Afghanistan Debacle:  Where Are The Resignations?

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In any healthy, well-functioning democracy, when things go terribly wrong, heads roll.

Not literally, of course. People resign. The military leaders and government officials honorably take the responsibility for the disaster and resign. And if they don’t resign, they are fired.

Some examples of this pattern in American history:  Following Pickett’s disastrous charge on the last day of the Battle of Gettysburg in July 1863, when the Confederate Army was trounced on the final day of the most important battle of the Civil War, General Robert E. Lee resigned. In a letter to Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederate government, Lee did the honorable thing:  He took responsibility for the South’s crushing defeat at Gettysburg and resigned as commander of the Army of Northern Virginia. (Davis wisely refused to accept it.)

The night before the D-Day assault on the beaches of Normandy in June 1944, General Dwight D. Eisenhower wrote two notes:  one was a message of encouragement to the 160,000 men about the undertake the invasion of France. The second was a letter of resignation. It read as follows:  “Our landings in the Cherbourg-Havre area have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available. The troops, the air, and the Navy did all that Bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.” As it happens, the invasion succeeded – but Ike was prepared to do the proper thing if it had failed.

These were great men. They understood the consequences of defeat. And what was honorable in the face of defeat.

Where are the letters of resignation in this appalling disaster in Afghanistan? Have you seen one yet? Why hasn’t General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, resigned? Busy studying up on how to mainstream Critical Race Theory in the military, he presided over the worst debacle in American military history in decades. He should already be awaiting his first pension check.

How about Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, a retired general, who was more worried about climate change than the Taliban?  Or Army Secretary Christine Wormuth, the first woman to hold the job, who spent much of her confirmation hearing in May talking about cybersecurity and who said China “has tried to be helpful over the years” concerning Afghanistan. Why hasn’t either of them resigned or been replaced?

And why hasn’t the director of the National Security Agency, General Paul Nakasone, resigned?  Talk about a failure of intelligence! Didn’t anyone understand that if you set a date when you tell the enemy that you are going to leave (and, by the way, remove all air power), a catastrophe will ensue?

We would call for President Joe Biden to resign or be impeached … but to leave Vice President Kamala Harris as our Commander-in-Chief would be an execrable swap.

This diplomatic and military ineptitude in Afghanistan is a national humiliation that will have negative foreign policy consequences for years. It will also result in the deaths of many of our friends and allies in Afghanistan who fought with us and depended on us, and will now be executed by the Taliban. They appear to have little chance to escape the country – unlike the tens of thousands the United States helped to leave Vietnam in 1975.

Poll after poll reveals that Americans have a scandalous knowledge of American history. But here is a primer of the worst American foreign policy events in the past fifty years:  the fall of Saigon in 1975, the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in 1979, the assassination of the U.S. ambassador in Afghanistan in 1979, the sacking of the U.S. embassy in Benghazi in 2012 along with the deaths of four U.S. state department and U.S. military personnel (including the U.S. ambassador to Libya); and the fall of Afghanistan. What is the common denominator?

Every one of these tragic events occurred with the Democrats in power. (The fall of Saigon, occurred when President Gerald Ford, a Republican, was in office, but the Democratic-controlled Congress had effectively cut off all military aid to the South Vietnamese government.)

The Democrats mantra is:  Walk softly and carry no stick. And weakness emboldens enemies.

The U.S. military did not experience one death in a military encounter in Afghanistan in the previous 18 months. It was clear that the Trump administration had a plan to withdraw U.S. troops and Afghan civilians in a careful and phased manner which would not lead to the precipitous fall of the Afghan government.

The Biden administration has showed the world how weak and feckless a Biden administration is. It will cause our allies to think twice about relying on America.

When our country acts shamefully, who will take responsibility for the incompetence and dishonor? Who will take responsibility for the meltdown in Afghanistan? Are there are any honorable men and women in leadership positions in the Biden administration?

Where are the resignations?


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