Former Acting Department of Homeland Security Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli told Newsmax Tuesday that the Afghanistan withdrawal debacle is the “biggest” failure of President Joe Biden’s 50-year political career.
“This was an incredible intelligence failure, but it starts at the top with Joe Biden” Cuccinelli said on “The Chris Salcedo Show” Tuesday. “He's got an awful lot of experience, but time dealing with an issue doesn't help make you right. Apparently if you're Joe Biden, this is one more mistake, and it's the biggest of his career as it relates to Afghanistan.”
As the U.S. tried to drawdown from its last 2,500 troops in the war-torn country this week, Taliban forces rapidly overtook the nation in 10 days, culminating Sunday by conquering the capital city of Kabul, sending refugees, American nationals, and diplomats, scrambling to catch flights out of the country.
The images of Afghans clinging to the C-17 cargo plane as it was taking off from the airport, and helicopters evacuating personnel from the U.S. Embassy, were eerily like video of the evacuation of Saigon during the end of the Vietnam War in 1975.
“You don't pull your security forces out before your civilians,” Cuccinelli said. “The whole refugee question, who we can allow to come, who aren't we going to allow to come? You just you don't decide those things sitting at an airport under fire. That's a terrible arrangement.”
Cuccinelli was joined on the show by author, and retired U.S. Army Gen. Anthony Tata, who said the Biden plan is nothing like the plan of former President Donald Trump, who initially negotiated the drawdown with the Taliban last year.
The Trump plan included a conditions-based withdrawal with heavy doses of deterrence involved and timelines that didn't have was leaving during the peak fighting season, which is the summer, and spring, and fall, and we drew down about 2,500 soldiers last winter,” Tata said. “This is a colossal failure on for President Biden and his team.”
In a speech from the White House Monday, Biden admitted that the Taliban’s advance occurred much faster than the administration thought, but it was still the right move to end America’s 20-year-old conflict.
“When I made the decision to end the U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan, I judged that it was not in the national interest of the United States of America to continue fighting this war indefinitely,” he said. “I made the decision with clear eyes, and I am briefed daily on the battlefield updates.”
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