On 9/11, Trump vows to hit Taliban ‘harder’ than ever

US President Donald Trump speaks during a 911 memorial ceremony at the Pentagon to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in Arlington, Virginia. The nation is marking the 18th anniversary of the terror attacks that took almost 3000 lives. (Getty Images/AFP)
Updated 11 September 2019

On 9/11, Trump vows to hit Taliban ‘harder’ than ever

  • Trump said the assault was ordered after he canceled peace talks with the Taliban
  • Trump issued a threat against militants ever attacking on US soil again

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump used 9/11 remembrance commemorations Wednesday to announce an unprecedented escalation of the US military assault on Afghanistan’s Taliban — just days after he wanted to hold peace talks with the insurgents.
Speaking at a Pentagon ceremony marking the 18th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people, Trump said that over “the last four days” US forces have “hit our enemy harder than they have ever been hit before and that will continue.”
Trump said the assault was ordered after he canceled peace talks with the Taliban over the weekend in retaliation for a bomb attack that killed one US soldier last week.
The precise nature of the US offensive against the Taliban that Trump described was not immediately clear.
On Monday, Trump had already declared that “over the last four days, we have been hitting our Enemy harder than at any time in the last ten years!“
But US troop levels in Afghanistan are only around 14,000, a fraction of the peak of about 100,000 in 2010.
In his Pentagon speech, Trump also issued a threat against militants ever attacking on US soil again, saying the response would be unlike any ever seen before.

“If for any reason, they come back to our country, we will go wherever they are, and use power, the likes of which the United States has never used before,” he said.
“I’m not even talking about nuclear power. They will never have seen anything like what will happen to them,” he added.
The warlike comments were all the more startling because it was only on Saturday that the Republican former businessman announced on Twitter that he’d been about to meet with Taliban leaders on Sunday at his Camp David presidential retreat.
Before the tweet, no one outside Trump’s immediate circle was aware of the development.
It came after months of painstaking, mostly behind-the-scenes negotiations on cutting back the US troop presence and extricating the United States from a long, fruitless war.
It was also stunning for the choice of the prestigious Camp David setting on a date so close to the September 11, 2001, anniversary.
Trump’s abrupt reversal of that plan and decision to punish the Taliban for last week’s bomb attack was followed by the sacking of his controversial national security adviser John Bolton on Tuesday.


Purdue says files for bankruptcy in bid to settle opioid crisis cases

Updated 1 min 47 sec ago

Purdue says files for bankruptcy in bid to settle opioid crisis cases

  • The pharmaceutical giant whose prescription painkiller OxyContin is blamed for much of the US opioid addiction epidemic, is facing thousands of state and federal lawsuits
  • The company said that it had filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code
NEW YORK: Purdue Pharma is to file for bankruptcy in a settlement agreement that it hopes will provide more than $10 billion to address the opioid crisis, the company said in a statement on Sunday.

The pharmaceutical giant whose prescription painkiller OxyContin is blamed for much of the US opioid addiction epidemic, is facing thousands of state and federal lawsuits.

The settlement, which is subject to court approval, will contribute Purdue’s entire value to a body established for the benefit of the claimants and the American people.

Purdue Chairman Steve Miller said the settlement will “provide billions of dollars and critical resources to communities across the country trying to cope with the opioid crisis.”

The company said that it had filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code and that the board of a new company would be selected by claimants and approved by the Bankruptcy Court.

Miller said the restructuring will avoid “wasting hundreds of millions of dollars and years on protracted litigation.” As part of the settlement, the company says it will potentially contribute millions of addiction treatment drugs to the public at no or low cost, such as nalmefene and naloxone.

As well as giving up control of Purdue, the settlement will also see the wealthy Sackler family personally contribute $3 billion, with the potential for further contributions.