A newly revealed State Department memo has explosive news
During his interview with George Stephanopoulos, Biden reiterated his July 8 claim that he had no idea the Taliban would move so quickly. However, according to a Wall Street Journal article, the administration has known for over a month about the speed with which the Taliban were moving. There was time to get people out safely.
On July 2, the American military abandoned Bagram Airfield, the most important base of operations still in Afghanistan. They didn't inform the Afghans, and the State Department made no effort to get Americans and their allies out of Afghanistan before the military left.
Six days later, Biden gave his boastful July 8 Afghanistan press conference, which will go down in infamy in the annals of American history:
Q Is a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan now inevitable?
THE PRESIDENT: No, it is not.
THE PRESIDENT: Because you — the Afghan troops have 300,000 well-equipped — as well-equipped as any army in the world — and an air force against something like 75,000 Taliban. It is not inevitable.
Q Mr. President, some Vietnamese veterans see echoes of their experience in this withdrawal in Afghanistan. Do you see any parallels between this withdrawal and what happened in Vietnam, with some people feeling —
THE PRESIDENT: None whatsoever. Zero. What you had is — you had entire brigades breaking through the gates of our embassy — six, if I'm not mistaken.
The Taliban is not the south — the North Vietnamese army. They're not — they're not remotely comparable in terms of capability. There's going to be no circumstance where you see people being lifted off the roof of a embassy in the — of the United States from Afghanistan. It is not at all comparable.
Just this past Wednesday, the first thing Biden did during his interview with ABC's George Stephanopoulos was say he had no idea that the Taliban would move so fast:
STEPHANOPOULOS: Let's get right to it. Back in July, you said a Taliban takeover was highly unlikely. Was the intelligence wrong, or did you downplay it?
BIDEN: I think — there was no consensus. If you go back and look at the intelligence reports, they said that it's more likely to be sometime by the end of the year. The idea that the tal — and then it goes further on, even as late as August. I think you're gonna see — the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and others speaking about this later today.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Senator McConnell said it was predictable that the Taliban was gonna take over.
BIDEN: Well, by the end of the year, I said that's that was — that was a real possibility. But no one said it was gonna take over then when it was bein' asked.
That's a coherent narrative from one month to the next — but it's a lie. The Wall Street Journal reports that, on July 13, twenty-three American staffers in the U.S. Embassy sent a classified cable warning that the Taliban were making rapid inroads:
The cable, sent via the State Department's confidential dissent channel, warned of rapid territorial gains by the Taliban and the subsequent collapse of Afghan security forces, and offered recommendations on ways to mitigate the crisis and speed up an evacuation, the two people said.
The signatories of the dissent channel cable urged the State Department to begin registering and collecting personal data in advance for all Afghans who qualify for Special Immigrant Visas, aimed at those who worked as translators or interpreters; locally employed embassy staff; and for those eligible for other U.S. refugee programs while there was still six weeks left before the withdrawal deadline.
It also urged the administration to begin evacuation flights no later than Aug. 1, the people said.
Secretary of state Blinken reviewed the cable. One day later, the White House announced that it had a program to evacuate eligible Afghans who had supported the U.S. along with their families, but it took another month for the program to start.
Showing either a breakdown in communication between the State Department and the Pentagon or that Gen. Mark Milley is a liar, on Wednesday, Milley stated, "There was nothing that I, or anyone else, saw that indicated a collapse of this army and this government in 11 days."
What we're left with is the fact that the Biden administration (although maybe not the military) knew that people needed to be evacuated ASAP — and instead made slow and minimal efforts to respond to that information. Trump's team had left a plan for just such exigencies, but the administration had trashed it in June.
It's hard to tell what we're looking at here, although the choices are all bad. Is it Biden's dementia? His and his administration's gross incompetence? Or are we seeing the level of evil Lara Logan suggested when she said America still has the power to put a stop to what's happening?
Image: Biden's August 16 Afghanistan statement (cropped). YouTube screen grab.
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