This is the last US soldier leaving Afghanistan

National News

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – AUGUST 30: In this handout provided by the U.S. Central Command, U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Chris Donahue, commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, XVIII Airborne Corps, boards a C-17 cargo plane at Hamid Karzai International Airport August 30, 2021 in Kabul, Afghanistan. Donahue is the final American service member to depart the country, completing the U.S. mission to evacuate American citizens, Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants, and vulnerable Afghans. (Photo by U.S. Central Command via Getty Images)

(NEXSTAR) – Maj. Gen. Chris Donahue has become the last U.S. soldier to leave Afghanistan, officially ending America’s longest war Monday.

The Department of Defense shared the photo of Donahue boarding a C-17 cargo plane at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul.

Thousands of troops had spent a harrowing two weeks protecting the airlift of tens of thousands of Afghans, Americans and others seeking to escape a country once again ruled by Taliban militants.

In announcing the completion of the evacuation and war effort. Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, said the last planes took off from Kabul airport at 3:29 p.m. Washington time, or one minute before midnight in Kabul. He said a number of American citizens, likely numbering in “the very low hundreds,” were left behind, and that he believes they will still be able to leave the country.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken put the number of Americans left behind at under 200, “likely closer to 100,” and said the State Department would keep working to get them out. He praised the military-led evacuation as heroic and historic and said the U.S. diplomatic presence would shift to Doha, Qatar.

Biden said military commanders unanimously favored ending the airlift, not extending it. He said he asked Blinken to coordinate with international partners in holding the Taliban to their promise of safe passage for Americans and others who want to leave in the days ahead.

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