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Representative Cuellar defends president after end of America’s longest war

Published: Aug. 31, 2021 at 11:22 PM CDT
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LAREDO, Tex. (KGNS) - The majority of U.S. military forces have now left Afghanistan, but the focus now is on those who were left behind.

Afghanistan is waking up to a new reality this Tuesday with the absence of us troops for the first time in almost 20 years.

Taliban leaders declared victory in the longest war the United States has ever fought and the impact is still being felt here at home.

“First of all, the war never ends, it might end in physical terms, but it never ends,” said Gabriel Lopez. “It affects generations to come. So, to say the war is over is a misunderstanding.”

As the president of the United States defends his decisions, president of the South Texas Afghanistan/Iraq Association, Gabriel Lopez wants to ensure that local military troops are recognized for their efforts overseas.

“It just shows the reflection of the Hispanic community, the contributions that we made.”

“We did lose one of our own there, David Lee Espinoza, but we have to understand what we saw there,” said Representative Henry Cuellar. “President Trump entered an agreement with the Taliban fighters, excluding the Afghanistan army. He set time tables to come in. President Biden inherited this.”

After two decades, the United States has completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan, ending America’s longest war.

The president continues to face fierce criticism for the deadly chaos of the final days in Afghanistan and for sticking with his timeline, despite leaving as many as 200 Americans behind and thousands of Afghans who worked alongside the U.S.

“The way it was handled in the very end, I think that should be handled differently,” said Cuellar. “I don’t think you should set a time table. You get out the people you need to get out and then you set the time table, but not the way he did it. So, trump set this in process and Biden should have handled this a lot better.”

Again, there are still American citizens left in Afghanistan. There are also interpreters who worked with American forces and other vulnerable afghans.

Efforts are being made to keep them hidden and sheltered until they get the right documents to potentially evacuate.

The Biden administration says more than 122,000 people including roughly 6,000 Americans have been evacuated from Afghanistan.

U.S. officials are vowing to continue helping people get out, despite the troops having now left.

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