KTRH Local Houston and Texas News

KTRH Local Houston and Texas News

KTRH-AM covering local news from Houston and across Texas.


Embassy evacuations happening two-fold under Biden's watch

The United States has had plenty of embassy evacuations throughout history. In 1975, during the Fall of Saigon, the U.S. successfully departed Vietnam. In 1991, forces succeeded in evacuating 281 diplomats from the embassy in Mogadishu, Somalia, who was on the brink of Civil War. But there have been some not-so-successful ones along the way.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will forever take heat for the botched Benghazi situaiton, and subsequent evacuation of U.S. personnel from Libya in 2012. Most recently, in August 2021, President Joe Biden had his own disaster, with the evacuation of U.S. personnel from Afghanistan.

In total, President Biden has had six embassy evacuations since taking office, and now with a recent pull out of their compound in Niamey, Niger, there have been three in just the last four months. Jeff Addicott from St. Mary School of Law says we have exuded incompetence to the world.

"The general theme is, most people around the world view the United States as weaker than it was under the Trump Administration," he says. "That signal was underscored with the evacuation in Afghanistan. That showed great weakness...and therefore, many countries have lost confidence."

As he mentioned, no hit to the nation's competence was bigger than the chaos in Kabul. That airlift evacuation ended with 13 American soldiers being killed in a suicide bombing at the airport, and another 180 Afghani nationals dead.

"We did not handle that properly...we left billions of dollars and were seen as being driven out of the country," he says. "That just emboldens other countries, and our enemies...adding more fuel to the fire."

On Biden's ever-growing list of evacuations, in addition to the one in Niger, include Haiti, Sudan, Belarus, and Ukraine.

"We just have not had leadership required to project a strong America that will rise to a challenge when a challenge arises," says Addicott.

The weak President might not be done with the full-scale evacuations yet, either.

Just this week, an Ecuadorian presidential candidate was assassinated during a campaign event. There has also been high tensions and violence in Venezuela, Honduras, Guatemala, and others, with no steady hand to guide them.

"Latin America is another area...if we do not get control of our own border, we will see more tensions there. We know the Chinese are moving into the area," he says. "Across the world, particularly in third-world countries...there is a lot of uneasiness because that vacuum has been created, which the United States once filled."

The six evacuations tally up to just over two per year on average, which is double the rate of Biden's former boss, Barack Obama. He evacuated eight embassies over his two full terms.

The entrance to the U.S. Embassy in Russia

Photo: LightRocket

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