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BREAKING: Biden Admin Was Warned of Afghanistan Collapse

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow
The Truth Network Radio
August 20, 2021 1:00 pm

BREAKING: Biden Admin Was Warned of Afghanistan Collapse

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow

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August 20, 2021 1:00 pm

In breaking news, we have learned that in July of this year, the Biden Administration was warned by a State Department memo about gains made by the Taliban in Afghanistan. They knew that Kabul would likely collapse, yet the Administration went forward with their bungled plan of U.S. military evacuation. Jordan and Logan Sekulow discuss the fallout of the chaos in Afghanistan as more information becomes known. This and more on today's Sekulow .

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Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow

Breaking news today on Sekulow. The Biden administration was warned of Afghanistan collapse back in July, specific to Kabul. We're joined by Rick Rinnell and Mike Pompeo. Keeping you informed and engaged.

Now more than ever, this is Sekulow. Wrapping off a tough week for the President was that confidential cable that Fox News confirmed. It was sent by State Department officials on the ground in Kabul to President Biden's Secretary of State Antony Blinken warning of a rapid, a possible rapid collapse of Kabul soon after the withdrawal date and offering mitigation methods and also recommendations for speedy evacuations. We want to hear from you.

Share and post your comments. Recall 1-800-684-3110. The cable was dated July 13th and it constitutes the clearest proof that the administration had been warned by its officials on the ground that the Afghan military may not be able to hold off the Taliban, creating some questions about whether the President even saw it. And now your host, Jordan Sekulow. Welcome to Sekulow. We're going to get into all of this today. We've got a great show for you because we're going to be joined in the first half hour by Rick Rinnell, our Senior Advisor, Foreign Policy and National Security.

Second half hour, Mike Pompeo. So you're going to get both of their reactions to what is going on in Afghanistan and a response as well to the idea that the potential finger pointing that we might see next week where this unfortunately could dissolve into partisan politics by saying, well, this was actually, you know, President Trump started the withdrawal process. But we're going to talk about that with both Rinnell and Pompeo because if you really look at what they were doing, they were beginning a process that had benchmarks, that had goals, had obligations that had to be met. That's very different than just saying let's throw all that out and just go.

And then the difference is with that you have something to judge it by. With this, it's complete chaos. Again, today on the broadcast, we'd love to hear from people who served in Afghanistan, your thoughts on this as well, your thoughts on President Biden blaming the Afghan military for kind of disappearing. And I know that there is some truth to that, that they kind of dissolved. But the more we've looked into, the truth is he inflated their numbers by double.

They were closer to about 130,000, 150,000. And they have been on the front lines of the battle the last 15 years. So the reason why U.S. casualties have gone down is because on the front lines have been Afghan soldiers. So they've been depleted, their military, while the Taliban was hiding out.

So again, there's a lot to talk about there. But the breaking news is that in July, July 13th, so with plenty of time to change plans before the withdrawal was made, before we got to this chaos, there was a State Department confidential dissent channel used that warned of rapid territorial gains by the Taliban and the subsequent collapse of the Afghan security forces. It also called on the State Department to use tougher language to describe the atrocities being committed by the Taliban. There were 23 U.S. embassy staffers, all American, signed onto this cable. And the cable, we do have recognition from the State Department that Secretary Blinken does review all of those cables. So the question is, did it get to Joe Biden or not?

And that is a main question. But Logan, this is huge news because now we know that the State Department, so the Biden administration, the political appointees knew from their embassy staff that they, that their plan was problematic. And it was specific to Kabul falling. This wasn't just about Afghanistan in general, it was specific to Kabul falling. Well, much like all of these stories that keep coming out, I'd say over the last six months, whether that is what's happening in Israel, what's happening now in Afghanistan, it is history repeating itself. You are seeing the same kind of stories as we did back with this. This has obviously shadows and shades of Fast and Furious, where people were told what was happening beforehand.

We were involved and somehow it didn't get to the right people and chaos ensued, even though our intelligence said this is what would happen. I'd love to hear from you. Does it feel the same to you as well?

Does it feel like history repeating itself? 1-800-684-3110. Thousands of you are watching right now online. I encourage you to share. If you're watching on Facebook, like. If you are watching, put the big thumbs up on YouTube. Make sure you subscribe, share, get this into as many feeds as possible.

It's breaking news. We are also filing a FOIA, so the ACLJ taking action on, we'll explain that more when we come back, on this State Department memo and more. Support the work of the ACLJ Matching Challenge Month of August, ACLJ.org.

We'll be right back. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. Whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy, and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

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Take part in our Matching Challenge today. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. Only when a society can agree that the most vulnerable and voiceless deserve to be protected is there any hope for that culture to survive. And that's exactly what you are saying when you stand with the American Center for Law and Justice to defend the right to life. We've created a free, powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn.

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Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. I want you to put everything into context, too. 1-800-684-3110, if you want to weigh in on this, if you've served in the military, especially if you are a veteran of the Afghanistan conflict. But that we have this administration over and over again saying, you know, Kabul was going to be safe. All were the indications were that Kabul was not going to fall.

So, yes, these other territories, Northwest and different parts of Afghanistan, maybe the situation there gets more chaotic, but not where our embassy is, not where our people are, not where the media is headquartered, not where the majority of Westerners are hanging out. And George Stephanopoulos last night, now there's some criticism ABC News is getting because they did some editing. Now, listen, I don't think they edited to make Biden look better because his responses were horrendous on their own.

But if you actually look at the transcript, there were times when he was just rambling. They cut that out. But here's one that they didn't cut out and they did play about the takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban directly, by 2019. You didn't put a timeline out when you said it was highly unlikely. You just said flat out it's highly unlikely the Taliban would take over.

Yeah. Well, the question was whether or not the idea that the Taliban would take over was premised on the notion that somehow the 300,000 troops we had trained and equipped was going to just collapse, they were going to give up. I don't think anybody anticipated that. Except for your own State Department in July that warned you specifically that they warned of a rapid territorial gain by the Taliban and the subsequent collapse of the Afghan security forces. So both the fall of Kabul, the fall of Afghanistan, and the collapse of the security forces, the military that he is talking about, President Biden is talking about this 300,000 number, his administration was told more than a month ago that they are going to crumble by the people who are actually on the ground in Afghanistan. We know, based on the State Department's report, that at least Secretary Blinken reads these memos that come through.

We don't know if he took it to the President or not. But you would think that the Secretary of State would not be having the President make statements this broad saying, well, no one thought that this military was going to collapse. Except for your experts, your people on the ground. Like Logan said, with the fast and furious, with Benghazi, the people on the ground are being ignored once again. Instead of utilizing their information to your advantage, which is why you have them on the ground, if you're ignoring them for your political purposes, well, then you get the chaos that we have seen since Sunday. So I want everyone to understand, we are following a FOIA. The ACLJ is going to take action on this, a Freedom of Information Act request, one on this new report that there was this memo that went to the State Department warning that the Taliban would, that Kabul would fall to the Taliban shortly after the U.S. military withdrawal, that it would be chaotic. But second to our FOIA, now this is interesting, and I'm going to talk about it with former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The Trump administration created under the State Department a Contingency and Crisis Response Bureau, the CCR.

Well, that was abolished by the Biden administration. What time would you need more a Contingency and Crisis Response Bureau than a time when you have 10,000 to 40,000 Americans stranded in Afghanistan? By the way, the last eight hours, the last report out of the news that's still on the ground, and we're going to see less and less imagery on the ground. We might see it from people using their social media, but most of the news outlets, including print, are pulling their people out of the ground. CNN is still there, and their last report was that there has not been a single flight out in the last eight hours by the United States.

Right now, there's even been more, probably nine hours plus. That is something that I think we're going to have to look into. The concern is you start having these major media outlets looking, understandably, leaving. It's a dangerous situation and no upside. It's not like they're in a wartime where they're there covering what's going on. Sure, we're covering what's going on, but it becomes unsafe for their own people and not even, again, like a wartime kind of press correspondent.

You have that actually in CNN. You have someone there, so you've got to give them props for having someone still there because this quickly could leave the news cycle, and we all just forget, and that is maybe even more dangerous to forget what's happening there. Well, I think that there's a thought by the Biden team that with the mask and COVID and the spread of COVID and people trying to get back to some kind of normal as back to school begins, that this issue, as bad as it is, will somehow be forgotten.

Here's where I think that that runs into a problem, though. So many thousands of Americans fought in Afghanistan, and their families remember that. Their lives were lost in Afghanistan or that they came back. Their lives were lost in Afghanistan.

Their vision was lost to fight for this. They're not going to forget. Their families aren't going to forget. We're not going to allow it to be forgotten either at the ACLJ. We're going to continue on this, but I think that what has to be, again, just underscored is that we now know that with all the information and all this talk about, oh, we had no idea, we had no idea whatsoever that this would happen, that they were warned a month ago by their officials at the embassy in Kabul that if you do this, we believe that Kabul will fall and that the Afghan military will be dispersed.

It will no longer exist. So that, again, is very serious that that information is there. I think this just came out, and I think this is pretty interesting. Secretary Blinken just tweeted this. You can hear a little bit of a follow-up. He put, I spoke yesterday with the deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs about Afghanistan and Qatar's generous support to safely transit U.S. citizens to the embassy in Kabul personnel, and at risk Afghans through Doha.

We command Qatar for its efforts to promote regional security. And then this came out. Clarissa Ward from CNN, again, probably one of the last people on the ground. You've got to give her props. She just tweeted, soldiers by the runway at the Kabul airport tell me there are 10,000 people here processed and ready to go, but nowhere to fly them because Qatar is refusing to accept more Afghans because they've reached capacity.

It's abysmal. Someone needs to step up. So within his tweet, she already responded that this was done. She essentially said that it's not happening.

That was done already. They took in what they could. It's a small country. They can't take in, I mean, this is not a country that can take in a million people. And there are plenty of governors who have, in the States, who have said, hey, send your refugees here.

And whether you like that or not, it's something that I feel like I understand the United States feels like we need to do it because there are people who are really suffering. And look, in the next segment, we're going to have Rick Grenell on. Later in the show, we're going to have Mike Pompeo on.

I think they should probably address some of these issues too when it comes to, when you're speaking out of both sides of your mouth. You have someone like Secretary Blinken putting out a statement that's very definitive. And then you have Clarissa Ward on the ground in Afghanistan from CNN saying not so fast. And I've got to give, again, say, give props to, honestly, all the networks. This is the first time in a very long time that it feels like there is at least a hint of being- Journalists. Being journalists and unbiased. You know, they're still definitely biased. There's still definitely blame being pointed. But more than I've ever seen in the last six years, you actually see criticism of their own party and their own people.

And that's pretty wild to see. We know that Congress is going to be looking into this next week. Nancy Pelosi's talked about four different congressional hearings. I think, listen, it's an opportunity to be bipartisan because every one of those districts, you've got people who have fought and served in Afghanistan. At the same time, we know how quickly things devolve into partisan politics on Capitol Hill.

You don't want it to become a distraction. But there are a lot of questions that need to be answered by this administration now. Joe Biden, I don't think, is helping by any of the interviews he's done. We don't know where Vice President Harris is.

A lot of people are asking that on YouTube and on Facebook. Where is she? She says she's the last person in the room and these decisions are made. I'm not sure her or Joe Biden are the last first people in the room. Joe Biden doesn't talk with the authority of being the last guy in the room who is saying, okay, here's what the call is.

He's constantly kind of wavering. And I think that because of that, you get a sense, too, that are we going to be back in a crisis? Because now we're sending troops back to secure an airport that the Taliban can outnumber very quickly.

And they've got better equipment now because they have our vehicles, our weaponry, our night vision goggles. And instead of following what President Trump said, which is either getting that out or destroying it, you know, just destroy it, they've left it. They left in place the ports.

They left in place these structures that we put in place to be there. I'm not someone who is a proponent of endless war in Afghanistan. I supported the idea of a withdrawal.

But I think that we talked about yesterday the idea of what a withdrawal is. If you look at where the U.S. has been successful over the years, decades and militarily, we never left. When you look at where the U.S., it's questionable what happened, we left. So when we left Vietnam, we got the images of the helicopters on top of the embassy trying to get people out. Left Afghanistan, same thing goes. Why, though, did we see difference in Korea, where we've kept our military, Germany, where we've kept our military. So even when you say it's over, we don't usually do these mass withdrawals.

They don't usually end well. Usually you keep enough people. And what they thought in Afghanistan, 2,500 troops, a very small number of U.S. troops, could be there, not have to be in harm's way all of the time because you'd have the Afghan forces on the front line. And the Taliban wouldn't be in control. They were saying they were going to be mostly guarding the embassy. And they're still saying that somewhat, which we know the embassy has essentially been abandoned. There is no U.S. embassy in Kabul right now. There's a building that was the U.S. embassy, but no, they're not there. They moved the embassy to the airport.

It's not funny, but I will say this. What did you expect from the people that brought you Fast and Furious and Benghazi and the Iranian nuclear deal? These were people who thought you could trust the Iranians with a nuclear deal. Same guy, Jake Sullivan. He's the top advisor to the President on this. Top advisor. And he has faith in the Ayatollahs, so he thinks, of course, hey, the Taliban, yes, they'll give us safe haven.

They have a worldview that is not realistic about these individuals. Now, we're going to be joined by Rick Rinnell in the next segment of the broadcast. Second half hour, Mike Pompeo will be joining us. We're going to get into all these issues, dive into the State Department memo, dive into what's happening on the ground in Afghanistan and how this could have been done differently. Support the work of the ACLJ. Remember, we're filing a FOIA on this at ACLJ.org. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, play on parenthood's role in the abortion industry and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life. Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. Whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

For that, we are grateful. Now there's an opportunity for you to help in a unique way. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's Matching Challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

A $50 gift becomes $100. This is a critical time for the ACLJ. The work we do simply would not occur without your generous support. Take part in our Matching Challenge today. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family.

Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. Welcome back to Secchia. We are joined by our Senior Advisor for Foreign Policy and National Security, Rick Rinnell. To get down into the weeds more on what we are finding out about Afghanistan, Rick, I want to go right to this new report in the Wall Street Journal about the State Department and 23 members of the U.S. Embassy staff in Afghanistan and Kabul, a warning about three things July 13th, the collapse of Afghanistan to the Taliban, the collapse of the Afghan military, and the collapse of specifically Kabul. They signed this, dated it, and we have heard from the State Department that Secretary Blinken takes those seriously, has read it. We don't know if it got to the President, but that the people on the ground, the assets we had on the ground, were warning the Biden team that this was exactly what we were seeing play out was going to happen. Jordan, as you know, I spent more than 10 years at the State Department. I know a lot of Foreign Service officers, and over the last couple of days, I've been speaking to a lot of Foreign Service officers.

Here's what we know. In early June, the Foreign Service officers started to warn their superiors that they believed Afghanistan was in real trouble, that the Taliban was taking over. Fast forward to July 1st, and the Biden administration closed Bagram Air Base, removing our troops. Now, remember, this is one thing that the Biden team fails to mention every single time they talk about the 2,500 U.S. troops. There were also 5,000 NATO troops. That's the deal that President Trump made, is to make the international community do more in Afghanistan. So we had 2,500, they had 5,000 NATO troops there. On July 1st, we closed the Bagram Air Base. Troops were removed, but Foreign Service officers and other Americans in Afghanistan were staying.

Now, that's a recipe for disaster. When you remove the military from a conflict zone, which you leave behind the State Department and other Americans, it boiled over to the point on July 13th, 22 of the 23 people who work in the economic and political sections at Embassy Kabul signed a descent cable, which is a very rare thing. They went out of the chain and said, we are not being heard, we are in dire straits, we are in danger.

Now, that was July 13th. Fast forward, the political teams in Washington at the White House, the NSC, and at the State Department and at the Pentagon ignored these warnings for two months, and the disaster unfolded. They should have been listening, they should have been listening to State Department officials and intelligence officials.

This wouldn't have happened. Rick, there's a lot going on in terms of the way the media is also portraying this. You've actually seen, I've told Jordan, there's some props you can give to some of the outlets that maybe we haven't given props to for the last six years for actually being a little more aggressive to the Biden administration. But you also had Secretary Blinken yesterday, or just tweeted, actually not yesterday, just tweeted that he spoke to the Deputy Prime Minister of Foreign Affairs for Afghanistan and Qatar, and they were going to help get them out and get the United States and also Afghani refugees to Qatar. Immediately, CNN responds and says, that's not happening here on the ground. There's 10,000 people waiting to get on planes, and they're saying no.

For someone like you who's been the experience you have, is that just a breakdown in public relations, or is that a concentrated effort, do you think, to say, hey, get this out there so then we know the majority of people will see this and not that? So we can kind of spin it both ways. It's a great question, and I think the fundamental answer is we have a bunch of people at the State Department, political appointees, who have been hired, who are NGO-type activists. They are not America First people. Look no further than the plane load, a C-17 packed with people coming out of Afghanistan. Those weren't Americans.

Those were a whole bunch of other people. Now, I'm all for looking through applications to figure out who's in danger, who helped us. We have very clear rules that you can come out of Afghanistan as an immigrant, a special immigrant visa, if you can prove that you actually helped the Americans for a year.

We have standards. The State Department has instructions from Congress that they have to uphold. But that plane, that C-17, should have been loaded with thousands of Americans first. We need to remove the Americans. You don't remove the troops and leave American Foreign Service officers, American State Department employees, and Americans in Afghanistan in a conflict zone.

You do that. You remove those people first, and the last thing you do, as President Trump says, is you bring out the troops. Let me just finish quickly by saying, President Trump talked to the Taliban.

So did Joe Biden's team. There's one difference. The Taliban heard a very different message from the Trump administration. Don't make a move. Don't go forward.

Don't try to take over cities. But what clearly the Taliban didn't hear is Biden's demands. I think that's something that's really interesting, Rick, and we talked about when you were on the show earlier in the week, is the demands and what would actually be the rules and regulations of getting out and doing these deals. One of them was maybe some of the destruction of weaponry, and we talked about that with Mike Pompeo as well.

This just came out just about an hour ago. The Taliban has been showing off pictures using – we had the photo, I believe, if you're watching on social media – the Taliban shows off captured U.S. weapons, so putting pictures of themselves holding these United States weapons. They've replaced the AK-47s, Rick, with taxpayer-funded machine guns and assault weapons. That is a bigger question, and I know we've only got two minutes here.

This is a huge question. But we're now sending troops back in to try and secure an airport. With the amount of Americans, we're told it's somewhere between 10,000 and 40,000, a huge number there, a big difference, that are all around Afghanistan. With these foreign service officers, too, who are supposed to be operating, they're like at an airport now, I think. But they still talk about the U.S. embassy there. This is, to me, I mean, it's bigger than Benghazi in the sense of the scale of what we've done in Afghanistan, the sacrifice there. But we're also not out of the woods of those kind of incidents occurring either when we are putting out messages to, well, hey, the Taliban's promised safe passage to people to the airport.

I mean, that came out from the U.S. government. Look, the French and the British are out there collecting their citizens. They're not relying on the Taliban. I've already heard from people inside Afghanistan who are faced with multiple checkpoints. The Taliban controls everything around the airport. This is not a one simple checkpoint where you just show your ID and you get through. Not only is there Taliban checkpoints, but Americans and NATO forces had checkpoints, and that's difficult to get through. The Americans don't always believe the paperwork that's being presented.

So it's not an easy thing. And for John Kirby at the Pentagon to just completely act like get to the airport and then we'll help you is outrageous. This never should have happened. On the weapons question very quickly, I'll just say, as Donald Trump was very clear, you bring the weapons home, you bring all of our equipment home.

If you can't bring it home, then you disable it and destroy it so they don't get to use it. And that was not done here. I mean, that was clearly not done here. They're showing it off. Rick, as always, we appreciate your insight. We know we'll have you back next week to get in further.

We hope that things improve, but we also deal in reality here. Folks, we're filing that FOIA to get to the bottom of where this memo went at the State Department. We believe it was read by Secretary Blinken based on the State Department remarks. The question is, did he ever brief President Biden, who can't remember his briefings regardless when he's sitting down in these interviews? No, no, no.

Actually, I just don't recall if I was told that. Be right back. Second half hour. Mike Pompeo joining us. PAC Show today.

We'll be right back. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's Matching Challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20. A $50 gift becomes $100. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family.

Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. I'm talking about freedom. I'm talking about freedom.

We will fight for the right to live in freedom. Keeping you informed and engaged. Now more than ever, this is Sekulow. And now your host, Jordan Sekulow.

So we now know, I just want to reset the stage. And that was great with Rick Grenell. I mean, there's so much information he's able to share from people on the ground, what this is actually like, what the Trump administration was planning to do, how this would have been differently. And also, just reiterating that we, part of this withdrawal was not to, and there was speech out of the UK last night. Can we pull those remarks from a member of parliament in the UK who served in Afghanistan, who talked about how, this scares me as an American, they no longer want to be reliant on the United States.

They say, too many times we've been burned. We have our people there. We have NATO.

Why are we saying that? Because the US withdraws, chaos ensues. Now, some of that's because US military, even compared to all the NATO combined, can't even compare it. But second, what Rick said, there were double the amount of NATO troops than there were US troops.

Why weren't they better utilized and coordinated? Because, as we'll play for you that this happened in the House of Commons, this speech, it was remarkable. It was talking basically about, and not in a way that they were happy about, but the fall of the United States as a world leader. I mean, that is very troubling, but when you have a President who is, at best, just doesn't remember, and at worst, is a lifetime politician who's lying to you. And Joe Biden is somewhere in the middle there now. He's definitely a lifelong politician who's used to telling lies, but he also seems like he's losing it.

Take a listen to this Byte 30, when we now know that there was a cable that it was very unique, so it would have stood out. So Rick said, this is not something that happens often, that said, hey, Kabul's going to fall. This was about a month before the withdrawal. Kabul will fall, the Afghan military will not be able to defend the country. They will disappear, and the entire country will fall, ultimately. We are not safe. And as Rick said, for some reason, which I don't know if it's been reported yet, the military left, but we left all these American diplomats, people like in Libya, who could not defend themselves. Who were there with the military to defend them so that they could do their job.

But take a listen to Joe Biden. The top military advisors weren't against withdrawing on this timeline. They wanted you to keep about 2,500 troops. No, they didn't.

It was split. That wasn't true. That wasn't true. They didn't tell you that they wanted troops to stay? No, not in terms of whether we were going to get out in a time frame all troops. They didn't argue against that. So no one told your military advisor to not tell you, no, we should just keep 2,500 troops. It's been a stable situation for the last several years. We can do that.

We can continue to do that. No, no one said that to me that I can recall. He's so definitive, Logan. No, there was a split, but that's untrue. That's the word that you look for right there. Well, there was a split.

It means there's people advising you and people not advising you. That's fine. Say that. Say there was a split, but then he had to double down at the end and say, no, no, not that I can recall.

And then he clears himself that he can't remember. My biggest issue with all of this too, and we're going to talk to Mike Pompeo about it as well, but is one, of course, on the ground. The losses, the American blood that was shed in Afghanistan, and again, you start asking the question for what purposes. Now, if you kept 2,500 troops there who were relatively safe because they were kind of directing the Afghan forces and you could keep your air base, then I think you could still say the war is over. I mean, World War II is over. We still have a massive base in Germany. Yeah, we've been there.

We celebrated the Fourth of July there, and it's like mini America. Yeah, I mean, so what would be the problem with that? Maybe you could work out something with NATO where you even withdraw down to a lower number, but you keep, why keep, you were making America look weak in the world states. That is where I think the bigger geopolitical issue here, if you get outside of the moment in Afghanistan, is that the world is saying, you know what, like in Vietnam, this is another opportunity. It's kind of chaotic in the U.S. There's been a lot of protesting in the U.S.

There's been a lot of uncertainty about elections. In the U.S. there's been, you know, you've got COVID, a pandemic, and now another Vietnam part too. So they seize on these moments. So the Chinese, what do they do? And the Russians? They're ready to recognize the Taliban as the official government of Afghanistan. And by the way, they'll go in and be able to work easily in Afghanistan. You know why? They have no morals.

They do not care how the women are treated or how people are treated in the streets or if girls can go to school or not. We'll be right back on Secular. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad, whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress. The ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

For that we are grateful. Now there's an opportunity for you to help in a unique way. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's Matching Challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

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Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. Welcome back to Sec Hill. We are joined now by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Secretary Pompeo, who is the Senior Counsel for Global Affairs of the ACLJ. I know you've joined our team earlier this week.

I'm back on now in the studio. And I want to ask you now about this Wall Street Journal report that the Biden administration, the whole week so far, they were saying, well, no one told us about Kabul falling. None of the experts on our team, no one on the ground there warned us that Kabul would fall. Yeah, maybe other places and maybe the Afghan military is not going to be perfect, but no one warned us of all this. Now we know that on July 13th, there was a memo put together by 23 U.S. embassy staffers, all Americans, on July 13th, sent through a special State Department program called the Confidential Dissent Channel that said all of that, that said that Afghanistan would fall to the Taliban, that the Afghan military would fall apart, and that Kabul would fall.

And we also have heard from the State Department that Secretary Blinken, who holds your former office, does review these because they are rare. So the only question is whether it got to Joe Biden or not, but it certainly got to the top of this administration. So they were being warned, Secretary Pompeo, by the people on the ground. Why do you think they ignored them? Well, Jordan, it is almost certainly the case that that dissent cable got to Secretary Blinken. It is almost certainly the case it got to so many. And I am confident that there were others, I'm sure, on the military side as well that told them the exact same thing.

I can tell you that because we were concerned about this as well. We knew that we had to get the conditions right before we executed on the plan to get our final set of soldiers out there. We had to get the equipment out. We had to get the civilians out.

We had to do all of those things. And so it's unsurprising to me today that they got warned the fact that President Biden had said nobody told us, I thought was deeply inconsistent with it. I knew senior leaders inside the U.S. government believed about making sure we had the conditions right before the withdrawal was completed.

Well, there's been a lot of talk too. Was it the Trump administration where you were serving? Yes, you were having these meetings.

Yes, there were obligations. I want you to have that opportunity, though, for our audience because there's so much going on right now with Afghanistan. Just to tell people the difference between how the Trump administration was planning this versus what the Biden administration did with this kind of just full-on withdrawal without the precondition set. To me, it reminds me of how they go about dealing with Iran, how they go about dealing back in the day in Libya. It's just crisis after crisis instead of following kind of checkpoints. Jordan, we had a methodical approach to this. You can see it, right? You don't have to guess.

We don't have to speculate. You can see how we managed this for four years. You can see that we drew down our forces. And each time we evaluated the conditions on the ground, we made sure that we accomplished the twin missions that the President set out for us.

The first one being to make sure we get our boys and girls home just as quickly as we can. The President was determined to do that, but second, to make sure that we did it in an orderly way that prevented ungoverned space and created the opportunity for a risk reduction to make sure that something like this never happened again. It's unimaginable to me that they pulled the military out before the civilians.

It's unimaginable to me they left this much equipment. They hadn't thought this through with our allies and partners. We were determined. When I met with the Taliban, we were clear.

You violate the agreement, you will pay. Multiple times in the course of our time and service, they did that. They pushed on checkpoints. They did things that were inconsistent with what they had promised they would do. It didn't surprise us. We didn't trust them.

These are evil butchers. When they did that, we responded. We imposed real costs on them when we began to develop this deterrence model. It's the deterrence model that permitted us to go from 15,000 American soldiers to about 2,500 and keep things stable. That's an Afghan stable, right?

Keeps a lid on this thing, all the while going from 15,000 to 2,500. It is only when President Biden lifted the deterrence model, when the Taliban pushed on America under President Biden, America retreated. And when you retreat in the face of an adversary, Jordan, you get exactly what you're seeing today.

You get an American retreat, you get an America without leadership, and you get enormous credibility lost from the United States of America. You know, Congress, Secretary Pompeo, they're talking about holding hearings next week. I think that there is an opportunity, kind of like we've seen in the media to some extent, that these could be more fair and bipartisan. But I'm also always concerned when Congress right now is so partisan, so hyper-partisan, that it will devolve into finger-pointing. Which is why I wanted you to comment on that directly. Because I think there are those who say, well, what about Trump? Wasn't it the Trump administration that started this at your meetings with these members of the Taliban?

But as you said, these are butchers. And you hold them to a line, you tell them what it is, you say here are the consequences. But we do know also the consequences to the U.S. globally. You've got a new piece up at ACLJ.org where you call it a disgrace. That this withdrawal has been a disgrace. I see China and Russia rushing back in, even Russia rushing back in to Afghanistan, ready to welcome the Taliban and the atrocities that come with the Taliban. Because they don't have that moral viewpoint that the U.S. does. But to use the language like a disgrace, this didn't have to happen this way, did it?

Jordan, this is the thing. I use that word very intentionally. Because this has implications that go far beyond Afghanistan. It is certainly disgraceful that we didn't do right by those folks that we made promises to. Not only our partners and allies, but the people who served alongside our soldiers there on the ground. That is disgraceful.

It's inconsistent with how Americans roll. But second, I can promise you that leaders around the world, some of whom I've had the chance to talk to over this last week, are deeply concerned about the other commitments that President Biden might be willing to walk away with. With no notice, with no strategy, with no theory of the case.

These are the kind of things that are just so utterly incomprehensible. And credibility, Jordan, you know this, it takes a long time to build back. I hope America will start doing that today. I hope President Biden will demonstrate to the Taiwanese, to the Ukrainians, to the Cuban people who are simply demanding freedom that America will stand with those who are our friends and allies and not walk away with them when times get just a little bit tough. Well, because we've already seen out of the UK, members of parliament there, one who served in Afghanistan with speeches about questioning whether or not they should be so reliant on the United States when a move like this is made. When there is NATO and there are NATO forces there, and yet the US makes a unilateral move like this and kind of leaves them in place. We know these countries are doing what they can to get their people to safe places.

I want to ask you about that. We're told that there's a number, it's a very broad number, somewhere between 10,000 and 40,000 Americans in Afghanistan. We know somewhere there's NGO work they may not want to leave, they may be willing to risk it, that's okay, but there's a huge amount of people that need to be removed that were not removed. So what are the chances that we see actually more violence and conflict because we've got to put troops back in to go get those Americans out?

The two ironies there, Jordan. First, the Biden administration has now had to triple the number of forces that we had in our administration on the ground. And with triple the number of the forces, they have chaos. With a third of those forces, we had relative stability and certainly safety for Americans. This demonstrates that we had the right end of the stick with understanding how you deter threats against America. Second, the irony that you now see our European partners so upset, I have to just take a moment and say I remember their horror at President Trump and me. I remember when we were trying to build NATO to be in a stronger fighting force, we left NATO better off. It's not this administration that punched a hole in our NATO alliance and our friendships with NATO that is going to have to be rebuilt, that I'm counting on America to do that. But the irony of it was President Trump that was going to destroy these important security institutions and President Biden now in just seven months has destroyed them, shouldn't be lost on anyone. Yeah, I mean the speeches that are being made, again, you would think that this was, you saw the outrage under President Trump, a lot of criticism of you and President Trump and anybody who supported looking at the world in a new way. But yet, again, I mean some of it is like when you have the Jake Sullivan types as National Security Advisor, did the Iranian nuclear deal, think you can make deals with the Ayatollah and without really any checkpoints and without any kind of real surveillance of their program and they're not letting you into certain sites. These are the same people who are advising on this issue. The question is, can this ship, is there still time to right this ship when it comes to Afghanistan and when it comes to securing the Americans who are still there?

Jordan, I pray that there is. A couple things. The President is going to give some remarks here in just a little bit if I understand it right. Here's what he could do. He could make clear, not only does America have the capacity to get every American out, we're going to do it. We'll take whatever time it takes. If it takes weeks, great.

If it takes several months, so be it. We're going to deliver American security and we're going to get them out. We'll use whatever tools we need to do. Tell the Taliban, we're going to begin imposing costs on you immediately until we deliver against this important American objective. Second, he should lay out for the American people today a plan. How is it we're going to secure America from threats from Afghanistan as we move forward in the coming weeks and months and years? How is it that we make sure that we're now 20 years on from 9-11? How is it we make sure that we never see another day like that come from that place again? And then finally, he should tell the American people that he's going to get accountability for what happened.

This was a cataclysmic failure. People need to be held accountable. And I hope President Biden will make clear that he intends to do that. Thank you, Secretary Pompeo. There is a great new piece up by you on our website, aclj.org.

You'll see it's labeled Pompeo and it's the Biden administration's withdrawal from Afghanistan is a disgrace. You can read that, share that as well. You also can find great content from Secretary Pompeo for the last few months.

We put up new blogs, new pieces every couple days. You can find that and so much more at aclj.org. I suggest you all go and take a look at the content. It's absolutely free but also support the work of the ACLJ.

That's by visiting aclj.org. Click the donate button. Right now we're in a matching challenge so all donations are effectively doubled.

We'll be right back. We've created a free, powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn. It's called Mission Life. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, Planned Parenthood's role in the abortion industry, and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life. Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at aclj.org slash gift. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. Whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy, and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

For that, we are grateful. Now there's an opportunity for you to help in a unique way. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's Matching Challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

A $50 gift becomes $100. This is a critical time for the ACLJ. The work we do simply would not occur without your generous support. Take part in our Matching Challenge today. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at aclj.org.

Let me just take a moment, too. We were just, in this broadcast today, joined by two members of our team who I can't think of anybody who could shed more light on all of the things that are being reported right now because of the central role of the State Department, the central role of the intelligence community. So to have Rick Rinnell and Mike Pompeo on the ACLJ team for so many of these issues and when these crises and chaos develop to get their insight. How can things change? What could be different about this? What is the truth about what the Trump administration was planning to do in Afghanistan?

How is that different from what the Biden administration has done in Afghanistan? We're able to bring that all to you. It's because of your financial support of the ACLJ.

We have a Matching Challenge this month of August. You double the impact of your donation at aclj.org. We grow our team with people like Mike Pompeo and Rick Rinnell. There's a lot of people behind the scenes, too, that join the team as well so we can best utilize all of those resources that you don't see on the screen or don't hear on the radio broadcast. But it's because of you that during a pandemic, during this time of kind of chaotic time in our country, to say the least, and the world, that we've been able to grow as an organization. And we've not just been able to maintain, but to grow and to bring on these experts to the ACLJ. So I always want to remind you of that, but also thank you.

That's why we're able to have these team members who are not just guests, but are part of the ACLJ team. Now, I talked about this with Secretary Pompeo. It touched me deeply when I heard it, because to hear a member of parliament from the United Kingdom who fought alongside the United States and our NATO allies, and his friends, many who lost their life fighting in Afghanistan specifically, he delivered remarks in parliament yesterday. Take a listen, and how troubling this is about the United States as well. When the world was saying, well, this America first stuff, that was that, and Secretary Pompeo talked about that. Oh, that's so horrible, that's the worst.

But there were no problems. The world was places like Afghanistan, as I like how Secretary Pompeo said it was Afghanistan calm. But take a listen to now how a member of parliament who's also the chair of their foreign affairs select committee, this is Tom Tugendhat from the UK, who is also a veteran of the Afghan war. Now this is a harsh lesson for all of us. And if we're not careful, it could be a very, very difficult lesson for our allies. But it doesn't need to be. We can set out a vision, clearly articulated, for reinvigorating our European NATO partners to make sure that we are not dependent on a single ally on the decision of a single leader.

Think about, we know who they're talking about there, Logan. This is the UK. This is very unusual, because he is not the minority party there, he's the majority party there.

He's role as a foreign affairs select committee chair, a veteran who's fought alongside the United States. But when he says we don't want to be relied on a single country or single leader, it is the United States he's talking about. I think the UK has even recently come to grips with the fact that they aren't the superpower they once were. And they have to rely on people like the United States. They're not a giant country. And their power has certainly shrunk over the years.

Now their influence is still massive, it's one of the big powerhouses of the world. But still, they're saying, specifically, on camera, making these statements, we can't just be reliant on the United States. And a lot of that is because of the mishandling of the current situation in Afghanistan. Something that, again, is heartbreaking for all of us here.

But when blame is being pointed, it's just a mess. Yeah, and he went on further to talk about how this was not something he wanted to have to do. Remember I talked about those Afghan forces earlier in the broadcast, how the Biden administration tried to blame them and the Afghan government? The truth is, though, they have taken the brunt of the casualties the last 15 or 20 years we've been in Afghanistan. They were the front lines. So he talks about working alongside the 82nd Airborne for the United States and those Afghan special forces.

Take a listen by 48. And so it is with great sadness that I now criticise one of them, because I was never prouder than when I was decorated by the 82nd Airborne after the capture of Musa Kala. It was a huge privilege, a huge privilege to be recognised by such an extraordinary unit in combat. To see their commander in chief call into question the courage of men I fought with, to claim that they ran, it's shameful.

Those who have never fought for the colours they fly should be careful about criticizing those who have. When you talk about the geopolitical consequences and the devastating nature this can have on the United States, why would we trust this team to get involved with Iran? Why would we trust them to start any conflict? I mean, if you're an American abroad and something happened to you, would you trust Tony Blinken and Admiral Kirby, who can't keep himself out of the US government, had to come back to keep lying to the American people? Would you trust them to get you home?

I don't think so. Look, I think when you look at this from an international point of view, I mean that is a damning statement that's coming from the UK. I have really close friends there in the UK and they told me that in the last, they weren't exactly thrilled with Trump either.

They spent many years criticizing, they showed, you know, they had the parades and the anti-Trump rallies. But apparently the way the news is covering, not unlike here, and I've said that and I've given the props, is it's gone from, well, this person, they don't feel was fit to do the job, but they also felt was a caricature to then this is a massive mistake that not only affects America and it affects pop culture, if you will. This affects their own troops and their own allies and man, that is tough to hear as someone who obviously supports our country and supports the United States of America to hear members of the parliament making those statements. Yeah, and how the world could shift away. I mean so quickly, the world can make, also kind of has a role in deciding whether or not you're the superpower for good. We have the superpowers for bad in China and in the kind of, in lesser Russia, who are rushing back into Afghanistan, rushing back into Afghanistan. And I just want to make it clear here that while right now we're reacting to on the ground and we'll see what President Biden has to say after our broadcast is over, but that's a lot of on the ground reaction.

What we aren't doing yet is thinking about, but I think we're starting to, how bad this is for America and American leadership. It is one thing when they are afraid of you, and I think they were under the Trump administration, even some of our allies, they were afraid. Fear is different than no longer trusting, no longer being able to rely on the United States. And it doesn't mean you have to agree all the time with your allies, but you work together. I mean Secretary Pompeo talked about the NATO forces that were there utilizing those NATO forces more.

It appears that they would be willing to have done that, and that we didn't have to live through what we have seen. But it is the United States that made this decision. It is the United States government that made this call. And it will have an impact.

It doesn't matter who you voted for or who you think won an election. It will have an impact on the United States. Now, can we right the ship? Of course we know we can.

It has been done before. During Vietnam, casualties were much higher. The kind of tone on the ground in America was more chaotic. But we were not as connected globally.

So there was still not that connection. We did right the ship though. We remained the world's superpower. The question is, after this debacle, if you get another three years of these guys and gals, I guess, if Vice President Harris is around, if we are going to see from President Biden, what will America be like at that point? Not if they get re-elected to a second term, just the end of this term. Look at the mistakes. It doesn't matter what side of the aisle you are on anymore. You can call this out for what it is. A massive, massive, chaotic mistake by the United States putting our status in the world at risk. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-14 07:45:14 / 2023-09-14 08:09:00 / 24

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