US hawks in favor of American interventionism are refusing to admit that God’s own country has been defeated in Afgha-nistan. Certain Rep-ublican hawks in the U.S. Senate are even arguing that some troops should remain on the ground in Afghanistan. According to Lindsey Graham, a Republican member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the U.S. must throw its weight behind anti-Taliban armed forces.
Most worrying for U.S. hawks was the quick collapse of the previous regime’s army, which supposedly comprised of 300,000 soldiers who were trained and equipped by Washington, in the face of the Taliban, which had an approximately 70,000-strong force. U.S. President Biden had even argued that should American troops withdraw, this army would be capable of defeating the Taliban. Now, Americans are debating how this army vanished into thin air in a matter of days.
The Biden administration’s decision to withdraw, the chaos that ensued during the evacuation of civilians at Kabul airport, as well as the bomb attack on August 26, which was reportedly claimed by Daesh, are all being investigated by the U.S. Congress.
The secret hearings of the Armed Services Committees last week saw mutual finger-pointing that brought to minds the old adage of “victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan.”
According to the soldiers, the Biden administration was responsible for the U.S.’s withdrawal decision, while the State Department was responsible for the evacuations.
Among the senior soldiers who testified during the U.S. Congress hearing were Chief of Staff Mark Milley, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, and General Frank McKenzie, who is commander of the Central Command (CENTCOM) and responsible for the “Greater Middle East,” which includes Afghanistan. Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Bilinken was also among those who testified in Congress.
The arguments made by military officials reflected the deep divisions between the Department of State and the Pentagon. They claimed that they had advised the Biden administration about possible developments that would arise from the decision to withdraw. Mainstream and Trumpist Republicans also had different takes with regard to the statements of the military. Some Republicans demanded the resignations of Chief of Staff Milley, Secretary of State Blinken, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, as well as U.S. President Biden, as they held them directly responsible for the fiasco that transpired.
Republicans defending the military are concerned that the long-held traditional harmony between the Republican Party and Pentagon has been shattered. According to some analysts, who point that the Republican Party has turned its back on troops, this development marks a tectonic shift.
“We have to admit this was the State Department and the White House that caused this catastrophe, not the Defense Department,” argued Mike Rogers, a senior Republican member of the House Armed Services Committee.
According to Liz Cheney, the daughter of former neocon U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney, who played an instrumental role in the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, and a member of the House of Representatives, Trumpist Republicans’ criticism of the Pentagon is vile opportunism. Liz Cheney, a prominent Republican in the U.S. Congress, was fir-ed from her position as ch-air of the House Republic-an Conference at the be-h-est of Trumpist lawmakers.
Soldiers who gave their sworn statements to the U.S. Congress argue that their role in the situation is subject to the decisions of political authority.
They even claim that they advised the Biden administration that the United States should maintain a small force in Afghanistan.
However, U.S. President Biden said in an interview on ABC News on August 18 that military officials said no such thing.
According to commentary made on U.S. media, Biden may have “forgotten” these recommendations.
General McKenzie, who testified at congressional hearings, stated that he was in the room when the recommendations were made and said, “I was present when that discussion occurred, and I am confident that the president heard all the recommendations and listened to them very thoughtfully,”
According to McKenzie, however, the “Doha Agreement” that Trump struck with the Taliban also played a crucial role in the Afghan fiasco.
These hearings were the closest thing to an admission that the United States had in fact lost the war in Afghanistan. Chief of Staff Mark Milley admitted defeat by saying, “Strategically, the war is lost, and the enemy is in Kabul,” all while drawing attention to the fact that the decision to withdraw unilaterally brought the U.S.’s credibility into question in the eyes of its allies and partners abroad.