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Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, August 23, 2021

It was in the waning days of November 2001 that Taliban leaders began to reach out to Hamid Karzai, who would soon become the interim president of Afghanistan: They wanted to make a deal.

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Taliban fighters brandished Kalashnikovs and shook their fists in the air after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, defying American warnings that if they did not hand over Osama Bin Laden, their country would be bombed to smithereens.

The bravado faded once American bombs began to fall. Within a few weeks, many of the Taliban had fled the Afghan capital, terrified by the low whine of approaching B-52 aircraft. Soon, they were a spent force, on the run across the arid mountain-scape of Afghanistan. As one of the journalists who covered them in the early days of the war, I saw their uncertainty and loss of control firsthand.

"The Taliban were completely defeated, they had no demands, except amnesty," recalled Barnett Rubin, who worked with the United Nations' political team in Afghanistan at the time. Messengers shuttled back and forth between Mr. Karzai and the headquarters of the Taliban leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, in Kandahar. Mr. Karzai envisioned a Taliban surrender that would keep the militants from playing any significant role in the country's future.

[T]he Americans had no interest in leaving Mullah Omar to live out his days anywhere in Afghanistan. The United States wanted him captured or dead.

Almost 20 years later, the United States did negotiate a deal to end the Afghan war, but the balance of power was entirely different by then -- it favored the Taliban. For some veterans of America's entanglement in Afghanistan, it is hard to imagine that talks with the Taliban in 2001 would have yielded a worse outcome than what the United States ultimately got.

Let's set the record straight for all of those critical of today's pullout after 20 years of propping up a facade of a functioning government with trillions of dollars and thousands of American lives. We had victory and perhaps our best opportunity to stabilize Afghanistan in our grasp mere months after entering the nation in response to the attacks of 9/11. But our leadership failed this nation - as it did at almost every single step in prosecuting war during the W. Bush Administration - first by refusing to accept victory in Afghanistan and secondly in destabilizing Iraq and unleashing a new creature of devastation and terror soon to be called ISIS/ISIL.

We had a chance to do what no nation in history had done, but just like W's National Guard career, it was pissed away out of the hubris, arrogance, and PNAC-driven madness of Bush's malgovernance. Now the chickens have finally come home to roost and everyone wants to blame our current coop-tender, Joe Biden, for dice that were cast and tallied two decades ago.

#1 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-23 08:16 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 8

Money quotes:

"One mistake was that we turned down the Taliban's attempt to negotiate," Carter Malkasian, a former senior adviser to Gen. Joseph Dunford, who was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during parts of the Obama and Trump administrations, said of the American decision not to discuss a Taliban surrender nearly 20 years ago.

"We were hugely overconfident in 2001, and we thought the Taliban had gone away and weren't going to come back," he said. "We also wanted revenge, and so we made a lot of mistakes that we shouldn't have made."

By the time the Trump administration reached a deal with the Taliban, the United States was exhausted by war, with little leverage given that it had announced its intention to leave Afghanistan.

The Taliban, by contrast, went into the negotiations far stronger than before. Their safe haven in Pakistan, to which they had fled in 2001, had turned into a supply line. And even at the height of the American troop presence, the insurgents were able to keep a growing stream of recruits coming both from Afghanistan and Pakistan, fueled in part by rising profits from the opium trade.

"When I heard the U.S. were going to meet in Doha with the Taliban and without the Afghan government, I said, That's not a peace negotiation, those are surrender talks,'" said Ryan Crocker, a former ambassador to Afghanistan.

"So, now the talks were all about us retreating without the Taliban shooting at us as we went," Mr. Crocker added, "and we got nothing in return."

#2 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-23 08:27 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

You know what caused the most U.S. deaths? Hubris.

#3 | Posted by LegallyYourDead at 2021-08-23 11:34 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

In 2001 the best war that our "wartime President" had to work with was Afghanistan and he couldn't be sure that he and Cheney would be so lucky as to get another one going in Iraq.

He told his biographer what he intended to do when he was still Gov. of Texas.

#4 | Posted by danni at 2021-08-23 11:47 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#1 | Posted by tonyroma

In fairness Tony, that is hindsight. I don't disagree things could have been much better if we had but at that time if we would have negotiated with the Taliban, what do you think the reaction of the American people would have been?

#5 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2021-08-23 12:01 PM | Reply

You know what caused the most U.S. deaths? Hubris.

#3 | Posted by LegallyYourDead

Republican leadership - a million foreigners under bush, a half million americans under trump. How many people will the next republican president kill?

Thanks to biden, garland, manchin, and sinema all refusing to fight back in this civil war against fascism, we'll get to find out.

#6 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-23 12:20 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

what do you think the reaction of the American people would have been?

It should have been that the US had quickly succeeded in its goal of making sure the Taliban and Afghanistan could no longer be used as a base to launch terror attacks against the US and Western nations.

Remember what our original goal actually was. It wasn't what it turned out to be after 20 years of trying to create a stable central government uniting the various tribes.

#7 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-23 12:22 PM | Reply

Even if we had accepted their surrender then. I believe they would have simply waited us out, and eventually regained power. Their surrender might simply have gotten us to leave sooner.

#8 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2021-08-23 12:35 PM | Reply

This is one of the dumbest deflections I've seen by the Dems. First off, there is AMPLE evidence to show that any central figure of the Taliban, ISIS, Al Qaeda, etc. doesn't exist and making a deal with any one person or group in those sects means nothing. That's been proven since the 80s. Ask Obama about making deals and then having those groups get more powerful.

But beyond that, the entire response is just a Liberal way of trying to save face. The pull-out went terrible. I'm on the side of us leaving exactly how we did but completely understand the response. And technically, the only real issue Reps have isn't the way we did it, it was that innocent people had to feel the brunt of it...something both sides will call each other out for at ANY time and use as ammunition to attack the other side regardless of what the topic is. This response is totally predictable. And Dems have used this response against Reps on many occasions, so trying to use evidence from 20 years ago to justify and save face today is stupid. There is no nice way to put it, it's freaking stupid. Just get over it. Biden is going to look bad, just like Dems call out Rep POTUSs in very similar situations (like bolstering Saddam only to have him become enemy #1).

The worst part of it all is that Biden and Kamala won't just explain it away as learning situations. It didn't go the best but there are things we can learn from. That's all they have to do. But Liberals have absolutely no ability to show humility in any way, that's also been proven multiple times in the 21st century. Kamala's reaction today is regrettable and it shows the true hypocrisy. She basically said that since there are still problems occurring today because of the pullout, it's not right to discuss blame games or talk about anything else. Which, if any one of you can do some research (since you are so young) for the past 30 or so years, Dems have absolutely no issue with demonizing and drilling the Reps for things that are still going on. So her response is political bs.

Things didn't go perfect. So what? Don't try to save face by bringing up things from 20 years ago. W's administration made mistakes and there was no end to Liberal whining. Now that a Democrat's administration made clear mistakes, all of a sudden it's something that shouldn't be discussed until it becomes history. Just own up to the mistakes. But also own up to what went right. This is how you get a "lessons learned" document that illustrates how to improve. But instead of trying to discuss ways to improve, Dems are busy trying to find 20 year old evidence that has nothing to do with the mistakes made this time. In other words, mistakes were made 20 years ago so Dems are trying to excuse themselves by saying mistakes are fine. It's pathetic. It only makes the country worse.

#9 | Posted by humtake at 2021-08-23 12:52 PM | Reply | Funny: 2

This is one of the dumbest deflections I've seen by the Dems. First off, there is AMPLE evidence to show that any central figure of the Taliban, ISIS, Al Qaeda, etc. doesn't exist and making a deal with any one person or group in those sects means nothing. That's been proven since the 80s. Ask Obama about making deals and then having those groups get more powerful.

#9 | Posted by humtake

So who was trump talking to when he negotiated our surrender to the taliban?

#10 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-23 12:54 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

Things didn't go perfect. So what? Don't try to save face by bringing up things from 20 years ago.
#9 | Posted by humtake

Yeah lets not talk about how republicans created this disaster. Lets focus on how democrats weren't able to find a perfect magical solution for it.

#11 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-23 12:55 PM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 1

And technically, the only real issue Reps have isn't the way we did it

#9 | Posted by humtake

The only issue reps have is that it was done by a dem. Trump negotiated our surrender so he'd get points from the "announcement" since announcements are all he cared about, but he didn't have the balls to actually pull out.

If the pullout had gone smoother under biden repubs would be doing the same exact amount of screaming and whining and blaming. If the pullout had gone worse under trump they wouldnt have a single complaint about it.

This is the party that said it's not fair to appoint a supreme court justice 9 months before an election under a democrat, then appointed one 1 month before an election under a republican.

Your party has zero credibility on anything. They just lie or completely change their argument to whatever they think helps them take more power. And the last thing they care about is the lives of people in the mideast.

#12 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-23 12:59 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

"The pull-out went terrible."

Was it any worse than the invasion, and the 20+ years of conflict?

#13 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-23 01:15 PM | Reply

Was it any worse than the invasion...

You mean all that waiting around pretending the "Northern Alliance" was going to do the fighting?

#14 | Posted by REDIAL at 2021-08-23 01:18 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

Snatched from the jaws of victory by Bushturd2 because he didn't negotiate with terriers and HUMPY says this...

Things didn't go perfect. So what? Don't try to save face by bringing up things from 20 years ago. W's administration made mistakes and there was no end to Liberal whining.

#9 | POSTED BY HUMTAKE AT 2021-08-23 12:52 PM | FLAG PPPFFFFTTTTTTT!

We're bringing it up because it was stupid back then and obviously you've learned nothing. Your whining reminds me of when it was revealed definitively (by Bushturd2) that there were no WMDs after your pig preznit started borrowing and spending copious amounts of money from China to pay for a needless war that at the time was costing twice as much as the war in Afghanistan... a war that could have ended a decade and a half sooner... with a victory no less.

He lost that war to go after the man that tried to kill his daddy rather than after the man that killed Americans.

YOU PEOPLE ARE FEKKIN IDIOTS!

Do you see how useless your phony posturing is? You were stupid when you defended it back then... and you did... and you're stupid for defending it now.

ergo GFY HUMPY your party is disgraced and so are you.

#15 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2021-08-23 01:24 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

"The pull-out went terrible."

That's what she said.

#16 | Posted by truthhurts at 2021-08-23 01:49 PM | Reply | Funny: 7

I always felt our occupation of Afghanistan was all about control of the poppy fields and maybe an oil pipeline or two.

The Taliban had banned growing poppies and the powers that be didn't like losing all those profits. America's opium problems skyrocketed after we took the country.

#17 | Posted by 503jc69 at 2021-08-23 07:02 PM | Reply

Of course they tried to surrender.

They had nothing to do with 9/11.

The Saudi's did and Osama Bin Laden was in Pakistan.

The BushJr administration ignored all intelligence reports regarding the incoming attacks.

Cheney made sure NORAD was out of commission.

They wanted a way into Iraq and this was their golden ticket.

#18 | Posted by ClownShack at 2021-08-23 07:21 PM | Reply

The Taliban had banned growing poppies and the powers that be didn't like losing all those profits. America's opium problems skyrocketed after we took the country.
#17 | POSTED BY 503JC69

They also outlawed pedophilia. Guess what was rampant in the Aghan army?

Yup, pedophilia. Oh, and a whole bunch of heroin. Soldiers high on heroin.

God bless the US soldiers, they tried. But there was ZERO efficacy. Just in terms of the heroin and pedophilia, Taliban rule looks like an upgrade.

When 95% of the planet's heroin is originating from poppies in Afghanistan and Afghan army leadership are known to fnkc little boys AFTER the Taliban is out of power, one really has to wonder WTF we are doing over there?

#19 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2021-08-23 09:09 PM | Reply

#19

You don't have a clue what you're talking about.

Pedophilia has always been common with prominent Afghan men of certain tribes. Maybe it's something they inherited from Alexander the Great...but it's certainly not limited to this this simple-minded concept you seem to have where the Taliban don't do it, but the rest do.

And Opium? YGTBFSM. The Taliban controlled that whole operation. In fact TB-controlled narco labs were some of the most common targets for US airstrikes. It was actually ISIS-K who had a problem with the narcotics trade, deeming it un-Islamic.

Based on your logic, I think you should be throwing your support behind ISIS-K.

Afghanistan is a complicated place. It's very difficult to bin them. I have more experience than probably anyone here...maybe with the exception of Boaz, but I still shake my head. But most of what you think you know about the Taliban, or Afghans in general is shaped by people who were viewing that culture through their own cultural lens.

#20 | Posted by madbomber at 2021-08-23 11:44 PM | Reply

Afghanistan is a complicated place.

Wow. That was exactly my point. Hence, clearly, I do know what I'm talking about. The info I provided is factual. If you don't know that, it's you who needs a clue.

I think you should be throwing your support behind ISIS-K.

HAHA! ---- you, troll.

But most of what you think you know about the Taliban, or Afghans in general is shaped by people who were viewing that culture through their own cultural lens.
#20 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER

An appeal to authority. Well, if that's true, you're completely unconvincing. Yet, ultimately, you prove that you have no idea what information I've used to develop an informed opinion of the Taliban. Swallow your ego a bit. You're certainly not an expert on everything (economics, virology, crime -- JFC, every topic that comes across this site, etc.), yet for some odd reason you're hell bent on convincing everyone here that you are.

Why is that? What happened?

#21 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2021-08-23 11:59 PM | Reply

"In July 2000, Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, collaborating with the UN to eradicate heroin production in Afghanistan, declared that growing poppies was un-Islamic, resulting in one of the world's most successful anti-drug campaigns. The Taliban enforced a ban on poppy farming via threats, forced eradication, and public punishment of transgressors. The result was a 99% reduction in the area of opium poppy farming in Taliban-controlled areas, roughly three quarters of the world's supply of heroin at the time.[18] The ban was effective only briefly due to the deposition of the Taliban in 2002."
en.wikipedia.org

Seems America's occupation put a stop that that nonsense and got the goods moving again.

#22 | Posted by 503jc69 at 2021-08-24 12:05 AM | Reply

But most of what you think you know about the Taliban, or Afghans in general is shaped by people who were viewing that culture through their own cultural lens.

#20 | Posted by madbomber

But most of what you think you know about the DEMOCRATS, or LIBERALS in general is shaped by people who were viewing that culture through their own FOX NEWS PROPGANDA.

#23 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-24 12:12 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

In 2001 the best war that our "wartime President" had to work with was Afghanistan and he couldn't be sure that he and Cheney would be so lucky as to get another one going in Iraq.

He told his biographer what he intended to do when he was still Gov. of Texas.

#4 | Posted by danni

Remember that Paul O'Neill, then sec of treas, recounted that at the very first meeting of the NSC, aides walked in with maps of Iraq. Cheney said, "we're going in."

That was FEBRUARY of 2001, months before 9/11.

America hasn't been the same since Bush f****d up the world, blew the budget through the roof, and tarnished America's image around the world with his fake Texas-accented hubris.

#24 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2021-08-24 03:31 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

"Why is that? What happened?"

In this case? With regards to narco-labs in Afghanistan?

I know it because I led the targeting effort for a year over there. If you know anyone else who did, have him or her come up on freq.

#25 | Posted by madbomber at 2021-08-24 08:56 AM | Reply

When 95% of the planet's heroin is originating from poppies in Afghanistan and Afghan army leadership are known to fnkc little boys AFTER the Taliban is out of power, one really has to wonder WTF we are doing over there?

#19 | POSTED BY RSTYBEACH11 AT 2021-08-23 09:09 PM | REPLY | FLAG:?!

of the two offenses mentioned in that part of your discussion the one that is affecting us the most is the one killing an American every 17 minutes.

Some people like the Sacklers made a fortune off this war.

China got to do some serious Karma payback with this war. It took them less than a century to flip the tables on drugs and debt in their dealings with the west.

As far as sexual escapades among soldiers and boys... it is a tale as old as warfare. Not just among Afghanis... but considering the native Afghan military has historical roots with Alexander the Great where such things were permitted. Alexander was a mighty warrior type despite his proclivities our military isn't currently supposed to indulge in. He also left a legacy of some kick@$$ warriors who've expelled 3 superpowers. Apparently, Allah isn't smiting them for it.

Besides... the purpose of war is to turn men into corpses, boys into cripples, women into widows, girls into prostitutes, and children into orphans... until some ------ muckity muck decides to stop.

it's not meant to save anyone... it's purpose is to destroy.

#26 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2021-08-24 10:09 AM | Reply

If Trump had pulled out at every opportunity, he would never have been able to letch on Ivanka!

#27 | Posted by john47 at 2021-08-24 10:22 AM | Reply

"We also wanted revenge"

I was told back in 2001 by Team Bush that anyone who didn't want revenge wasn't with us and was a traitor. Once again Republicans are our worst enemies.

#28 | Posted by Sycophant at 2021-08-24 10:33 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

The money quote:

"When I heard the U.S. were going to meet in Doha with the Taliban and without the Afghan government, I said, That's not a peace negotiation, those are surrender talks,'" said Ryan Crocker, a former ambassador to Afghanistan.

"So, now the talks were all about us retreating without the Taliban shooting at us as we went," Mr. Crocker added, "and we got nothing in return."

#29 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2021-08-24 12:46 PM | Reply

... we got nothing in return."

What do you mean?

We got the bill.

And an opioid epidemic.

Mission Accomplished!

#30 | Posted by ClownShack at 2021-08-24 12:51 PM | Reply

"and we got nothing in return."

#29 | POSTED BY AMERICANUNITY AT 2021-08-24 12:46 PM | FLAG:

We got to leave.

and we're almost there! So close to Mission Accomplished.

#31 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2021-08-24 01:39 PM | Reply

and no that's not a reference to Iraq lol.

A withdrawl mission is a hell of a lot better one than a permanent occupation and nation building mission of a place that does not want you there.

#32 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2021-08-24 01:40 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

This pullout is turning out a LOT better than the mainstream media would have you believe, more than 50k lifted out so far as of last night, with as many as 10k more being lifted out each day. I will point to three things in my defense of President Biden:

1. This action was based on a surrender signed by Dotard, who then tried to further damage President Biden's efforts by refusing to brief the Biden team on what was happening and trying to remove ALL our troops before he left office.

2. For the hawks claiming that President Biden should have left the 2500 man force in place because it was maintaining the peace, the Taliban is patient, and over the past year while there has been no hostility, the Taliban has been making deals with local leaders and the Afghan military to lay down their arms, and they've been fortifying and now have around 70,000 fighters, probably more with the former Afghan military who have joined their ranks. That 2500 person US force would be swept up in a matter of minutes by the Taliban if they wanted to. They don't want to continue hostilities with us and can see us leaving soon so that 2500 person force was NOT keeping the peace, it was just a placeholder while we withdrew.

3. We find out now that white supremacist Stephen Miller and Dotard made sure the SIV program was as understaffed, underfunded, and dysfunctional as possible, meaning that SIV paperwork for our Afghan allies was slowed to a crawl. So four years of SIV requests, especially those of the past year when it became obvious that Dotard was surrendering to the Taliban were not being processed. On top of that, the State Department was hollowed out by Pompeo, Dotard, and Miller, and that's the agency that processes SIV paperwork. So, how exactly was the Biden Administration supposed to speed this process up?

Ultimately, President Biden has done what he campaigned on, promises made, promises kept. The initial departure was always going to be messy, but the Administration and the military have things under control, but you would never know that based on further hair on fire reporting in the MSM.

#33 | Posted by _Gunslinger_ at 2021-08-24 02:41 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Tony,

If this withdrawal turns out better than many fear will happen, will dems give Trump any credit?

#34 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2021-08-24 03:35 PM | Reply

will dems give Trump any credit?

#34 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON

For what?

#35 | Posted by Zed at 2021-08-24 03:42 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Zed,

"For what"

That's most going to be the reality of the situation.

For what?

#36 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2021-08-24 03:50 PM | Reply

Most likely...I meant

#37 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2021-08-24 03:50 PM | Reply

If this withdrawal turns out better than many fear will happen, will dems give Trump any credit?

#34 | Posted by BillJohnson

I'll give him credit - for negotiating our surrender then not having the balls to pull out himself.

He got credit for the ANNOUNCEMENT, but then pushed the bad optics of the actual surrender onto the next guy.

#38 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-24 03:55 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

will dems give Trump any credit?

#34 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON

Over Afghanistan? Where he 'negotiated' with the Taliban (not the Afghan govt.) and reached an agreement in February 2020 to draw down U.S. forces to 2500 troops by May 1st, but slashed Special Immigrant Visas to a trickle when tens of thousands who helped us there were stranded and should have been airlifted out and resettled long ago?

That Trump?

Na

#39 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2021-08-24 03:56 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I'll give him credit - for negotiating our surrender then not having the balls to pull out himself.

He got credit for the ANNOUNCEMENT, but then pushed the bad optics of the actual surrender onto the next guy.

#38 | Posted by SpeakSoftly

You nailed it

#40 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2021-08-24 04:07 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

If this withdrawal turns out better than many fear will happen, will dems give Trump any credit?
#34 | Posted by BillJohnson

If the withdrawal turns out better than the worst case scenarios Republicans are screaming into ever microphone available ...

... will Dems give Trump credit?

What exactly does he deserve credit for doing?

What is Trump doing to alleviate the disastrous withdrawal his administration negotiated?

Follow up question. Will anyone remember Afghanistan exists anymore come October?

Based on the average American attention span?

I doubt it.

#41 | Posted by ClownShack at 2021-08-24 04:53 PM | Reply

Bill,

Lawrence O'Donnell has been doing an extended comparison story about the final US withdrawal from Vietnam and our current evacuation from Afghanistan. I was a teenager when Vietnam ended and remember a lot of the details from memory. But one thing was absolutely certain: Neither Republicans or Democrats criticized each other or then President Ford for what was happening. The Democratic presidential nominee, Jimmy Carter, never made the chaotic withdrawal an issue for which he attacked Gerald Ford. Our entrance and exit from Vietnam happened under presidential administrations of both parties, and the shame of our loss there was felt unilaterally as an American tragedy, not one belonging to one party or politician or the other.

Contrast that to now. Trump is the one who championed the US withdrawal upon a timetable his team alone negotiated with the Taliban, leaving out the Afghan government altogether, effectively showing the Taliban that we had no faith in that government whatsoever. Biden decided to elongate the timetable but still follow through on the terms Trump negotiated. Trump never created any viable plans for actuating his hasty withdrawal, and left Biden with a hollowed out State Department, a hogtied SIV program, and a short timetable to overcome these obstacles as well as navigate a hostile domestic political atmosphere.

Sorry, I see precisely nothing to credit Trump with even if Biden manages to pull most of the bacon from the fire. As I see it, all Trump did was pull the plug and then he exited, leaving everything else to his successor. And now he criticizes said successor for following through on what Trump started himself? I repeat myself - I see nothing to give Trump credit for in this entire situation because nothing he's done is creditworthy in any positive sense.

#42 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-24 05:36 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

will dems give Trump any credit?
#34 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON

I'm not a dem, but Trump deserves the least amount of credit possible if only because of the incompetent and petty way he went about with the surrender and presidential administration transition.

Does he get credit, sure, but with a massive 'BUT!' that leads to the true context of why this seems to be as big of a debacle as it's turning out to be. Just like with the vaccine, Trump wants credit but refuses (and refused) to work for it. The bare minimum was all he could muster, hence all he deserves is the bare minimum of credit.

#43 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2021-08-24 06:50 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

...well that just sounds brilliant...

#44 | Posted by earthmuse at 2021-08-24 07:22 PM | Reply

Tony,

I'm no expert but my opinion is the Taliban are totally different from the Vietnamese.

This is such a different situation.

It's not just the threat of communism.

Now it's the threat of another 9/11.

These people mean business and hate America.

They feel justified and obligated due to their religious beliefs to kill us.

But now they have a "fair amount" of American technology to use against us.

Frankly....I am shocked this is happening.

Unbelievable this is happening.

Unbelievable there are people in denial how bad this is.

I can't say I really understand why Trump handled it the way he did.

But what would Trump have done with a 2nd term?

Not this I don't think.

#45 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2021-08-24 08:22 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Tony,

And we've yet to see how China is going to use this to their advantage.

Afghanistan has a lot of rare minerals and one of the biggest deposits of lithium used in batteries.

#46 | Posted by BillJohnson at 2021-08-24 08:26 PM | Reply

Oh Bill, did they really hate America when we helped them fight the godless Soviets? Can't blame them for a little sanctuary for Bin Laden and his al-Queda when they also helped. US troops stationed in Saudi country was an issue with Bin Laden not them.

Do they hate us now? Damn right they do and I can't blame them.

Heard an interpreter hoping to get out alive but he said " in all fairness I was helping to kill them for the last 20 years"

#47 | Posted by bruceaz at 2021-08-24 08:39 PM | Reply

"It's not just the threat of communism.
Now it's the threat of another 9/11."

Trump's leadership has led to over 200 9/11s and counting.

Why can't you see that?

#48 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-24 08:44 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

"I can't say I really understand why Trump handled it the way he did."

Sometimes I think you just might be the saddest man alive.

How'd you muster up the horse-sense to get vaccinated, while drinking every last drop of the Trump Kool-Aid?

#49 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-24 08:48 PM | Reply

"Hey, yeah we admit we had the training camps and gave quarter to the terrorists who attacked your country's biggest city and the Pentagon two months ago. But we didn't really expect they response you sent. So, hey, can we just let bygones be bygones? Please stop bombing us? We promise we'll be good little Talibans from now on. Promise."

signed,
The Taliban

And there are idiots who think they would actually surrender? Funny.

#50 | Posted by jakester at 2021-08-24 08:58 PM | Reply

I find it difficult to believe the Taliban had a clue to what Bin Laden was up to.

Because we didn't.
It wasn't the Taliban that taught those Saudi fcccers how to fly an airliner. We did that.

Hind sight is wonderful, ain't it.

#51 | Posted by bruceaz at 2021-08-24 09:20 PM | Reply

I'm no expert but my opinion is the Taliban are totally different from the Vietnamese.

Smh ... Complete obliviousness to the subject of your own question (which had nothing to do with the countries involved, only the similarity between the way we were forced to leave each country with our defeated military) about whether Trump deserves any credit.

Now it's the threat of another 9/11.
These people mean business and hate America.
They feel justified and obligated due to their religious beliefs to kill us.

Not likely. You seem to know very little about the Afghani people, especially those comprising the Taliban. OBL was a guest after having fought with the Afghanis to oust the Soviets. The Afghanis themselves aren't global jihadists, they just want to autonomously rule their own corner of the world inside their tribal borders. Afghanis feel fully and historically justified in killing invaders upon their own lands. They nor their culture are based on exporting war outside of their own internal defense.

Frankly....I am shocked this is happening.

Frankly, explain how you can imagine our exit going any differently. Now keep in mind that whenever the US announces it will be leaving, chaos will immediately begin because the central government cannot exist without the US military behind it. If the US starts pulling out troops and personnel without a formal announcement, the media will still report it and the world will know what is happening. And then what? Biden should lie about it in order to maybe keep people safe? Who'd believe him when transports are leaving with fleeing people every day?

So again, tell us how any withdrawal could have gone differently based on all the factors we know exist? How would our national media not play on the tragedy of giving up a 20 year war which we didn't win? I'm all ears to any plausible way we could have left Afghanistan and not caused a complete horrific situation. That too is the chief lesson of Vietnam - There are never good ways to leave a battlefield that will be taken over by your opponent. admitting your own defeat. And in leaving, all your allies will need to get out too, and it will be impossible to get all of them out. Physically impossible. Unfortunately, many of these people became forfeit the second we lost the war, iow, they've been walking dead unless the US committed to keeping troops there forever.

#52 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-24 09:26 PM | Reply

Well I finally looked up smh

My guess was 'so much hubris'

#53 | Posted by bruceaz at 2021-08-24 09:36 PM | Reply

Now it's the threat of another 9/11.

These people mean business and hate America.

#45 | Posted by BillJohnson

And they didn't 3 weeks ago?

There was no where else in the world from which they could have planned an attack? Our few thousand guys in afghanistan was preventing terrorists all over the world from planning another 9/11?

You're just being dramatic because you need to exaggerate the problem in hopes people will think this administration is anywhere near as incompetent as the last one.

#54 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2021-08-24 10:15 PM | Reply

These people mean business and hate America.
#45 | Posted by BillJohnson

The people who attacked us on 9/11 were Saudi. Curious if you believe Saudi Arabia deserves blame for 9/11.

#55 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2021-08-24 10:20 PM | Reply

"Now it's the threat of another 9/11. These people mean business and hate America."

FWIW...In the year I was over there I poured through hundreds of thousands of serialized intelligence reports. I can count on both hands the number of times I saw Al Qaeda mentioned.

I don't think the TB hate America. I don't think they really care. They just don't want outsiders there telling them how to live their lives.

To put the shoe on the other foot...what do you think the reaction would be if an invading force imposed Islamic law on the US. It might be the one thing that would finally unite all Americans in a concerted effort. Maybe that's what happened there.

#56 | Posted by madbomber at 2021-08-24 11:15 PM | Reply

I'm kind of late to the thread, but who says the pullout is going terribly, exactly? The same people that lied us into war, and were big cheerleaders for staying there indefinitely? Those people?

Because from where I'm standing, the pullout is going really well. Most certainly better than anything any Repubican could have pulled off, with ineptitude and incompetence being their GOOD qualities...

#57 | Posted by chuffy at 2021-08-24 11:22 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

#57

This, as always, the GOP jackals swing for the fences, hit a dribbler to the pitcher and claim to have hit a home run.

As ALWAYS.

As in EVERY TIME.

The problem is 30-40 percent of the fans in the stadium cheer the home run. At some point they just need some sense slapped into them. I mean just a good solid smack, not like I want to take them out back and shoot them or anything.

#58 | Posted by bocaink at 2021-08-25 05:47 AM | Reply

But what would Trump have done with a 2nd term?

#45 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON

I don't know, BILL. But with his third term he would have taken away your guns.

#59 | Posted by Zed at 2021-08-25 08:09 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Why is it the Cl0wn brigade wants us to believe that an obviously lousy policy will work out better if a Cl0wn is in charge?

I mean really?

The cl0wns took a surplus and turned it into an economic meltdown not seen since the Great Depression and started two wars we lost and indebting us to China forever.

sooooo much winnnnn-nnning?

#60 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2021-08-25 08:51 AM | Reply

Found this little truth bomb in the Comment section of the WaPo:

Trump and Pompeo:

- Signed surrender agreement in Doha Feb 2020, which included the release of 5,000 hardcare Taliban from prison, most of whom immediately took up arms again.

- Drew down US troops in AFG from 6,000 to 2,500 after signing the agreement, effectively giving the Taliban a green light to advance through the country.

- Did nothing between Feb 2020 and Jan 2021 to prepare for the withdrawal of US and allied personnel, nor facilitating the evacuation of AFG nationals that had assisted the US.

- Directed senior Pentagon leadership not to cooperate with the incoming Biden administration, which further complicated the AFG withdrawal strategy and planning.

And people are complaining that Biden hasn't managed the evacuation well!!! Really!

www.washingtonpost.com

Again Bill, what exactly does Trump deserve positive credit for based on what he actually did during the last 11 months of his administration after he signed the agreement?

#61 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-25 09:25 AM | Reply

"Directed senior Pentagon leadership not to cooperate with the incoming Biden administration, which further complicated the AFG withdrawal strategy and planning."

Biden should have been able to strategize and plan anyway! --BillJohnson

#62 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-25 09:33 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

But what would Trump have done with a 2nd term?

Put you in a camp for being gay?

#63 | Posted by Alexandrite at 2021-08-25 10:34 AM | Reply

I know it because I led the targeting effort for a year over there. If you know anyone else who did, have him or her come up on freq.

#25 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER

Remotely Bombing the ---- out of a culture does NOT make you an expert in any way on the culture you are trying to annihilate.

#64 | Posted by donnerboy at 2021-08-25 11:30 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

But what would Trump have done with a 2nd term?

Not this I don't think.

#45 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON AT 2021-08-24 08:22 PM | FLAG: | FUNNY: 1

There are plenty of articles exploring that nightmare situation.

This is from the Brookings Institute ... . www.brookings.edu

"Trump's first term has had a clear narrative arc. He systematically purges his government of those who stand up to him and replaces them with loyalists who indulge his whims and worldview. If he is still president on January 21, Trump will feel utterly vindicated by a second unlikely victory"thinking that only he is truly in touch with the American people."

"As John Bolton concludes in his book, Trump in a second term will be "far less constrained by politics than he was in a first term." He will be free to be himself"to pursue policies that benefit him personally by linking decisions to his business interests; by indulging his desire for ratings and drama; and by attacking people he does not like, such as Angela Merkel, and helping people he does, such as Kim Jong Un."

"Substantively, he will double down on his instincts, leaning into ideas he had before he became president. He could pull the plug on NATO entirely by refusing to defend Germany, France, and other selected countries under the mutual-defense clause. He could make this decision unilaterally, without authorization from Congress, as it simply entails altering a presidential interpretation of the purposefully vague NATO founding treaty."

"He's already tried to withdraw troops from South Korea in his first term. But he could make it happen in his second by entering into a peace treaty with North Korea. His first comments on foreign policy in the 1980s were criticisms of Japan, but earlier in his first term he modified his long-standing hostility because of his friendship with Shinzo Abe, which the then"prime minister carefully cultivated. Now, with Abe out of the picture, Trump could revert to Japan-bashing and questioning the alliance with Japan itself. Both of these steps could weaken U.S. competitiveness with China."

There is a lot more in the article if you are really interested in scaring yourself silly.

Basically Americans and the world would have been screwed. He would have finished his purge of government and secured the power of the Republican Party as the party of Trumpism.

America and the world were lucky to have dodged that bullet.

As for Afghanistan I am certain the bullets would flying again already.

#65 | Posted by donnerboy at 2021-08-25 11:47 AM | Reply

And there are idiots who think they would actually surrender? Funny.
#50 | POSTED BY JAKESTER

Sure buddy.

But that is not the actual surrender agreement that the Pompous peon Pompeo signed is it?

You should look it up. It's just as embarrassing.

It was more like "if you don't shoot at us any more we will leave".

#66 | Posted by donnerboy at 2021-08-25 12:33 PM | Reply

"It was more like "if you don't shoot at us any more we will leave"."

All told, I don't think that's such a bad deal.

If I'm not mistaken, the Taliban aren't trying to stop us. And we have been getting our people out, but also getting tens of thousands of Afghan people out of the country.

#67 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-25 12:45 PM | Reply

will dems give Trump any credit?

#34 | POSTED BY BILLJOHNSON

Do they mitigate his crimes? I don't see it.

When will Rtards hold Trumpy accountable for his criminal actions?

Then maybe I will credit him for his positive actions.

Trumpy is a criminal. I credit him with many crimes including inciting an insurrection at the US Capital on Jan 6th.

And when he takes responsibility for his actions there then maybe I will credit him with his "positive" actions. But because he is a criminal he needs to be held accountable for ALL his crimes before I give him any "credit" for any of the good things he may have done.

#68 | Posted by donnerboy at 2021-08-25 12:48 PM | Reply

But what would Trump have done with a 2nd term?

Since his reinstatement on August 13th, he hasn't done much.

Trump got his ass handed to him in 2020, and all the whiny snowflake "conservatives" can do is project their hypothetical dystopian ideals on us all. Although some liberals will engage you, it is apparent that not-liberals don't understand that you ALL sound like that crazy guy standing on a street corner with a megaphone and a sign with 1,000 words written on it shouting about aliens and Jesus and the End Times. All of you. It's because you have given megaphone guy the reins, thinking you're owning the libz.

I've given up hoping that there are any sane Repubicans left. There is simply no evidence to support it.

#69 | Posted by chuffy at 2021-08-25 02:13 PM | Reply

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