BORIS Johnson took a veiled swipe at Joe Biden today for leaving Afghanistan at the mercy of the Taliban.
Furious MPs also mauled the embattled US President for deflecting blame onto the Afghan army.
In an address to the nation he “stood squarely behind” his call to see out Donald Trump’s deal to leave the country.
Under-fire for also withdrawing, the PM said the “hard reality” was Washington’s hasty exit left the UK with no choice.
Those who have never fought for the colours they fly should be careful about criticising those who have
Tom Tugendhat MP
He told a packed Commons chamber: “The West could not continue this US-led mission, a mission conceived and executed in support of America.”
Mr Johnson added it was an “illusion” that Britain and other Nato partners would continue the campaign.
Soldier-turned-Tory MP Johnny Mercer retorted that our boys should be more than capable of going it alone.
The Plymouth MP despaired: “We do not spend £40billion a year on a tier-one military to not be able to go out the door without the Americans.”
Other veterans in the House trained their guns on President Biden for accusing the Afghan army of downing weapons in the face of Taliban fighters.
The President said “Afghanistan political leaders gave up and fled the country. The Afghan military gave up, sometimes without trying to fight.”
In a powerful speech this afternoon Tom Tugendhat – boss of the Foreign Affairs Committee – gave Biden a dressing down.
He said: “To see their Commander in Chief call into question the courage of the men I fought with, to claim that they ran – shameful.
“Those who have never fought for the colours they fly should be careful about criticising those who have.”
Labour big beast Dan Jarvis – an army Major – agreed it was “particularly distasteful and dishonouring of President Biden to make reference to the lack of courage and commitment by Afghan soldiers who’ve served with such bravery and distinction.”
Asked if Mr Johnson agreed with President Biden’s controversial remarks, Downing Street would not be drawn.
The PM’s official spokesperson said: “Well I think the Prime Minister set out in the House we shouldn’t forget the 69,000 Afghan troops who gave their lives in this conflict.”
Earlier Mr Johnson paid tribute to the Western-backed Afghan troops who served alongside British forces.