Biden under pressure as Afghanistan falls to the Taliban

(17 August 2021) The US suffered a body blow to its prestige this week after the Taliban defeated the Afghan army and captured the capital, Kabul.  The sudden collapse of the US-sponsored Afghan army marks an ignominious end to the 20-year war that cost a trillion dollars and many thousands of lives on both sides.   While the US had planned a complete withdrawal of its forces this year, the chaotic end of this nation-building exercise has undermined confidence in US foreign policy and its military capability.

For now, the big loser in this debacle seems to be President Joe Biden.  While former President Donald Trump negotiated the withdrawal last year, the Biden White House is responsible for this disastrous end to the US involvement in Afghanistan.   Even worse, there are now thousands of American citizens who have been left behind to fend for themselves against the Taliban.  Another batch of US troops are now being sent to safeguard these remaining citizens and protect the Afghans who have provided ground assistance to the US over the years and are vulnerable to Taliban reprisals.

This unfortunate situation shows up quite clearly in the Joe Biden's horoscope.  There are multiple planetary afflictions in his chart which reflect the seriousness of the current circumstance for his presidency.  The ongoing Saturn-Uranus square is still in close range to his Mars (19 Libra) and denotes the difficult (Saturn) and sudden (Uranus) events involving conflict and the military. 

Uranus stands out a bit more in this respect since it is due to station retrograde on Thursday, Aug 19, at which time is will reverse and approach its exact opposition with Mars due in October.  As we know, stationary planets tend to become stronger so this Uranus-Mars alignment suggests that Biden will likely be scrambling to keep up with unexpected military developments in the coming days and weeks.



Ketu and Neptune are other difficult influences in his chart for the second half of 2021.  Ketu is approaching its conjunction with the Ascendant (10 Scorpio) and can signify disruptive events that force him to quickly adapt to new circumstances.  The Neptune opposition to the MC (= Midheaven, the unequal 10th house cusp) also tends to be challenging as it represents the erosion of status and position.  Neptune often conveys a sense of dissolution or distortion and when it is associated with the 10th house of career, it can weaken an individual's occupational stature.  This is very much the case now as Biden attempts to fend off those who are questioning his competence and abilities. 

With Neptune now retrograde, it will move closer to an exact opposition to the MC over the next 4-6 months. This suggests that Biden's competence will continue to come under scrutiny through the fall and perhaps even into early 2022.  Neptune is due to station direct almost exactly opposite the MC on 1 December 2021. 

In the near term, we should watch for possible effects from the upcoming Mars-Neptune opposition at the end of August and the beginning of September.  This opposition will hit very close to Biden's MC and could signify more unwanted developments in Afghanistan that could further weaken his presidency.  As I noted back in the spring, Biden's horoscope does not look good this year.  These various tense aspects are likely to impact his presidency on several fronts besides Afghanistan. 


Weekly Market Forecast

Stocks are still looking firm here, although today's weak retail sales data sparked a significant sell-off.  I thought we might have seen a bit more volatility last week on the Mars-Ketu square but early week declines were very modest. 

There is the real possibility for more volatility this week.  Mercury conjoins bearish Mars tomorrow and then aligns with unpredictable Uranus late in the week.  The Uranus alignment is a wild card of sorts since it is stationing retrograde on Thursday.  This could magnify its effects on Mercury and Mars somewhat.   However, the Sun aligns with bullish Jupiter during the second half so that may offset some of the potential negativity.  And, of course, Venus continues its often difficult transit of Virgo this week so that could be a further drag on sentiment. 


For more details, check out my weekly subscriber newsletter which is published every Saturday afternoon (EST).   I outline the key technical and planetary influences for US and Indian stocks for the short and medium term, as well as currencies, gold and oil.






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