"What we saw was a collapse of the political and military leadership, and that triggered the collapse of the whole defense against the Taliban," Jens Stoltenberg, NATO's secretary-general told New York Times.
Mr. Stoltenberg was asked whether the U.S. and NATO departures had a psychological and logistical impact that abetted the Afghan collapse. "There will be, of course, a lot of analysis and scholars looking into this," he said. "My main focus is how we can preserve the gains made in the fight against terrorism and how you get people out of Afghanistan."
"For European allies to go to their parliaments and ask for more money and more soldiers to send into harm's way in Afghanistan in a mission launched to protect the United States" would have been very hard once Washington decided to leave, he said. "This is about more than European capabilities, this is about deep politics, about what's reasonable to expect from allies that went in to support the United States."