monday afternoon. He is planning to address the public from the East Room at 3:45 p.m. ET.
Biden's remarks come as his top allies defend the administration in the face of increasing criticism — from both parties — over how the crisis has unfolded.
Republican lawmakers and some Democrats have criticized the administration's withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.
"This is President Biden's Saigon moment," House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., said Sunday on CBS' Face the Nation, referring to the chaotic departure from Vietnam in 1975. "And, unfortunately, it was very predictable. It seems like many in President Biden's intelligence community got this devastatingly wrong."
Republicans have also criticized Biden for remaining at Camp David through the weekend, out of public view and away from reporters.
On Monday morning, national security adviser Jake Sullivan argued that the United States succeeded in its mission to hold those responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and that remaining in the country was not sustainable.
"Despite the fact that we spent 20 years and tens of billions of dollars to give the best equipment, the best training and the best capacity to the Afghan national security forces, we could not give them the will," Sullivan said on NBC. "And they ultimately decided that they would not fight for Kabul and they would not fight for the country."
Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.