Veteran who lost both legs in Afghanistan says it was ‘for nothing’
Veterans have criticised the west’s sudden withdrawal from Afghanistan.
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An Afghanistan war veteran and the family of a soldier killed in the conflict have spoken out to say their sacrifices were “for nothing” after the Taliban advanced on Kabul.
Afghanistan has been reclaimed by the Taliban for the first time in almost 20 years following the withdrawal of foreign troops.
Western countries have faced harsh criticism for their withdrawal from Afghanistan, including from veterans of the conflict.
Former royal engineer Jack Cummings, who suffered horrific injuries in a bomb blast in 2010 and lost several comrades, spoke out about the withdrawal on Twitter.
In a series of tweets, he wrote:”‘Was it worth it, probably not. Did I lose my legs for nothing, looks like it. Did my mates die in vain. Yep.”
He later spoke to Sky News, saying he ‘feels sorry’ for the Afghan people and said it was “devastating to see the country I fought in and fought for just go up in smoke”,
When asked what he would say to Boris Johnson, who said the west’s actions hadn’t been in vain, Mr Cummings replied: ‘Was it worth it?
“He said British soldiers didn’t die in vain, but I don’t think he will ever say that face to face with a grieving mum, wife, or father,” he added.
Around 150,000 British military personnel have served in the conflict since the invasion in the early 2000s.
Graham Knight, 69, had a 25-year-old son, Ben, who was killed in the conflict. He said of the recent events:
“We’re not surprised that the Taliban have taken over because as soon as the Americans and the British said they were going to leave, we knew this was going to happen.
“The Taliban made their intent very clear that, as soon as we went out, they would move in.
“As for whether people’s lives were lost through a war that wasn’t winnable, I think they were.”
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has said that rescue efforts are continuing, with US, UK and forces from other nations flying people out of Kabul airport.
He told BBC Breakfast the British Government is hoping to evacuate around 1,000 people a day.
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