Blinken botches Afghan president’s title in TV slip-up

Secretary of State Antony Blinken mistakenly referred to a former president of Afghanistan on Sunday as a substitute of the deposed chief who fled the nation because the Taliban took management of Kabul.

Blinken, whereas discussing the speedy evacuations in Afghanistan , confused ousted President Ashraf Ghani with Hamid Karzai, who led Afghanistan’s first authorities after the Taliban had been overthrown in 2001 and was president till 2014.


“Return every week. The federal government fell. And by the best way, I used to be on the telephone with President Karzai the day earlier than, when he was telling me his intent, as he put it, ‘to combat to the demise.’ Nicely, the following day, he was gone,” Blinken mentioned throughout a Sunday interview on CBS’s Face the Nation.

The State Division appeared to verify that Blinken meant to say he had spoken with Ghani, not Karzai, by correcting its transcript of the interview.

The Biden administration has been working to guard Individuals and Afghan allies who’ve discovered themselves vulnerable to violent persecution after the Taliban shortly and simply rose to energy in Afghanistan, the pace of which caught U.S. officers abruptly.

Army and intelligence specialists mentioned for years that the Taliban may defeat the Afghan military, which had each better numbers and practically 20 years of U.S. navy coaching, in a matter of months. In actuality, it solely took the militant group roughly 11 days.

There have been roughly 30,000 folks evacuated for the reason that finish of July, with about 25,100 since Aug. 14, a White Home official mentioned on Sunday. The US was capable of evacuate 3,900 folks from 3 a.m. Saturday to three a.m. Sunday on 23 navy flights, whereas 35 coalition plane had been capable of evacuate roughly the identical variety of folks over the identical time period.

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