British troops have now entered the final stages of the evacuation from Hamid Karzai Airport in Kabul.

According to a spokesman for the Prime Minister, the UK has evacuated more than 12,000 people from Afghanistan “and our teams are working hard to make sure they continue to be supported as they rebuild their lives here in the UK”.

According to a statement posted by the Ministry of Defence:

“Following our pre-planned timetable, processing facilities inside the Baron Hotel in Kabul have been closed. This will enable us to focus our efforts on evacuating the British nationals and others we have processed and who are at the airport awaiting departure.

The UK’s ability to process further cases is now extremely reduced and additional numbers will be limited. No further people will be called forward to the airport for evacuation. Evacuating all those civilians we have already processed will free up the capacity needed on UK military aircraft to bring out our remaining diplomats and military personnel.”

The MoD add that the decision to close the evacuating handling centre was made by the Chief of Joint Operations and authorised by the Defence Secretary. It reflects the latest understanding of the situation on the ground.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:

“Our top priority as we move through this process will be the protection of all those involved who are operating in a heightened threat environment. It is with deep regret that not everyone has been able to be evacuated during this process. But I am proud of this remarkable achievement from our Border Force, Armed Forces, MOD, FCDO, Home Office who have evacuated over 13,000 people in 14 days during Operation Pitting. We will continue to honour our debt to all those who have not yet been able to leave Afghanistan. We will do all that we can to ensure they reach safety.”

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Muhammed
Muhammed
1 month ago

i assume this is the reaction to the recent attacks done by isis k in recent hours , so they are now winding down their operation to reduce the threat of uk personel being targeted

Mark B
Mark B
1 month ago

I am glad we have extracted as many of those wanting to leave, who supported our attempts to help Afghans, as possible. Hopefully all British nationals have left. It is now time to withdraw and let the Afghan people forge their own future however alien that might be to our values. True democracy means allowing them to tread their own path in their own time without external influence. If they allow attacks from within their borders again we should surgically remove that problem but think very carefully about getting involved again.

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

I would agree if the people of Afghan had actually made “true Democratic” choice. Trouble is they have no idea what that means and damn sure they didn’t vote for Terry Taliban

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago

It’s good that we extracted around 13,000. But I am reading that even so we failed to extract 1100 at risk interpreters. What happened?

Mark B
Mark B
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

It will be many months before we know how many made it out. The west thought that it had built a regime determined to keep the taliban at bay (even if it cost them their lives) and had the support of a good chunk of the population. The suspicion now must be that the regime and the people were speaking with forked tougue. The surrender seemed almost pre-planned and perhaps when the west has left it might pave the way for some form of unity (perhaps it might lead to civil war). What seems obvious now is that we were… Read more »

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

Time will tell Mark, I suspect they will give it a whirl, propped up by Pakistan, before it all goes tits up and tribal….

Hopefully it will hold up long enough for those who need to to get out to clear the border.

We have a few barging chips to cash in…..

We can threaten to support the old Northern Alliance players and bring it all down round their ears as we trigger and fuel yet another civil war…

Antipodean
Antipodean
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

Years ago when working in government procurement I had a very wise Chief Engineer who told me that our (government’s) biggest problem was not that our contractors lied to us, rather it was that we knew they were lying to us but then still awarded the contract to the one who told the biggest lies. I suspect the same dynamic is at play here.

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Its a big country, they wont have all been based in Kabul and the speed that this has all happened I doubt it would be easy to jump in a car and drive across the country to the one extraction point.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  James

Yeh, I recall Biden answering a question on this; it seems the US planners decided on Kabul as the unique extraction point. Make your own way there. Some remote collection points and helo flights would surely avoided this situation assuming it was possible to communicate with the interpreters; lists, mobile phones?? Two or three dozen Chinook flights would have done it. Bit of a sickener really.

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Yup more could have been done, Bagram for a start shouldnt have been abandoned over night recently, probably a critical mistake in this entire s*** show of a situation.

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Not all live in Kabul, even if they do taliban has been stopping people coming and taking documents.

Goldilocks
Goldilocks
1 month ago

Morning,

Searching through Janes and found this article, one of those capabilities that were crucial to the guys on the ground when Afghanistan was a tad more safer

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/uk-sells-defender-aircraft-back-to-manufacturer

Cheers, Goldilocks

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Goldilocks

The Islander take off run is roughly = QE deck length….just sayin…

Johan
Johan
1 month ago

End of the day, HOW MANY INTERPRETERS did we really use, as it seems to be every man and his dog was employed.

Joe Bidden is going to hunt down suicide bombers, ????? that maybe difficult, as they tend to go bang.

Bidden stop blaming Trump, he didn’t leave $82b worth of kit BEHIND,

Every Nato allies are now looking @ the USA and saying WE DONT TRUST YOU.

every death in the coming months is on the People who voted for Biden based on the fact HE WASN’T TRUMP.

HANDS UP American YOU FUCKED IT UP. AGAIN

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

Biden is the issue not the US Military

dave12
dave12
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

It was Trumps deal with the taliban that started it , granted US military said that 2000 stationed troops would prevent taliban take over, but cant stay there for ever unless you want to start a war with pakistan , that was , is the main problem.

Pete
Pete
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

The holes in the cheese have lined up on this one no single factor.

Trump negotiations with Taliban excluding Afg govt shaped the playing field. Biden pulling out in manner the US did fueled the situation. The inability of the rest of the international community to do anything other than be wagged put the final nail in the coffin.

In cold light of day will be interesting to see who actually made what recommendations

Pete

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

The Americans are more than welcome to have Tony Blair and Cameron as vice president…..😂😂😂

julian1
julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

you forgot Boris

Spencer
Spencer
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

The simple fact seems to be, no matter whether Biden had U turned on Trumps promise to remove all US troops, or gone through with it as he did, he would have been just as unpopular. A shitty situation to inherit.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Spencer

Disagree. Biden cancelled EVERY Trump deal when he became President…except this one. He also, originally, wanted a 9/11 exit date after MISSING the May date in Trump’s deal. He then picked 8/31 after “negotiating” with the Taliban. It was under Biden’s watch that Bagram was closed FIRST and US Forces evacuated – ahead of the embassy or civilians. There’s no amount of lipstick that can make this look pretty and Biden needs to own it – he is President, Trump has been gone 8 MONTHS. American blame shifting is not working this time.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

Who is Bidden?

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

Like grandpa Walton with dementia

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

Biden has dementia. He’s a career politician who has not accomplished a single thing in 40 odd years. The reason he was elected was because of people’s dislike for Trump. This is all on Biden.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Hmm, Biden has dementia, sounding awfully like Trump’s favourite false news Rob.

You know this to be fact??

Wolf
Wolf
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

I don’t know that to be a fact, but you have to agree, he is getting forgetful. There have been numerous occasions when he has forgotten what to say or the mic gets switched off so that he doesn’t have to answer. I don’t like criticising people in power like that because it happens all the time, politicians would agree, they could get it better next time but Biden is different.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Wolf

I would have to agree, Biden seems far from perfect, he has a certain ‘strange distance’ to him, for want of a better word. Bizarre from a country with so many people, that it came down to that choice! That said, Biden appears to be at least be an honourable man, he doesn’t take pleasure in grabbing woman’s *****’s, or talk about injecting bleach, or attempt to subvert the very democratic process that elected him etc, etc, etc. So that’s a step in the right direction! I remember the days of ‘proper’ US Presidency, the early Reagan years and Bush… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

And no nasty tweets. What does it matter that he’s cocked up the entire exit from Afghanistan, left 85 BILLION in the latest hi tech military hardware behind, needlessly destroyed the lives of 12 US troops, empowered Al Qaida and ISIS. As long as peoples feelings are not at risk, it’s a fair price to pay, right?

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

I quite agree with your comments about how the taliban have now been gifted such a cache of military hardware although a lot of blackhawks and fix winged aircraft did manage to get out of the Country before it fell .I wonder if the taliban will ask for them back ?

Wolf
Wolf
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

You talk about Trump’s personal blunders but I’m talking about Biden’s national blunders, in fact, his international blunders as can be seen in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Last edited 1 month ago by Wolf
Wolf
Wolf
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

What about Mike Pence as president?

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

There’s so much live un-doctored video evidence to support this – simply ignoring it and saying everything is great with Biden is reckless. He has cognitive decline and even the most minimal self research makes this obvious. I don’t trust the left and their gaslighting operations – I trust my eyes ears and brain not the lefts versions of what I know I’m seeing. Are you saying he’s perfectly OK? You might be alone on an island on that narrative mate.

Last edited 1 month ago by Rob
Wolf
Wolf
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Biden hasn’t only just wasted all this money. The fact is that he also hasn’t just wasted 12 precious lives but he has wasted thousands of precious lives… for what? The brave men who served and died for the country of Afghanistan have died so that the country could be taken back by the enemy, by the people they were fighting. It’s shocking, isn’t it? Just appalling and nobody can disagree, nobody can disagree unless they don’t care about those lives lost in that country.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Wolf

Looks like our special relationship with America is under strain when mr Biden was president elect a BBC reporter went to interview him the reporter said ” Mr Biden the BBC” his reply was short and curt “I’m Irish” and walked off.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

Not really. The SR is deeper than who is PM and who is POTUS. Figureheads who will in short order be out the door to be replaced by another. It is in the relationships between the intelligence agencies, the militaries, the SF, and R&D. POTUS whoever he is will not have a clue as to half of that. POTUS does not, for example, have the highest security clearance. He has high clearance, yes, for need to know. That story you quote I believe concerned a question regards Brexit and the NI situation. We get these scare stories every time a… Read more »

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago

Thank you for your response one thing is for sure with me I would never even contemplate picking up the Guardian I refrain from calling it a Newspaper . I believe it is 1st year LSE course work (London School of Economics)

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

Sorry The Adept name should of read the London school of read your comics

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

Glad to hear it!

Tommo. I indeed had you as a Guardianista.
My apologies.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago

In all my years in the forces not once did I come across a guardian reader they failed at the careers office IQ test probably and thanks for your apology

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Wolf

Absolutely agree. It’s completely shocking and I think we are all just shocked at what has happened, in just two short weeks.

Pete
Pete
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

The best of two very different wrongs doesn’t make a right. The US political system has become very ideologically corrupt I’m really surprised a new Middle of the road political party hasent emerged. Maybe their society is simply too polarised …dangerous.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Pete

Yes, the US election system is corrupted and many people wonder if it’s worth it casting a vote or not. This is so dangerous. Half the country is hard left and half is hard right, there’s very little middle ground and virtually no compromise.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

There is I’m afraid to say no middle ground in American Politics the all powerful Dollar decides and the second ammendment holds sway whenever a candidate tries their luck

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

At todays Whitehouse briefing 28 Aug Mr Biden was absent afternoon Nap probably he now believes that he has abstracted all personnel from Siagon time for Coco

Richard Wakefield
Richard Wakefield
1 month ago

This is a great achievement to withdraw so many people!
Unfortunately we are still making mistakes with our overseas ambitions. The British should look after Europe with it’s European allies and concentrate being the best we can on our own doorstep. where do deployments of task forces around the world really get us!

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago

It gets us around the world and away from the insular and inward looking European allies.

Take a look at a 1950s era map marked up in red for British Empire/Commonwealth. That’s where the UK is now looking again and not just the blue of the European continent.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago

Agree kudos to the guys and girls out there and also to Ben Wallace who has looked like the only adult in the political room at times. I don’t agree with your assessment that we are making mistakes with our overseas ambitions. We left the EU and this has created a lot of work and out pressure on economic and political relations with our neighbours. This is unfortunate but as the saying goes we are where we are. What is required now is work aka global UK. Let’s be frank. It will be probably be a decade before our economy… Read more »

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago

The EU. That old saying if you have nothing good to say don’t say anything. On Europe I have just this to say

julian1
julian1
1 month ago

I’d have liked Britain to stay in the EU…but I also would have liked the EU to transform. For me it needs greater political unity, less infighting, more robust foreign policy and to grow some teeth. Britain could have helped with that…..pipe dream? Perhaps

OldSchool
OldSchool
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

You’re dealing with the French. Says it all ……

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  OldSchool

Spot on! The EU was, is and always will be about France.

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Its about France but only about it if it benefits Germany, hence the Euro was invented to give Germany a huge advantage for its manufacturing export industry, all the while the mass majority of the EU suffered with the new currency alas this was ignored because it benefited a couple of countries.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

France and Germany. Everyone else is just being pushed around.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  OldSchool

Quite agree the French sat on the fence for the duration of the cold War and when the Warsaw pact crumbled the French decided to join NATO

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

I’ll go out on a limb and say it’s not a pipe dream. The UK joining the EU was a high point in the ‘European project’ initiated by the founding fathers of the EU. These men shared a vision for the EU as an implementation of Catholic social teaching. In the EU we were a strong and pragmatic counter to France welcomed by Germany and the smaller nations. In return the Germans helped to reinvigorate our car industry ( and armoured vehicles), the French rebuilt our water industry, and immigrants from Poland, Romania, Spain, Portugal brought a caring and cheerful… Read more »

James
James
1 month ago

The EU is fully capable of looking after itself, it doesnt need the US or the UK to do so if it would do a few simple things, one of those is actually agree on policies which now the UK has left and isnt constantly fighting with France and Germany that might now be possible. Secondly it needs to put its hand in its pocket, Germany miraculously in the last couple of years has started spending on defence again but its had decades of allowing the US, UK and France to mostly foot the bill. Deployments around the world gets… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

Yes. UK needs to stop following America around like a puppy. We need to be far more discriminating with who we pair up with on these deadly international adventures. We’ve got our own distinct interests as an independent country. The US won’t even sign up for a free-trade deal with us because of Biden and Obama’s “last in the queue” anti-British ideology. Wake up!

Wolf
Wolf
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

If we want to be more independent we NEED to boost our defence. I welcome the recent increase in spending but I think that increase is only making up for what it should have been, to pay for things we already have or are planning to have. For example, a larger escort fleet etc.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

And yet, ONE OF US, Pen Farthing, an ex RM, left stuck there with hundreds of rescue Dogs and Cats. Already turned away by the Taliban and now blocked entry to airfield by paperwork rule changes, which HMG have not intervened in. And Ben Wallace says he’s welcome to LEAVE HIS ANIMALS and then can come on an RAF flight????!!! He calls them “pets ” Some are ex MWD!! Heartless bastard. Sorry. Your moral compass is all wrong Defence Secretary and, if the worst happens and they are left behind and die, I hope your government falls for the backlash… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Daniele Mandelli
Donaldson
Donaldson
1 month ago

DefenceHQ tweeted the following over an hour ago;

“Pen Farthing and his pets were assisted through the system at Kabul airport by the UK Armed Forces. They are currently being supported while he awaits transportation. @defencehqpress On the direction of the Defence Secretary, clearance for their charter flight has been sponsored by the UK Government.”

https://twitter.com/DefenceHQPress/status/1431297919399993347

edit: Unfortunately the Taliban wouldn’t allow his staff to pass through.

Last edited 1 month ago by Donaldson
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Donaldson

God I hope this is true.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  Donaldson

All I can say on this is that I hope he has organised his pet passports, his annex 2 documents…otherwise the Heathrow Animal Reception Centre will be busy….and he will have a huge quarantine bill. I brought my pet Conure back from the US last year, that took me 3 months to organise and cost a fortune

Expat
Expat
1 month ago

Sorry disagree on this one if this has lead to animals being prioritised over a single child the then it’s a poor show.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

No worries. We all have different priorities. Mine include equality for animals.
Ben Wallace saying they are “pets” totally misunderstands what the Nowzad charity was about WRT reuniting traumatised soldiers with animals that they bonded with and which kept them sane in the hell hole of war.
That is what really has annoyed so many.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago

my daughter read a book which covers how the US military uses bird therapy for veterans

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

Many thanks for your input on therapy for veterans for the last 20yrs I have taken in rescue Cats get them seen to and chipped and give them a home too me they aren’t just Pets they keep me sane as I have ptsd. Even if I have a bad night I know I’ll be greeted in the morning to get up and do their brekkie Their names are Wellington and Napoleon .a cat on your lap is very therapeutic

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

Mine too. Animals are family members in millions of homes.

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Yep. But ask me to choose between saving a dog or other pet, even mine or a some else’s daughter. It’s a no brainer for me but sounds like others may choose differently.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

Obviously. I’m sure even these people would agree.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

But that’s the thing. It’s not a human or animals situation is it. They don’t need processing at the hotel and visas and passports checked. It’s one bloke. With his baggage. Those Dogs and Cats. That convoy arrived of Its own violation, having had Taliban wave AKs in their faces twice and an ND which could have killed someone. There was no diverting any military. 2 Para did not stop their snatches in Kabul and paperwork approved in London via a phone call or email is not meaning leaving a child sitting at the airport. I believe the processing centre… Read more »

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago

Agree with your posts mate but the cynic in me tends to think Pen has overegged it somewhat. His staff are still sat in Kabul and he is away with his animals. Not his fault at all but I can see book number 4 coming out within 12 months, about his escape from Kabul. He is clever, he used the media very well, to try to attain the end state and that alone generally pisses off civi servants, but the dogs in Kabul are hard as nails and the vast majorly would have survived ok or released. The animals people… Read more »

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

Flooded? Bloody hell flogged!

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

Shot, bloody hell once more, shit! To early I will try later lol

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

Yes sadly I’d considered them.
I’m glad he’s over egged it, quite frankly.
Other wise hed be stuck there now and putting to sleep 200 animals at Kabul airport.
I believe some are ex MWD? They don’t deserve that.
The MoD is happy to send them potentially to their deaths on ops so can bloody well get them back again. If some waifs and strays join them fine.

Respect. As always.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago

Fair enough point mate, as always your opinion is one of sound and sensible thinking. Fair play to Pen, takes nads to do what he has been doing, with some real humanity. Let’s see how the next few days, weeks and months play out which will see, IMHO, the west (UK/US) aligning with the Talibs to work on eliminating ISIS-K. Methinks the Taliban, while never admitting it, will want the west to support them militarily against the ISIS and in doing so agree to a number of reforms in a vain attempt to gain some sort of international recognition from… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

And you my friend.

Taliban and the west co operating. What a thought.
Would love to know just what level any backchannels are at between them.

ISIS-K need exterminating. With extreme prejudice.

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

Yep -I’m with you on this. It has , and it is.

Donaldson
Donaldson
1 month ago

Hope the lads and lasses make it home now without incident and of course RIP to the 13 US personnel.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

As an operation this has been a remarkable success in a very desperate situation. All ranks should be congratulated for their hard work & professionalism. Lets hope they all get out safely. At a political level though it is obviously a disaster because Afghanistan is now ungoverned space and the jihadist’s have been emboldened. BUT This by no means is the first time a western army has been ejected from a foreign country by a jihadist force only for that force then to fail; General Gordon in Khartoum, the 1st & 2nd British Afghan Wars, several campaigns on the British… Read more »

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Let’s hope the Taliban leadership stay in Qatar has educated then as to how an Emirate might be run. Some of the gulf states although not perfect are fairly tolerant. Although I won’t be expecting Afghanistans world Cup bid anytime soon.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

does anyone know the details of Para offices “bawling out” more senior US officers? I’d love to know the background….and the fall-out

Andy B
Andy B
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1
Julian1
Julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy B

Good article, thanks.

not sure how the paras move “aggressively” past a taleban check point without starting a fire fight…

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy B

Thanks for posting that – restores my faith in UK forces , and our abilty to ignore bullshit when necessary…

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  grizzler

I can see the US side of this though, if the action had resulted in a firefight and the whole operation fallen apart, a lot of people would not have not made it out alive. Luckily it didn’t happen and the UK forces decision turned out to be the right one.

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve
Rob
Rob
1 month ago

The British have acquitted themselves with courage, honour and bravery, taking many many risks to leave the airport and rescue trapped Brits and Americans. “Who Dares Wins” on full display. If anyone is left behind it’s on the USA ,not the UK. The USA is to blame, sorry it just is. Stupid Biden political interference overriding his military experts.

OldSchool
OldSchool
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Actually I blame the Afghan military….two faced and gutless. The West spent a fortune on those guys. Oh but wait a minute the Taliban were really tough opponents…..how many panzer korps did they have again???

Last edited 1 month ago by OldSchool
Sooty
Sooty
1 month ago

Seems our troops will be assisting in the evacuation of some pussy cats and doggies when they could no doubt be doing something more useful. Is that sending a rather strange message about western values? Or are they cleverly disguised interpreters . . . ?

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  Sooty

Careful….we are British you know ….doggies are important…perhaps as important as people.