August 18, 2021

Ep. 79: Afghanistan

On Sunday the 15th August the Taliban took control of Kabul, capping an astonishingly rapid takeover of Afghanistan. In this emergency episode, Allan and Darren try to make sense of these events, analytically but also on a more personal level. How could this have happened? Was it true that the United States faced a simple choice between getting out or staying forever? What are the implications for Joe Biden’s legacy, and America’s standing in the world? And what is the Australian angle here?

Many thanks to Dominique Yap for audio editing and Rory Stenning for composing our theme music.

Relevant links

Paul Miller, “What really went wrong in Afghanistan”, The Dispatch, 29 January 2020:  

Craig Whitlock, “At war with the truth” (Afghanistan Papers”), Washington Post, 9 December 2019: 

Remarks by President Biden on the Drawdown of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, The White House, 8 July 2021:

Gideon Rachman, “Joe Biden’s credibility has been shredded in Afghanistan”, Financial Times, 13 August 2021:

Daniel Drezner, “Afghanistan’s effect on American foreign policy”, Washington Post, 15 August 2021:

ABC News Sunday (NSW), 15 August 2021:

Scott Morrison, “Interview with Lisa Millar, ABC News Breakfast”, Transcript, 16 August 2021:

Marise Payne, “ABC Radio National – AM with Sabra Lane”, Transcript, 17 August 2021:

List of Afghan charities: (see also this tweet thread from Elsa Kania (@EBKania) )

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