Announcing the withdrawal of US troops on Wednesday, 14 April, President Biden said: “We cannot continue the cycle of extending or expanding our military presence in Afghanistan hoping to create the ideal conditions for our withdrawal, expecting a different result.”
That figure compares with the 15,051 Soviet personnel who were killed in Afghanistan between 1979 and 1989.
When the Soviet Army entered Afghanistan in December 1979 and installed Babrak Karmal as President and new leader of the communist Democratic Republic of Afghanistan the Cold War was at its height.
US Gets Into Bed With The Mujahideen
The move was automatically opposed by the US, which feared Afghanistan would be a domino which would be followed by Pakistan, allowing the Soviets a vital warm water port on the Indian Ocean.
Ignoring the growing rise of fundamentalist Islam – students in Iran had recently taken over the US Embassy and declared America was “the Great Satan” – the US supported the mujahideen on the basis of the proverb “my enemy’s enemy is my friend.”
In his book, Afgantsy: The Russians In Afghanistan, Rodric Braithwaite wrote that American assistance to the mujahedin was at first fairly modest.
Braithwaite, a former British ambassador to Moscow, wrote: “President Reagan had now taken over from Carter and his new CIA director, William Casey, a religious man, believed that Christianity and…