The images of the triumphant Taliban that shame the West

After the final US flight took off from Kabul yesterday, it did not take long for the Taliban to demonstrate their iron grip on Afghanistan to the world

Some of the images which emerged from Afghanistan following the US exit (Photos: Twitter / Getty)

The past two-and-a-half weeks have borne witness to many extraordinary images from Afghanistan, and none of them leave the West in a good light.

Today is the deadline agreed by the US and Taliban on the final withdrawal of troops, but that actually happened last night.

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Another striking photo, this time of Major General Chris Donahue, the last American soldier leaving Afghanistan, pictured in night-vision as he boards the plane.

It didn’t take long for the Taliban to assert their full control over Kabul, as a series of yet more grim images emerged.

There was this video of the scene on the ground at the airport as the last US plane jetted off overhead, with militants waving the Taliban flag on the runway below.

Many videos captured the celebratory gunfire from the Taliban over Kabul.

There was the scene, pictured on the front of The Sun today, taken inside the former British police training headquarters in Kabul, with Taliban fighters posing in front of a table with a bobby’s helmet and a state trooper’s hat.

There was the sight of an Afghan TV anchor in a studio surrounded by eight armed Taliban fighters.

And footage emerged of Taliban fighters entering a hangar in Kabul where the US had left behind chinook helicopters.

The spoils of war, as they say.

The UK is now turning to diplomacy in an attempt to have a ‘moderating influence’ on the Taliban.

But with reports of atrocities already taking place - including the brutal murder of renowned Afghan folk singer Fawad Andarabi - those words look increasingly empty.

After 20 years of US and UK presence within Afghanistan, at a cost of thousands of military and civilian lives and a couple of trillion dollars, the Taliban is back in charge.

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