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--> A midday take on what's happening in politics and how to have a sense of humor about it.*
*Ha. Haha. Hahah. Sniff. Haha. Sniff. Ha--breaks down crying hysterically.
NEWS OF THE MORNING
Well, there you have it.:
The final U.S. military plane left Afghanistan last night, ending the 20-year war and leaving the country in Taliban control.
QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT HAVE:
Wasn’t today the deadline? Why did we leave yesterday?: “[S]enior commanders decided to depart unannounced roughly 24 hours earlier, partly because of stormy weather forecast for Tuesday but also to build in a cushion in case of any snags, military officials said, including further attacks by ISIS-K.” (From The New York Times’s Adam Nossiter and Eric Schmitt) https://nyti.ms/3kW48AP
Did we get every American, who wanted to leave, out?: No. Between 100 and 200 Americans who wanted to leave Afghanistan are still in the country. https://bit.ly/2V7HaOc
What happens to those Americans who want to leave, but haven’t yet evacuated?: Blinken says the U.S. will still try to get those Americans out, though there are questions about the Taliban’s willingness to work with the U.S. after the withdrawal. Plus, it could be difficult without a functioning airport. https://reut.rs/3DA9KZZ
Will we have a diplomatic presence in Afghanistan?: No. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken says the U.S. will conduct its work from Qatar. https://reut.rs/2WCmSNd
How many people successfully evacuated from Afghanistan?: More than 114,00 people in the last two weeks of August. https://reut.rs/3DA9KZZ
What happens now in Afghanistan?: The Taliban will figure out how to govern. “Having humbled the world’s most powerful military, the Taliban now face the challenge of governing a nation of 38 million people that relies heavily on international aid, and imposing some form of Islamic rule on a population that is far more educated and cosmopolitan than it was when the group last governed Afghanistan in the late 1990s.” More from The Associated Press: https://bit.ly/3Dwkatn
Have we heard from President BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race On The Money: Democrats get to the hard part Health Care — GOP attorneys general warn of legal battle over Biden's vaccine mandate MORE?: Biden is set to give an address at 2:45 p.m. EDT today. Here’s the livestream: https://bit.ly/2WEdUzf
Reuters has a helpful explainer of what happens now in Afghanistan: https://reut.rs/3DA9KZZ
It’s Tuesday. I’m Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what’s coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to firstname.lastname@example.org — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.
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MORE FROM THE AFGHANISTAN EXIT
A prominent Afghan female politician escapes Kabul after Taliban house arrest:
Via The Washington Post’s Ellen Francis, female lawmaker Fawzia Koofi, who has survived at least two assassination attempts, has fled the country and made it to Doha, Qatar. https://wapo.st/3DrPpG9
How she made it out: “It was not immediately clear how she escaped the Taliban fighters who stood guard outside her house or if she was just allowed to leave.”
TIDBIT — WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL OF THE EQUIPMENT?:
Via USA Today’s Tom Vanden Brook, “The U.S. military likely abandoned tens of millions of dollars’ worth of aircraft, armored vehicles and sophisticated defensive systems in the rush to leave airport in Kabul safely.” https://bit.ly/3Dv8zLc
Yes, but: “Some pieces of equipment were likely blown up. Another defense official, also not authorized to speak publicly, acknowledged that a blast heard last week at the airport was related to destroying equipment.” https://bit.ly/3Dv8zLc
How much equipment was left?: It’s unclear. Former President TrumpDonald TrumpOhio Republican who voted to impeach Trump says he won't seek reelection Youngkin breaks with Trump on whether Democrats will cheat in the Virginia governor's race Trump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race MORE used the figure of $85 billion, but that number “reflects all the money spent to train, equip and house the Afghan military and police — so weapons are just a part of that.” Here’s what we do know: https://wapo.st/2WyYfRo
SIGHTS AND SOUNDS:
Here are the historic front pages of The New York Times and The Washington Post: https://bit.ly/3gNkNFm
This footage is pretty striking:
^ How you’re seeing this footage: The Los Angeles Times tweeted: “When the final U.S. troops left Afghanistan Monday, L.A. Times reporter [Nabih Bulos] stayed in Kabul with the Taliban. Here's what he saw.” https://bit.ly/3jvwhix
Check out how Wikipedia updated the page on the Afghan war:
Fascinating throwback: C-SPAN’s Howard Mortman dug up a clip of then-Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) speaking about Afghanistan on Oct. 22, 2001: "We cannot and certainly will not walk away from 7 million displaced desperate Afghanis surviving on little more than grass and locusts...Reluctant to use word nation building...but if we leave Afghanistan in chaos it will be another time bomb waiting to explode" Watch the clip of Biden: https://bit.ly/3BpBq1G
THE TOP HEADLINES ON A FEW MAJOR NEWS ORGANIZATIONS THIS MORNING:
The Washington Post: “U.S. troops depart a dramatically changed Afghanistan after 2 weeks of chaos and 20 years of war” https://wapo.st/3zwnUbW
The New York Times: “In Afghanistan, an Unceremonious End, and a Shrouded Beginning: The last American flight from Afghanistan left behind a host of unfulfilled promises and anxious questions about the country’s fate.” https://nyti.ms/3sZWIjk
Fox News: “Fathers of Marines killed in Kabul outraged over Biden’s behavior at ‘dignified transfer’ ceremony” https://fxn.ws/3jvEmDT
The Associated Press did not hold back: Read the first paragraph: https://bit.ly/3jsM8hE
NBC News: “Taliban celebrate as Afghans wake to uncertain future without U.S.” https://nbcnews.to/2UZRJTe
ABC News: “After 20 years, US ground troops leave Afghanistan, but Americans left behind” https://abcn.ws/3yw52Zi
The Hill: “Biden faces unfinished mission of evacuating Americans” https://bit.ly/38s6X6H
Stars and Stripes: “20-year mission in Afghanistan is over, last US military flights leave Kabul” https://bit.ly/2Y7lJh7
OTHER NEWS THIS MORNING
Via The Boston Globe’s Jim McBride, The Patriots released quarterback Cam Newton on Tuesday and rookie Mac Jones will be the starter, according to a league source.” https://bit.ly/3mNJIw9
“Newton, who missed three days of practice last week because of COVID protocols, was the presumed starting quarterback throughout training camp and the Patriots’ three preseason games. Instead, the Patriots will go with Jones, who was drafted in the first round out of Alabama in April.”
LATEST WITH THE CORONAVIRUS
We are exhausted and we are frustrated:
Via The Hill’s Niall Stanage, “A nation exhausted by 18 months of the pandemic is trying to figure out what lies ahead. Frustratingly, there may not be a nationwide answer.”
How so: “The latest figures show a flattening of new COVID-19 cases in some of the states that have been worst hit by the delta variant. But other states are suffering explosive rises.”
The specifics in each state are pretty interesting — and what happens now: https://bit.ly/3gKLJpi
Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 39,076,637
U.S. death toll: 639,050
Breakdown of the numbers: https://cnn.it/2UAgW3y
Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 370 million shots have been given.
Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 898,446 doses
For context: The U.S. population is roughly 331 million.
Breakdown of the numbers: https://bloom.bg/3iVTPLH
I keep seeing this video shared on Twitter. It has more than 1 million views.
The House and Senate are out. President Biden and Vice President Harris are in Washington, D.C.
9:30 a.m. EDT: President Biden received the President’s Daily Brief.
10:30 a.m. EDT: President Biden and Vice President Harris met with their national security team to discuss the situation in Afghanistan.
WHAT TO WATCH:
2:45 p.m. EDT: President Biden delivers remarks on ending the war in Afghanistan. Livestream: https://bit.ly/2WEdUzf
2 p.m. EDT The White House COVID Response Team holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3BvcNAv
3:30 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiOvernight Defense & National Security: US-Australian sub deal causes rift with France Psaki says White House offered 'early stage call' to Nicki Minaj Biden discusses agenda with Schumer, Pelosi ahead of pivotal week MORE holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3kDehCe
IN LIGHTER NEWS:
Today is National Trail Mix Day.
Via NBC’s Scott Stump, Mars Wrigley and Iconic Candy are reintroducing Creme Savers after the candy was discontinued for 10 years. https://on.today.com/3kHxqTx
Where to find them: At Big Lots starting in mid-September
And because you read this far, here’s a girl discovering the magic of cotton candy: https://bit.ly/3mOCTdG