Kabul Airport following the terror attack (Image: Twitter)

The deaths of Americans and Afghans in attacks near the Kabul airport, allegedly at the hands of the Islamic State’s branch in Afghanistan, have heightened fears that Washington is back to square one after the humiliating Taliban takeover of Afghanistan and facing a threat similar to 9/11 20 years later.

The Biden administration has denied that the threat is as dire now as it was two decades ago, saying the US defense and intelligence apparatus maintains an “over the horizon” capability for detecting and taking out future terrorist threats to the US homeland and other US interests.

On Monday, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said that “the president has been clear that, from his perspective, American counterterrorism capabilities have evolved to the point where we can suppress that terrorism threat without keeping thousands or tens of thousands of troops on the ground in a country.”