With word this month that the Taliban had managed to reach Afghanistan’s capital city, mere weeks before the U.S. was projected to wrap up its troop withdrawal process, U.S. officials are said to be surprised at the rate with which the region’s government has fallen.

The history, however, runs deep.

As attention turns to President Biden, who in April announced he would “not pass this responsibility on” to a fifth president after four consecutive administrations, we’ve put together a guide on the current situation in Afghanistan and how it connects to the United States’ extended history of over-militarization.