Fox News host Chris Wallace took Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to task Sunday for talking out of both sides of his mouth during an interview with the Kentucky Republican on the subject of the American withdrawal from Afghanistan.
McConnell told Wallace he considered the U.S. war and occupation of Afghanistan to be a “complete success,” but also insisted that there should be a permanent military presence of some 2,500 American troops, even though our forces have already been in the country for two decades.
Wallace quickly noted that military advisers to President Joe Biden have estimated a force of 10,000 U.S. soldiers would be required if the Americans remain:
“Does President Biden have a point there? If in April, he had said, ‘Hey, the Trump deal is off. We’re staying in. In fact, we’re going to beef up the number of troops,’ he contends we’ve been back in a full-scale war with the Taliban and, unfortunately, taking a lot of casualties.”
McConnell said the assessment from the military was “totally not accurate,” implying that he knows better than the top brass of Pentagon:
“We haven’t lost as many as 13 people, which we lost Thursday, in any of the last four years. Our casualties since 2014 have been quite modest. Quite modest.
“Remember in the whole war, we have regretfully lost a couple thousand of our people. That’s very regretful but the Afghans have lost 65,000. They have been fighting. And we’ve been in the background helping them with counterterrorism and the ongoing training of the military.”
And how did all of that “training of the military” turn out at the end of the day? The Taliban showed up and the Afghan government forces either surrendered or walked away from their duties, unwilling to fight in spite of their training.
If Mitch McConnell wants a permanent U.S. presence in one of the most unstable and violent countries on the planet, he needs to grab a gun and volunteer himself for the mission. Otherwise, he needs to leave those decisions to the commander in chief.
Here’s the video from Fox News:
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