Demonstrations against the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan have begun in several Afghan cities with hundreds of Afghan people taking to the streets, tearing down white Taliban flags, and replacing them with the Afghan flag. These protests are happening in the capital of Kabul, Asadabad, and Jalabadad.
Taliban fighters fired at protestors in Jalalabad and killed three according to Reuters. Clashes between the Afghan people and the Taliban were heightened on Thursday in light of the Afghan Independence Day, which is August 19th, on which the nation celebrates the end to British rule in 1919.
Afghanistan’s First Vice President Amrullah Saleh, who claims that he is leading Afghanistan after President Ashraf Ghani fled to the United Arab Emirates on Sunday, encouraged the protests and intends to rally opposition to the Taliban.
On Thursday, Saleh tweeted, "Salute those who carry the national flag and thus stand for dignity of the nation and the country."
Thousands of people are attempting to flee Afghanistan as the Taliban hold the airport in Kabul despite a significant US presence of soldiers working to organize the chaos and enable flights out.
Ahmad Massoud, the leader of the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan, is leading the Mujahideen resistance against the Taliban, organizing his fighters and those of the Afghan regular army, in the Panjshir Valley, which he says is "the last bastion of Afghan freedom."
President Joe Biden spoke on Monday, the day after the Taliban's Sunday takeover, implying that the Afghan people did not have a strong enough will to fight against the Taliban. Biden said that the American forces in Afghanistan had done everything they could to equip the Afghan forces in this war, but that the US "cannot and should not be fighting in a war and dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves."
He went on to say that the American forces gave the Afghan people "every chance to determine their own future. We could not provide them with the will to fight for that future."