Sen. Roger Marshall told Newsmax Friday that it seemed at first that the quick takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban was because of an "intelligence failure," but now he thinks the failures that took place are because of putting too much focus on the politics involved to reverse plans that were made under former President Donald Trump.
"Now I realize that this House sees foreign policy through the lens of politics and through polling, as opposed to what's in the best interest of this nation," the Kansas Republican said on Newsmax's "John Bachman Now," where he appeared with Kash Patel, the former principal deputy to acting Director of National Intelligence Ric Grenell, to discuss the growing crisis.
The Trump administration had several contingency plans in place, and Patel said it seems "kind of intentional" that President Joe Biden did away with those plans, either because "they didn't know or didn't care, or there was just a huge oversight in a lack of understanding about the reality on the ground."
He said he also agrees with Marshall that the situation is "what happens when you politicize the national security apparatus of the United States of America" and when one doesn't put the mission first.
"I don't need a leaked State Department cable to tell me to prove to the American people that the Biden administration and (Joint Chiefs of Staff) Chairman Mark Milley are lying about being caught off guard."
Patel added that the Trump administration was "successful in safeguarding American security interests" while slowly withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, and handed off the plans to the Biden administration.
However, he said the incoming administration "simply chose to ignore it for politics because they did not want to give President (Donald) Trump credit for successfully withdrawing or beginning the withdrawal out of Afghanistan."
Marshall also slammed Biden for refusing to explain to the American people why there are 15,000 Americans who remain in Afghanistan and are "for all practical purposes being held hostage" by the Taliban.
"This is the same president that won't say why our troops are not going in there to free those Americans," Marshall said. "The British, they're doing it. They're already in there getting their citizens back. We have more assets available on the ground right now than the Brits do. Why are we letting the Taliban push us around like this? This will be a scar in America for decades to come."
Patel also slammed Biden for giving up the Bagram Air Base, which could have been used to employ and deploy forces and withdraw American citizens and military equipment.
"Biden just gave that up," he said. "That was never part of the Trump plan."
Patel added that the Kabul airport is civilian-controlled, but now, "we no longer have any say in its control or security, which is why you have Americans who can't even get through to the airport ... the State Department's outreach to American citizens in the country is that they're saying here's the phone number, see if you can make it through a wartorn nation and come get us. That's not how the United States secures its citizens overseas."
Marshall added that the situation has left him "frustrated," as "it's just inconceivable what this administration has done."
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