Afghanistan: Thousands Abandoned, Intelligence Gone
Afghanistan: Thousands Abandoned, Intelligence Gone
Never, ever, ever forget that the reason Afghanistan has descended into a chaotic disaster is because Joe Biden and the Obama Retreads left without considering the consequences.
Biden’s poll numbers began to plummet due to Afghanistan and have never recovered. This administration should never be allowed to sweep what they did there under the rug. We have covered some of the massive failures on this blog – the failed drone strike that killed innocent civilians, the failed vetting that let we-don’t-exactly-know-who into this country, and the failed evacuation that left thousands of Americans and permanent legal residents behind.
After repeatedly fudging the numbers of who was left behind in Afghanistan, the administration has now said that over NINE HUNDRED people have been “relocated” out of Afghanistan. NINE. HUNDRED.
The Biden administration has helped relocate about 900 U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents from Afghanistan to the United States following the withdrawal from Afghanistan, the State Department said Monday.”
The department said officials are in contact with “fewer than a dozen U.S. citizens” in Afghanistan who want to leave and who have the necessary documents to do so, without providing a timeline on when those individuals would leave.”
Anyone remember the bullshit line that the Biden administration was feeding the media that there were “about 100” Americans who were still there who wanted to get out? And we already KNEW that the administration had been lying through their teeth about the numbers left behind. The numbers have quietly increased from “about 100” to “we’ve gotten over 300 people out” to “we have gotten 900 people out” to… how many THOUSANDS are we talking about???
The State Department believes as many as 14,000 U.S. legal permanent residents remain in Afghanistan, Foreign Policy has learned, as the agency faces increasing scrutiny from Congress about the status of U.S. citizens and green card holders that are still stranded in the Taliban-controlled country.”
Insert your choice of expletive here. This report of 14,000 American citizens and legal residents actually came out in November, and got no mainstream media coverage. There might have been a little more outrage, don’t you think?
The State Department insisted it does not have an exact tally of U.S. legal permanent residents (LPRs) in Afghanistan in a statement to Foreign Policy. “We do not have an exact number of LPRs and their immediate family members who have departed or who remain in Afghanistan,” a State Department spokesperson said in an email. “In this extraordinary situation we are facing in Afghanistan, we have helped LPRs seeking assistance to depart wherever possible.”
Lawmakers have criticized the State Department for being too slow to release specific numbers on how many citizens, legal permanent residents, and Afghans who supported the U.S. war effort remain in the country. Administration officials said the numbers are difficult to track and constantly shifting while infuriated U.S. lawmakers charge the administration is failing in its duty to keep track of the statistics or is keeping the full scope of people left behind under wraps. In the month after the U.S. withdrawal, the State Department repeatedly said there were around 100 U.S. citizens still in the country seeking to leave—until it revealed in recent weeks there were around 400 people.”
As Ed Morrissey at Hot Air points out, 900 people is a mere fraction of 14,000.
So 900 out of 14,000 is just 6.5% of the total number of Americans stuck in Afghanistan. There may be some who don’t want to leave, but do we really think that 93% of the Americans who went to Afghanistan to help the US mission there REALLY prefer to stick around now that the Taliban has taken charge? Ninety percent? Seventy-five percent? In the middle of a coming famine, no less? That construct is absolutely absurd.”
The new number is around 550 higher than the last publicly claimed amount of successful exfiltrations from a couple of months ago. At that rate (275 a month for 13,100 Americans still left), it will take us nearly FOUR YEARS to get all of our Americans out of Afghanistan.”
Where’s the media? Trying to cover up for Biden, of course, who isn’t looking at his poll numbers anymore because they suck so badly. Afghanistan is completely on Biden’s hands, and the administration and the media know it. That’s why they’re trying to hide it.
Remember that other line that Biden pushed during the withdrawl, about having “over the horizon” intelligence capability in Afghanistan?
Yes, that talking point, as we all knew at the time, is a complete and total lie.
Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, said in an interview with The Associated Press that the departure of U.S. military and intelligence assets from Afghanistan has made it much harder to track al Qaeda and other extremist groups inside Afghanistan.”
“We’re probably at about 1 or 2% of the capabilities we once had to look into Afghanistan,” he said, adding that this makes it “very hard, not impossible” to ensure that neither al Qaeda nor the Islamic State group’s Afghanistan affiliate can pose a threat to the United States.”
Speaking at the Pentagon, McKenzie said it’s clear that al Qaeda is attempting to rebuild its presence inside Afghanistan, which was the base from which it planned the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks against the United States. He said some militants are coming into the country through its porous borders, but it is hard for the U.S. to track numbers.”
McKenzie and other senior U.S. military and national security officials had said before the U.S. withdrawal that it would complicate efforts to keep a lid on the al Qaeda threat, in part because of the loss of on-the-ground intelligence information and the absence of a U.S.-friendly government in Kabul. The U.S. says it will rely on airstrikes from drones and other aircraft based beyond Afghanistan’s borders to respond to any extremist threats against the U.S. homeland.”
McKenzie said no such strikes have been conducted since the U.S. completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan on Aug. 30. He added that America’s ability to conduct such strikes is based on the availability of intelligence, overhead imagery and other information and communications, “and that architecture is still being developed right now.”
This is not rocket science. When you have no eyes on the ground, either your own or those willing to work with you, then you have no intelligence to do anything from “over the horizon.” We have no one left in Afghanistan because Biden pulled them all out. We have no one willing to work with us because Biden callously abandoned those who should have gotten out due to working with us over the last 20 years. And the last time the Pentagon thought they had “over the horizon” capability, seven children ended up dead in a drone strike in Kabul.
But Joe Biden got us out of Afghanistan! Don’t you feel BETTER and SAFER now???
Welcome Instapundit Readers!