Taliban’s Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations today news

Taliban’s Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations

The situation Afghanistan Taliban is putting the so-called special relationship between the UK and the u.s under great scrutiny this is why back in January when Joe Biden became president Boris Johnson was the first leader he called and on America’s alliances we also heard this from the secretary of state Anthony blinked we get so much more done with

they than we could without them so we’re making a big push right now to reconnect with our friends and allies the desire to move beyond trump was palpable that was the march in April president Biden announced he’d implement trump’s plans to withdraw from Afghanistan I’ve concluded that it’s time to end America’s longest war it’s time for

American troops to come home the president also said he’d consulted with his allies but the withdrawal wasn’t what the UK wanted it’s not a decision that we’d hoped for but we obviously respect it and it’s clearly an acknowledgment of an evolving u.s strategic posture the UK was soon to have the chance to explore this evolution close up the g7

gathered in Cornwall with Joe Biden the central figure and Boris johnson the host you call it the deep and meaningful relationship whatever you want the indestructible relationship president Biden was equally effusive we affirmed the special relationship as is not said lightly the special relationship between our people that was June also in June the us

Taliban's Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations today news
Taliban’s Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations today news

Biden didn’t call Boris johnson on Monday the urgency of the situation intensified Joe Biden still didn’t call Boris johnson they eventually spoke on Tuesday over 48 hours after the fall of Kabul the next day Boris johnson explained the UK’s position the west could not continue this u.s led mission a mission conceived and executed in support and

defense of America without American logistics without us airpower a mission executed in defense of America was now ending on the date of America’s choosing the 31st of August and going into a g7 meeting on Tuesday the UK was clear it

wanted the date pushed back everyone knows that the wrestling international community wishes to have more time but there are two other people with a vote in that that is the Taliban and the president of the united states and in

In the end, you know both of them to have significant power in that final decision president Biden didn’t change his mind the date stayed and like this, all played out the former head of UK joint forces command general Richard Barrons argues we’ve relegated our security and prosperity and our interest to the will of u.s national politics but is this relegation or

just how it’s always been watching from Washington the North America editor john Sobel wrote that what was happening is a statement of the reality of the special relationship which when push comes to shove and when America is feeling cornered isn’t so very special and in john’s article he thinks back to this moment in 2001 when then UK prime

Minister Tony Blair visited Washington after the 9 11 attacks in the months to come he’d provide UK support for America’s invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan 20 years on he’s had this to say many people as a result of what’s happened in Afghanistan are going to have a deep doubt as to whether we can be relied upon and that is not a good

thing Mr. Blair’s fierce criticism of Joe Biden’s withdrawal also raises a question about whether the UK can rely on the u.s but when the UK foreign secretary Dominic raab was asked today if the u.s refusal to extend that deadline meant the special relationship was over he replied no, of course, it isn’t it matters a huge amount and if that’s the UK perspective

this is u.s state department spokesperson ned price last week we certainly have an extraordinary partner in the British government to back that up Mr price added what I can say is that our coordination with the British government with all of our nato allies has been consistent it has been clear and there has been a consensus on this but that’s only the case

if consensus is the u.s deciding a policy and then the UK and others going along with it because there’s no other option and not because

Taliban's Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations today news

they agree it is a relationship specials one word for it others are being used too well let’s speak to Sebastian Payne why tall editor for the financial times who presents pains politics a podcast you should all subscribe to great to have you on the program Sebastian thanks for your time how would you categorize the relationship at the end of august well it’s the first real split between president bind and prime minister Boris johnson since uh the last u.s election and you know

when president Biden came in he was very much trying to argue that America is back we’re going to reconnect with the old allies and he made sure that the first caller’s present he made to a phone leader was to Boris Johnson and one of his first overseas visits was to the UK and of course you visited the queen at Windsor castle as well so of the symbol and

the pageantry of the special relationship is all there but the question has always been when it comes to a hard policy where’s it going to land and here’s your answer we know that Mr johnson tried to lobby the president to keep a u.s president either military or diplomatic he declined that over several of several months so the personal relationship between

those two is not in the best state but the special relationship as some people call it goes much deeper the fact we share intelligence the fact there are clear military and strategic aims that unite the UK and us they don’t change and I can’t think of a single u.s president that hasn’t fallen out at some point with a UK prime minister so maybe it’s

inevitable the question is where does it go next of course we’ve got the big cop 26 climate summit which Boris johnson was keen to use as a symbol of UK relations being on the same page even sharing the same slogan of back better from the cone of ice pandemic but once again let’s see the policy let’s see if they agree on that as opposed to just the

rhetoric and the sound bites so from what you’re saying we need to wait to see if these tensions are specific to the Afghanistan crisis or symptomatic of something broader indeed and I think obviously there are tensions there’s been no doubt about it and the folks that I’ve spoken to across Whitehall have made it very clear that Boris johnson ben

Wallace the UK defense secretary and others were very unhappy with this decision and but they ultimately can’t do much about it their hands were tied by our president they might not like it I think the key thing to watch now is we get into the run-up to cop 26. um is there a meeting of mines between Boris johnson and joe Biden there should be they’ve adopted very similar policies on achieving net carbon zero they want you the same things for

towards climate change but the question is within terms of nato the west and the military does the UK feel it’s been so burnt by this it can’t rely on America anymore and try to find other allies and it did try to do that that the UK tried to

speak to other nato members and to the NATO itself to form an alternative coalition but that went nowhere so it really exposes what happens if you don’t have the special relationship if you can’t rely on America then it’s just a big yawning gap in British foreign policy and nobody really wants to address that because it’ll be such a

the problematic thing for Brexit Britain I wonder if it’s a yawning gap Sebastian or whether actually what we’re seeing is simply something that’s always been there that us is the more senior uh partner in this relationship it may be

special at times but in terms of seniority there’s no doubt who’s top of the pecking order that’s very true and I think ever since the second world war that has been the case and whether you look at it in terms of sharing nuclear uh missile programs if you look in terms of foreign policy Iraq war you name it across the whole spectrum all the terms

Taliban's Afghanistan takeover puts pressure on UK/US relations today news

nearly dictated to by America and obviously, that’s only going to increase as you know as the geopolitical balance continues to adapt I think the key thing the UK wants to sell is its convening power we’ve still got that seat on the u.n security council a key member of nato one of the biggest military powers within Europe and what Boris

johnson has been trying to sell himself over the past week is saying okay we didn’t like this decision we were forced into it by America but we can still bring people together have a meeting of mind and try to achieve something that way but again what’s actually been achieved here we had that g7 summit which a virtual summit meeting this week which

boys johnson brought together and ultimately they came up with a slightly meanie-mouthed statement that said we’re going to talk to the Taliban about trying to keep those evacuations going it’s not really hard action here and it’s not

something that you again the UK just doing exactly what we are doing on this because they are the dominant military force and every nato member knows it.

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Muddasir Harry

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