THEn September 11, 2001, we were all Americans. Twenty years later, the United States has never appeared so lonely. The debacle in Afghanistan – the precipitation of the American withdrawal, the collapse of the Afghan army in the face of the brutal acceleration of the advance of the Taliban and, finally, the deadly attack of August 26 by the Islamic State organization at Kabul Airport – tragically ends two decades of stalemate in the “war on terror”. In just six months, Joe Biden ruined his efforts to mend the bond with his allies, damaged by four years administration.
The new tenant of the White House had announced, from his presidential campaign, his desire to close this “Endless war”. The withdrawal, promised before the symbolic date of September 11, was to mark the opening of a new American chapter. This project already initiated by Donald Trump, who had signed an agreement with the Taliban, could have achieved consensus. But the images of the stampede of the army, chaos at the airport and the ballet of helicopters over the Afghan capital were a stark reminder of Saigon and the defeat of Vietnam in 1975. A new humiliation for Washington, after the collapse of the Manhattan Twin Towers.
Muslim countries hit hard
The attacks of September 11 had first resulted – like Pearl Harbor in 1941 – in a declaration of war by the Americans, who led a coalition against terrorism. But, while the victory against the Taliban was final and bin Laden on the run, the United States then embarked on a crusade against Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, justified by a lie: the existence of weapons of destruction. massive. The use of torture of prisoners of war and global surveillance in the name of counterterrorism has weakened democracies and international organizations like the United Nations and NATO. And the world has changed, to the delight of Beijing, Moscow, Tehran and Ankara, who are now trying to recover the positions abandoned by the West.
While the Islamist attacks have moved away from American soil, they have hit Europe hard, and even more so the Muslim countries in the Middle East, in Africa and, of course, in Afghanistan. This is where the jihadists have claimed most of their 180,000 victims in twenty years, sometimes despite the presence of international forces. It is on these lands that they regenerate, capitalizing on this great disruption of the world.
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