Joe Biden on Afghanistan, in his own words
The President has been in favour of withdrawal for years
President Biden has been talking about Afghanistan for the best part of two decades. A timeline of his views shows a consistent desire to withdraw American troops from the country. In a press conference yesterday evening Biden reiterated the same point he has been making for at least ten years: “I’ve argued for many years that our mission should be narrowly focused on counter-terrorism, not counter-insurgency or nation building.”
Nobody who has paid attention to the President can say this decision came as a surprise. We’ve collected some crucial moments from over the years:
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Then Senator Biden, like the majority of his colleagues, supported military action being taken against Afghanistan in the aftermath of 9/11. On Oct 22, 2001 he said: “our hope is that we will see a relatively stable government in Afghanistan, one that… provides the foundation for future reconstruction of that country.” He voted alongside 77 other Senators to give President Bush the authority to expand the war to Iraq in October 2002 — although as Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, he tried to draft a narrower authority for the conflict. That vote on Iraq would change the way Biden saw the Afghan conflict.
Biden’s first public admission of sceptism would come in November of 2005, during a ‘Meet the Press’ discussion:
In a 2008 interview, Biden used the war in Afghanistan to attack President Bush, claiming that the US should “urgently shift our focus” from Iraq to Afghanistan.
As Vice President, a 2008 visit to Kabul cemented Biden’s pessimistic feelings about the war in Afghanistan. One evening, the Vice-President “blew up”.
In 2009, Biden’s then foreign policy advisor Tony Blinken (now Secretary of State) revealed the view of the Vice President towards how the administration should proceed with Afghanistan:
Biden’s dissatisfaction with the war continued. In 2010, Richard Holbrooke, special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, reported that Biden lost his temper when discussing the conflict.
Holbrooke further asserted that the Vice President refused to be moved by accusations that, by pulling out of the country, he was abandoning Afghan girls. Biden responded strongly:
In 2011, according to President Obama, he advised against the raid on the Abbottabad compound in Pakistan that killed Osama Bin Laden:
Biden’s decision not to run for the Democratic nomination in 2016 was a disappointment for doves, who saw him as a contrast to Hillary Clinton’s more interventionist leanings.
Rather than viewing the Trump administration’s withdrawal efforts as having tied the hands of the current Democratic President, Trump in many ways fell in line with Joe Biden. A 2017 New York Times article explicitly described Joe Biden as having been the frontrunner to Trump’s Afghan strategy.
As President, on July 8th of this year, Biden announced his plans to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan, stating that:
The White House’s statement over the weekend — like the speech the President made yesterday — was another justification of beliefs long held by him:
The media establishment doing their upmost to avoid having to blame Biden for this humiliation… but he’s been exposed for the whole world to see.
This will dominate his whole presidency, it’s colossal.
Surely though a certain Messrs Bush and Blair, as those who originated this ill-starred missions under false prognoses, have more to answer here than either Biden or Trump or Johnson who all saw the need to pull the plug on the whole charade?
I know people who fought in Afghanistan. They had no real idea what they were fighting for and were at the mercy of local warlords manipulating them for personal gains under the banner of pious liberal Western slogans.
The withdrawl was done in a collosally cack-handed way, no doubt, but something like this was always going to happen, either slowly or rapidly. Better to cut the losses and focus on a foreign policy based on the real interests of the UK and US rather than grandiose and delusional nation-building efforts.
The only thing I disagree with is that something like this was always going to happen? Leaving arms behind? Not allowing people enough time to be processed and evacuated? Sorry cannot agree.
Did you not read the part where I said either slowly or rapidly? I meant the Taliban takeover. It was obvious from about 2011 that this would happen.
Probably if the Trump deal with the Taliban had stuck then a lot of the problems you mentioned would have been avoided, but alas it wasn’t to be.
What a sorry history of being wrong about nearly everything. The man is a fool.
Biden went about the withdrawal like a bull in a china shop, leaving broken china everywhere that will not be replaceable for quite some time, if ever!
“He assailed then-Afghan President Hamid Karzai over corruption and the growing heroin trade. “He was getting more and more irritated,” said Chuck Hagel “Eventually I had to grab Joe’s arm to settle him down.” Biden wrested free and slammed his fist on the table”
He almost went all Corn-Pop on Karzai’s A** – that’s real leadership!
Right when it counts though.
Any American child who was raised with the story of Br’er Rabbit and Tar Baby knew how this Afghanistan involvement would go… However, the idea is to carry the baton honorably over the line. Not drop it. Biden and his team had time to plan a strong and graceful exit, so why this disgraceful rout? Analogous to the southern border crisis, once again this administration snatches unnecessary defeat from the jaws of a stand-off (if never possible victory). A quasi-President out of an anomalous election, one who can apparently manage to step in manure in a one-horse paddock — how’s this working so far?
Because this administration is anti-American? That is what every single action they have done says.
Here in the US it feels like we’re being occupied by a hostile force that’s taken over all our institutions.
“I am not sending my boy back there to risk his life on behalf of women’s rights! It just won’t work, that’s not what they’re there for!
– Joe Biden according to Richard Holbrooke, 2010
Holbrooke further asserted that the Vice President refused to be moved by accusations that, by pulling out of the country, he was abandoning Afghan girls.”
But this is the core of the Problem.
Our NGOs are so sick and twisted they think sexual Cultural Imperialism is their main Mission. First they teach gender pronouns to the people in exchange for food, then they ride in their Mercedes to the 5 star hotel, they fly first class to the next benighted country to teach their government about Gender Pronouns if they want money for roads. This what the NOGs did in Afghanistan.
First in behind the Military are the MSM, that degenerate viper of Woke Imperialism – and they latched on women’s issues, and ended up getting USA to fight 20 years in Afghanistan over that ONE issue. Then the NGOs, those evil people out to bring every degenerate aspect of the West in exchange for money to the corrupt leaders. It is sick how much of it works. Unherd needs to do some stuff on the NGO mindset! Sikkos.
Western Perverted Cultural Imperialism has done so much harm to every thing it has touched the world would be better if we stayed home than let these insane, self loathing, Wokes, mess up foreign peoples by directing aid in exchange for for lip service to their ‘Sexual Diversity’ religion.
“MSM – that degenerate viper of Woke imperialism”
Yep – says it all.
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