Analysis: Joe Biden and Boris Johnson five weeks ago claimed Afghan government would not fall so easily
Joe Biden could not have been clearer: a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan was “not inevitable”, the US president said on 8 July. Boris Johnson, the UK prime minister, was equally confident – “there is no military path to victory for the Taliban” – he told MPs earlier that day, five weeks ago.
The president said he trusted “the capacity of the Afghan military”, who were better trained, better equipped and “more competent in terms of conducting war”. The prime minister agreed: “I do not believe that the Taliban are guaranteed the kind of victory that we sometimes read about.”