Afghanistan, Middle East

Past Virtual Event: One year later: assessing the Afghanistan withdrawal

August 30, 2022, marks one year from when the U.S. completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan. Some praised President Trump and President Biden’s policies to withdraw U.S. forces from Afghanistan as a prudent strategic decision which benefitted U.S. security interests. Others condemned the U.S. exit as reckless abandonment or a show of weakness.

Earlier in August, a CIA drone strike in Kabul killed Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, one of the masterminds behind the 9/11 attacks. This is indicates the U.S. maintains an “over-the-horizon” capability in Afghanistan (and beyond) to disrupt anti-U.S. terror threats. However, the Taliban have complete control over Afghanistan, and they’ve reversed many of the reforms instituted in the country during the 20-year U.S. war.

One year after the last American servicemember left Afghan soil, what are the implications of that policy decision? How should the execution of the U.S. exit inform decisions about troop levels in the greater Middle East? What is the likely affect on U.S. national security going forward?

Event Speakers


Contributing Fellow

Defense Priorities


Senior Fellow & Military Expert

Defense Priorities


Non-Resident Senior Fellow

Defense Priorities