As the USA gears up for the forthcoming Quad Summit with the physical presence of all four heads of government meeting in Washington DC on 24 September, the Chinese President Xi Jinping has fired the first shot across the bows by refusing a meeting with President Biden.
While the US National Security Adviser has been quick to clarify that such was not the case, this is obviously a fall out of the clumsy US withdrawal from Afghanistan and the swift and triumphant takeover of that country by the Taliban.
President Biden has been facing a lot of international flak for the ensuing chaos in Afghanistan and the assumption of power by a government with no experience of legitimate governance. Infact, President Biden is being spoken of as the weakest ever US President and the USA having forfeited its claim to global leadership but it must not be forgotten that the genesis of the USA’s ignominious exit from Afghanistan actually lay in the commitment made by President Biden’s predecessor, President Trump to the Taliban in at Doha in February 2020 to effect a complete US withdrawal by 31 May 2021 in exchange for cessation of attacks on America or Americans.
Infact, he legitimised the Taliban by engaging with them and undermining the legitimately elected government in Kabul. With this action, President Trump, for all his bluff and bluster, is the one responsible for tarnishing the USA’s reputation.
In one of his first actions after taking over, President Biden extended the withdrawal date to September 2021.