Local veteran reacts to the President decision to withdraw troops in Afghanistan

DELMARVA- After hearing President Joe Biden’s decision to withdraw troops in Afghanistan, Danray Atkinson, a local veteran who served Afghanistan, says
the decision strikes a million emotions.

“My biggest thing is I feel sorry for the 2,448 Americans service members that were killed in Afghanistan,” Atkinson said.

Tuesday the nation watched as chaos unfolded in the region with the Taliban taking control.

But despite the troubling images, President Joe Biden said the timing had to be now.

“I stand squarely behind my decision. After 20 years, I’ve learned the hard way that there was never a good time withdraw U.S. forces,” President Biden said.

President Biden said the collapse happened quickly, blaming the Afghan government for not standing strong.

“Afghanistan political leaders gave up and fled the country. The Afghan military collapsed some time without trying to fight,” President Biden said.

But with American troops now pulling out and the Afghan military collapsing, Atkinson said his heart goes out to locals who will be left to deal with the Taliban.

“We left the everyday Afghan citizen without protection, I felt my mission in Afghanistan was to win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people, I feel like I failed my mission by us pulling out,” Atkinson said.

With that being said, Atkinson said he agrees with the Presidents decision to end the American military’s fight in Afghanistan.

“I personally believe it’s a loss cause, bring my brothers and sisters home safe and sound, reunite with them their families, learn from the experiences,” Atkinson said.

And that the nation’s longest war should be a learning lesson.

“We know in the future don’t do this again and our future leaders should understand this is not something that we should keep doing,” Atkinson said.

Categories: Local News, Maryland