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The Taliban in Kabul. Allies taken by surprise. A Euro-Atlantic intelligence bug?

(B2) The rapid advance of the Taliban towards the Afghan capital had not been anticipated. At least as quickly by the different services. Some European officials recognize this unequivocally

« On Friday [August 13], according to all available information, including intelligence data, we worked with the fact that we have time to evacuate by the end of September. We were talking on Saturday [14] of the end of August, date by which the Taliban could reach Kabul. The fact that he finally broke into it on Monday [16] is clear evidence of the dynamics of the developing situation. No one was ready for such a development “, recognized the Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Jakub Kulhánek.

Either the information did not circulate well between the allies, or there was a big bug somewhere (particularly on the American side), or there was an increase in optimism and collective self-intoxication. Or all three at once…


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).