By Duncan Smith

No doubt The Wall Street Journal thought it had a ‘scoop’ in a report published this morning.

But the devil is in the details, as they say, and those details make it eminently plain that for two decades, our political, military, and intelligence leaders lied to and scammed the American people about what was really happening on the ground in Afghanistan.

The paper essentially reported that the current crop of generals and intelligence officials ‘tried to warn’ Biden that pulling out was a mistake (sound familiar?). And why? Because Afghanistan ‘just wasn’t stable’ and in fact was becoming less so (again — sound familiar?).

The WSJ:

In his Monday speech defending America's chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan, President Biden said he would not shrink from his share of responsibility.

That would include his decision to bring home U.S. troops, which was made against the recommendations of his top military generals and many diplomats, who warned that a hasty withdrawal would undermine security in Afghanistan, several administration and defense officials said.

The president's top generals, including Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley, urged Mr. Biden to keep a force of about 2,500 troops, the size he inherited, while seeking a peace agreement between warring Afghan factions, to help maintain stability. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, who previously served as a military commander in the region, said a full withdrawal wouldn't provide any insurance against instability.

In a series of meetings leading up to his decision, military and intelligence officials told Mr. Biden that security was deteriorating in Afghanistan, and they expressed concerns both about the capabilities of the Afghan military and the Taliban's ability to take over major Afghan cities.

Other advisers, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan, raised the possibility of Taliban attacks on U.S. forces and diplomats as well as the Afghans who for two decades worked alongside them. Ultimately, neither disagreed with the president knowing where he stood.

Mr. Biden, however, was committed to ending the U.S. military role in the country. The president told his policy advisers the U.S. was providing life support for the Afghan government, which in his view, was corrupt and had squandered billions of dollars in American assistance, according to current and former administration officials. He wanted to reorient American foreign policy onto what he sees as more pressing international matters, including competition with China and domestic issues including infrastructure and battling Covid.

So, after 20 years the U.S. made zero progress in ‘stabilizing’ Afghanistan? None?

Why weren’t the American people told this much sooner?

And if so, why did America remain anyway?

This is worse than pathetic, it is criminal. But as usual, we can expect that no one will be held to account because no one in government ever is.

Biden himself said in 2003 (not that he remembers) that the mission in Afghanistan was about nation-building.

Now, suddenly, it isn’t?

The situation on the ground, in the villages, in the most rural of areas (it’s all rural in Afghanistan, really) was no different at the beginning of Biden’s term than it was at the beginning of Trump’s or Obama’s terms.

The only difference between then and now are the deaths and injuries — and hundreds of billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars spent.

If we as a country allow our leaders to do this to us again, we deserve the collapse that will follow.

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