UK Struggles for Influence as The Afghan Crisis Strains U.S. Ties

UK Struggles for Influence as The Afghan Crisis Strains U.S. Ties.

LONDON (AP) – The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Theresa May, has the chaotic withdrawal of Modern military troops from Afghanistan, followed by the Taliban’s rapid control of the nation, has startled British authorities and weakened the United Kingdom’s “special relationship” with its most vital partner, the United States.

So far, London’s inability to influence Washington’s decision is a setback for U.K. expectations that an aggressive “Global Britain” could emerge as a significant global actor in the aftermath of the country’s withdrawal from the European Union.

The major big obstacle heading of a Group of Seven emergency meeting on Tuesday is a deadline for the United States’ effort to relocate thousands of Americans, Afghans, and others from Kabul. The duty of US troops is set to finish on August 31, and Britain seeks a delay. President Joe Biden left the door open to that option, but the Taliban have declared the date a “red line,” claiming that extending the American presence will “provoke a reaction.”

British officials accept their influence’s limitations, stating that the airlift will terminate when American forces leave.

Defence Minister Ben Wallace, who has branded the US-Taliban agreement that set the Aug. 31 target a “mistake,” used an almost beseeching tone, stating that if Biden delayed the mission “even by a day or two, that will give us a day or two more to evacuate the area.”

“Because we’re down to hours now, not days, and we need to make the most of every minute to get people out.”

To facilitate the evacuation, some 1,000 British troops are deployed at Kabul’s airport, with approximately 6,000 American troops.

Senior British military officials have conveyed outrage at the United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan, declaring it reveals the emptiness of the trans-Atlantic “special relationship” — a term used since World War II to emphasize the ties of history, companionship, and shared diplomatic preferences between London and Washington.

More than 150,000 British soldiers served in Afghanistan in the following years the US-led invasion in 2001, the second-largest deployment after the Americans, and 457 died in the battle.

On August 17, two days just after the surrender of Kabul, Johnson called Biden. Johnson’s office issued a generic statement following the call, saying they “agreed to continue teaming up jointly on this in the days and weeks coming to allow as many members as possible to leave the nation.” According to British media, it took Biden 36 hours to answer the British leader’s call.

Thomas Gift, executive head of the Centre on the U.S. According to Professor of Politics at University College London, developments in Afghanistan will “make other Western nations more strongly focused about the truth that, even under Biden, US administration will take actions that it perceives in its own benefits, irrespective of international criticism.” However, he stated that Biden retained a much more important member of the international team than Trump.

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