JOE Biden finally allowed US soldiers to rescue stranded Americans outside Kabul airport as he feared another “Black Hawk Down” tragedy.
The president compared the crisis in Afghanistan with the 1993 attack on a conference call with military officials last week.
Biden didn't want the evacuation mission to turn into "Black Hawk Down" – an incident where two US choppers were shot down during the Somali Civil War, killing 18 soldiers.
US Special Forces rescued 16 American citizens from outside Kabul airport on Monday, the Associated Press reports.
They were brought back to the Afghan capital for evacuation processing.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said: “Our commanders have the authority they need to use their assets and their forces to help assist Americans who need to get to the airport on a case-by-case basis.”
He said that the US military had launched at least one additional rescue by helicopter but refused to provide any further details.
The rescue mission came after the Defense Department revealed that three US Army chinooks rescued 169 Americans from outside the airport last week.
Biden didn’t want flights to operate from unidentified bases outside Kabul but has since changed his mind.
The commander-in-chief wanted to avoid his own "Black Hawk Down" disaster – which saw dead American soldiers being dragged through the streets of Mogadishu in 1993.
Six months after the killings, all US forces were withdrawn from Somalia.
The disaster was a turning point in US interventions in Africa, and in 2001 it was the subject of an Oscar-winning film directed by Ridley Scott.
It comes as the president continues to receive a flurry of criticism for his handling of the crisis in Afghanistan.
Biden announced his intention to pull all US troops out of Afghanistan by August 31 but could be about to reverse his decision.
Commentators fear that the president's handling of the crisis may have affected Washington's reputation on the global stage.
US politics expert Rob Singh told The Sun that there is now concern among America's allies who are reliant on security guarantees.
'BIDEN UNDER FIRE'
He said: "Is this administration really likely to come to Taiwan's defense if China does seek to coerce it?
“For countries such as Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea, it's going to make them much more nervous about Washington.”
And, commentator and Trump loyalist Dan Bongino called for Biden to resign, branding the president a “total, epic, colossal apocalyptic failure”.
Meanwhile, GOP lawmakers Lindsey Graham and congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene have called for the president to be impeached.
And, former British PM Tony Blair branded Biden an "imbecile" over the decision to pull out from Afghanistan.
He said jihadist groups would be cheering at Washington's retreat.
Blair said: “We did it in obedience to an imbecilic political slogan about ending ‘the forever wars’ as if our engagement in 2021 was remotely comparable to our commitment 20 or even ten years ago.”
The calls for Biden's removal come after the Taliban warned of "consequences" if NATO troops are not out of the country by August 31.
Thousands of Afghans have flooded to the Kabul airport hoping to flee.
Some 20 people have been killed at the airport as a result of stampedes, shootings, and crushes as international forces have tried to evacuate citizens from the country.
Desperate Afghan stowaways tried to cling on to the sides of a US C-17 cargo plane as they tried to flee the Tabilan regime.
Men, women, and children were crushed in 90F heat as there were reports of people collapsing from exhaustion and asphyxiation.
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