There was an argument during Tuesday’s Senate hearing on Afghanistan’s withdrawal from which it became clear why President Joe Biden decided to withdraw troops there as soon as possible.
It came at a time when General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff, explained why he and other officers – army officers, air force, navy officers and navy officers – all agreed that we should leave by August 1. 31. Doha, which President Donald Trump signed with the Taliban in early 2020 (without any involvement from the Afghan government), required the complete removal of foreign forces. If U.S. troops were to stay longer than August, Milley said, the Taliban would resume fighting and, to avoid such attacks, “we would need 30,000 troops” and incur “significant losses.”
And yet, as Milley also testified Tuesday, he, Chiefs, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and other military officials advised Biden to deploy 2,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan over the deadline of August 31. The difference is that these troops will not be involved in the “mission”. any military “. Instead, they would “continue” to go to the “diplomatic mission”.
However, it is absolutely impossible that the Taliban noticed semantic diversity. In their eyes, 2,500 American troops would be considered 2,500 American soldiers, if their mission was officially described as “military” or “diplomatic”. As a result, the Taliban would start fighting again, as Milley had said, and Biden would then face a daunting task: withdrawing from the attack or sending another 30,000 troops.
In the first nine months of Barack Obama’s presidency, the generals were pushing for an escalation of the war in Afghanistan – an increase of 40,000 troops – and moving to a state of emergency (a.k.a nation ”). Biden, who was then vice-president, was the only one to suggest an increase of only 10,000 troops, to be used only to train the Afghan army and to fight terrorists along the Afghan-Pakistan border. As Obama recalls in his memoir, Biden pleaded with the inexperienced new president not to be imprisoned “by the generals. Give them 40,000 troops now, and in 18 months they will say they need another 40,000 to win the war. If Obama later admitted, Biden was right.
And so, if Milley advised Biden to deploy 2,500 troops in Afghanistan, while admitting that another 30,000 might be needed if the Taliban were to start a war, it would be easy to imagine Biden thinking, “They are trying to imprison me. Vietnam, ”which angered Biden when he first joined the Senate in 1973 and has formulated his views on war and peace.
Milley and General Kenneth McKenzie, commander-in-chief, both admitted at the time that the U.S. military had been embroiled in a 20-year war in Afghanistan, the longest war in the world. American History. Officials at the time tried to form the Afghan army in their own way, making it dependent on American technology and support, so that as soon as we left, collapse was inevitable. Milley also noted that he and other officials paid close attention to Afghan culture and the negative impact of Afghanistan’s government corruption and widespread lack of legitimacy. So Biden may have been thinking, why should he pay attention to everything these people said about the war in Afghanistan, which they had been wrong from the beginning?
Biden made several mistakes, some serious, with speed and sequence of withdrawals. Above all, he had to remove all spies, contractors, American citizens and Afghan aides before removing all troops. But overall he was right, and the generals, as they now admit without hesitation, were wrong.