As the U.S. scrambles to evacuate citizens and Afghan refugees now under Taliban rule, President Joe Biden has told ABC that he didn’t believe there was any way to leave Afghanistan without “chaos ensuing.” “The idea that somehow, there’s a way to have gotten out without chaos ensuing, I don’t know how that happens,” he said in the interview with George Stephanopoulos, saying that chaos was always factored into his thinking. Biden said much of the fault lies on those in the country. “When you had the government of Afghanistan, the leader of that government, getting in a plane and taking off and going to another country, when you saw the significant collapse of the Afghan troops we had trained... That’s simply what happened.”
On the distressing images of scared Afghans packing a C-17, and even falling from the sky as the clung to the plane’s wheels, Biden said that “was four days ago, five days ago.” (The flight was two days ago.) He said, once the country saw photos of the airport in shambles, troops made securing it their highest priority. The rest of the interview is set to air on ABC’s World News Tonight Wednesday and Good Morning America Thursday.