“I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades.”
Robert Gates, who served as Secretary of Defense in the Bush and Obama Administrations, said this of then Vice President Joe Biden in his 2014 memoir.
President Biden’s streak continues in Afghanistan. The level of incompetence displayed in the Biden Administration’s exit strategy in Afghanistan, if you can call it a strategy, is breathtaking.
First, they publicly announce the timeline.
Second, they draw down troops before evacuating civilians and Afghan allies who applied for visas.
Third, because of the arbitrary timeline for drawing down troops, the Biden administration had to choose between defending Bagram Air Force Base, about 40 miles north of Kabul, and defending Kabul International Airport and the U.S. Embassy. They decided to leave Bagram, which could have been a vital resource even with its distance from Kabul in this current evacuation effort. The Biden Administration ultimately didn’t leave enough troops to protect anything.
Fourth, not only did they abandon Bagram, but they left the Taliban a treasure trove of military equipment which could end up being used against us at a later date or sold to our enemies for intelligence purposes.
Fifth, they trusted the Taliban to keep their word, essentially outsourcing security to the Kabul Airport to the Taliban.
Sixth, Politico reported on Thursday that some genius gave the Taliban a list of people traveling to Kabul Airport. Sure, let’s provide the Taliban with a kill list; that seems bright.
On Thursday morning, two suicide bombers connected to ISIS killed (at the time of writing) 12 Marines and one Navy Corpsman (medic) and scores of Afghans near one of the gates to the Kabul Airport. The deadliest day for American servicemembers in a decade.
Gee, who would have thought terrorists would have free reign under the Taliban? It is difficult to stop suicide bombers, but if we evacuated out of Bagram with its hardened defenses or evacuated civilians long before the Taliban reached Kabul, this scenario would be more unlikely.
President Biden’s remarks to the nation on Thursday did not scream confidence. On the contrary, he appeared weak, tired, and I wondered if he would fall asleep during his moment of silence.
It was embarrassing and awkward to watch, especially after stating he had been “instructed” to call on certain reporters. He can’t even do unscripted press conferences, which he cut short because he had an upcoming meeting… “for real.” (As if they wouldn’t wait for the President of the United States.)
“We will hunt you down and make you pay,” he promised.
With what troops? From what forward operating base? Finding them using what human intelligence gathered from a shrinking pool of allies in-country?
Hey, at least he ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff; that shows the terrorists.
The president then said he stood by his decision to exit, saying it was time to end a twenty-year war, and then blamed the Trump Administration. However, the Biden Administration must have liked the deal the Trump Administration reached with the Taliban because it was one of the few things they didn’t take steps to reverse.
Regardless of the table the Trump Administration set, no one forced Biden to yank the table cloth out from underneath the dishes. Our shameful exit is his legacy. Instead of taking responsibility, he passes around blame and attempts to gaslight the American people.
Our choice wasn’t between staying in Afghanistan in perpetuity and this disastrous exit.
Biden’s incompetence led to this crisis. His remarks about keeping the deadline and staying the course demonstrate he lacks the competence to fix the mess he made.