The liberty principle for this Freedom Friday is that liberty requires honorable and honest leadership. President Joe Biden has lied to Americans. When Afghanistan fell on Sunday, Biden was on vacation at Camp David and made no effort to speak to the American people. The backlash was too harsh, and Biden was forced to return to Washington, D.C. to attempt to explain the disaster that took place after he ordered all U.S. forces and support personnel to be withdrawn from Afghanistan.
The only problem is that Biden did not attempt to explain went wrong. He declared that he “did not regret” his decision, and he used his 19-minute speech to blame the disaster on Donald Trump, Afghan government leaders, and the Afghan Army. According to Biden, everyone was at fault except Biden and his administration.
The American people are quite forgiving of leaders who mess up but admit their mistake. If Biden had been contrite and humble while admitting his mistake, things would have gone much better for him. Because he did not, he has been blasted from all sides. Thomas Spoehr wrote about Biden’s five statements that he considered “the most egregious” and his rebuttal. Biden’s 5 Mistruths on Afghanistan (dailysignal.com)
1. “We’ve developed counterterrorism over-the-horizon capability that will allow us to keep our eyes firmly fixed on any direct threats to the United States in the region and to act quickly and decisively if needed.”
This statement was crafted to allay fears that now that America has left, we won’t be able to continue to influence events in Afghanistan. It’s incorrect. With the Taliban now in complete control of the country, America’s ability to understand what is going on will be even less than what it was pre-9/11….
To strike Afghanistan will now require multihour flights from Qatar or carrier ships in the Persian Gulf, and will have to be done without eyes on the ground.
2. “There was only the cold reality of either following through on the agreement to withdraw our forces or escalating the conflict and sending thousands more American troops back into combat in Afghanistan, lurching into the third decade of conflict.”
Biden sought to paint his choices as binary: either withdraw or send thousands more troops to fight the Taliban. But there was already a third option, which was already working.
In 2014, then-President Barack Obama declared the combat mission in Afghanistan over. At that point, the U.S. military began operating in a train-and-assist and counterterrorism role in Afghanistan, with the Afghan army in the lead….
The Afghan army, with U.S. support, was standing and fighting the Taliban. Military leaders had advised that they thought that with 2,500 troops they could sustain the status quo in Afghanistan. What passed for the status quo in 2020 looks pretty attractive compared to the dumpster fire that is Afghanistan today.
3. “I know that there are concerns about why we did not begin evacuating Afghans, civilians sooner. Part of the answer is some of the Afghans did not want to leave earlier – still hopeful for their country.”
Maybe there was some small number of Afghans who remained hopeful, but most were hoping to leave, and today are stranded. In July, the U.S. had a visa application backlog of 18,000 Afghan translators and others who wanted to leave. The effort to get those people who had risked their lives to help the U.S. military should have started much earlier and gone much faster.
4. “The truth is: This did unfold more quickly than we had anticipated.”
Maybe the rapid advance of the Taliban surprised a White House who wanted to believe otherwise, but the potential that the Taliban could quickly retake Afghanistan was a commonly shared belief among the intelligence community and the Pentagon.
Intelligence agencies began to warn of a potential Taliban takeover soon after Biden’s decision to conduct a total withdrawal in April. Military leaders knew that once U.S. support was removed, including the vital contractor support that kept the Afghan air force in the air, there was a strong potential of collapse.
5. “American troops cannot and should not be fighting in a war and dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves.. We gave them every chance to determine their own future. What we could not provide them was the will to fight for that future… It is wrong to order American troops to up when Afghanistan’s own armed forces would not.”
Of the mistruths uttered by Biden, these were among the most galling. The Afghan army has been fighting and taking casualties in its war that would have made even the most hardened warrior blink. Casualties among the Afghan army are estimated to be 69,000 killed, more than America suffered in the Vietnam War.
The Afghan army did not stop fighting until it realized it had been abandoned, its logistics and air support stopped when America pulled out the 18,000 contractors who had been supporting its efforts.
Our president and his advisors are lying to us. Thankfully, Americans have eyes and can see what is happening. Even CNN is not buying their stories now instead of throwing up smoke in their defense. Biden and his administration are responsible for abandoning Afghanistan and bringing shame to our nation. Americans want their country to do their job, which is to defend and protect Americans. Instead, the Biden administration has abandoned 10,000-15,000 Americans and left them behind enemy lines in Afghanistan.