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Biden is blaming Trump for his disastrous Afghanistan pullout

By Ben Marquis
|
April 7, 2023

President Joe Biden's White House released a summary report on the August 2021 withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Afghanistan on Thursday that purportedly outlined some of the "key decisions and challenges" that had to be faced.

The overarching theme of the report was abundantly clear – everything bad that happened was the fault of "deliberate" bad-faith choices and policies of former President Donald Trump's administration or the incompetent cowardice of the Afghan national forces, the Daily Mail reported.

Further, the Biden administration claims that anything bad that happened which can't be directly attributed to the Trump administration or the Afghan government was an unfortunate shortfall of honest and "good-faith efforts" to make the best of an inherited bad situation.

The Biden admin spins its narrative

With virtually no real advance notice, the White House National Security Council on Thursday released a 12-page summary report on the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, and the blame game began with the second paragraph on the first page, which stated, "President Biden’s choices for how to execute a withdrawal from Afghanistan were severely constrained by conditions created by his predecessor."

It went on to outline at length how former President Trump had steadily reduced U.S. forces in Afghanistan, unilaterally negotiated the Doha Agreement with the Taliban, excluded the Afghan government from those talks, unilaterally authorized the release of Taliban prisoners, and either failed or refused to make any actual plans to meet the initial withdrawal date of May 2021.

At the same time, the report lauded praise on President Biden and his administration for the decisions they were purportedly forced to make to deal with the bad hand they'd been dealt as best as possible.

The report did acknowledge there had been inaccurate intelligence assessments of various aspects of the situation – specifically regarding the rapidity with which the Taliban took over upon complete surrender of Afghan national forces – but those assessments had reportedly been made in good faith based on what was known at the time.

It also seemed to admit that the roughly two-week "noncombat evacuation operation" of U.S. troops, civilians, and allies from the airport in Kabul in the second half of August 2021 should have been started sooner but wasn't due to concerns about how it would be perceived by the broader public.

Biden is "very proud" of how withdrawal was conducted

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby appeared at Thursday's press briefing to deliver a brief summary of his own and take questions on the report that had just been delivered to reporters only a few minutes prior to the start of the briefing.

Several reporters highlighted the obvious blame-shifting and asked if the Biden White House accepted any of the responsibility for what occurred. Kirby responded by steadfastly defending the report's conclusions.

One reporter asked whether President Biden had "any regrets" about not starting the evacuation process earlier, to which Kirby replied, "The President is very proud of the manner in which the men and women of the military, the Foreign Service, the intelligence community -- I went on and on and on – conducted this – conducted this withdrawal."

It's all Trump's fault

Kirby went on to reiterate the Biden administration's view that the Trump administration had been "deliberate" in its "degradation and neglect" of the situation in Afghanistan, from reduced troop levels to allegedly freezing the Special Immigrant Visa program for Afghan allies, as well as that the intelligence community deserved no blame for its failed assessments in the early months of the Biden administration because it was "an honest effort by everybody to try to get at the right outcome."

At one point, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy bluntly asked, "John, who’s going to get fired over this?" Kirby, however, replied that the point of the document was simply to compile various after-action reports into a single summary and that "the purpose of it is not accountability."

Just moments later, another reporter asked how, specifically, Trump was to blame for the "disorganized and chaotic process of evacuation" that occurred months after he left office, but Kirby defended how the evacuation process was handled and said, "For all this talk of chaos, I just didn’t see it, not from my perch."

Trump fires back at "morons" in White House

Former President Trump responded to the Biden administration's summary report and subsequent briefing on the Afghanistan withdrawal with a blistering rebuttal posted to his Truth Social account.

"These Morons in the White House, who are systematically destroying our Country, headed up by the biggest Moron of them all, Hopeless Joe Biden, have a new disinformation game they are playing – Blame 'TRUMP' for their grossly incompetent SURRENDER in Afghanistan," Trump wrote.

He added, "I watched this disaster unfold just like everyone else. I saw them take out the Military FIRST, GIVE $85 Billion of military equipment, allow killing of our soldiers, and leave Americans behind. Biden is responsible, no one else!"