A Phone Call With A Foreign Leader

Reuters reports the transcript of Joe Xiden’s  23 July phone call with Afghan President Ghani contains the following—

Biden: Mr. President, Joe Biden.

Ghani: Of course, Mr. President, such a pleasure to hear your voice.

Biden: You know, I am a moment late. But I mean it sincerely. Hey look, I want to make it clear that I am not a military man any more than you are, but I have been meeting with our Pentagon folks, and our national security people, as you have with yours and ours, and as you know and I need not tell you the perception around the world and in parts of Afghanistan, I believe, is that things aren’t going well in terms of the fight against the Taliban. And there’s a need, whether it’s true or not, there is a need to project a different picture.

Wow! It’s a good thing he didn’t ask Ghani to do something such as conducting an investigation. That would have been an impeachable high crime or misdemeanor.

Everything Is Proceeding As I Have Foreseen

I wish I were wrong, but I’m not.

I understand the frustration of the actual warriors feel because of the incompetence of the the generals and admirals who are supposed to be leading them. I turned down a promotion to major and left the Army Reserve rather than continue to serve under Carter’s Pentagon crowd.

I foresee that Carter’s second term was much too optimistic an expectation for the Xiden Administration. Let’s pray that we can still avoid the likes of Buchanan’s second term.

Non-Stranded Non-Hostages

White House press flack Jen Psaki has admitted that it is likely that there will be American citizens still stranded in Afghanistan after 31 August. Indeed, given the current progress in the evacuations, there will probably be thousands of Americans who want out and who can’t get out by 1 September.

There were only 52 American hostages trapped in Tehran in 1979/80.

You know that thing about Carter’s second term being the best case scenario. It was clearly too optimistic.

Afghanistan’s Future

I’m seeing posts around the Interwebz saying the Taliban will drag Afghanistan back to the 15th century. I believe that it’s more likely the country will wind up stuck in one of the uglier corners of the 21st.

Badakhshan Province sits along the ancient Silk Road and shares a border with China. I expect that China will begin an economic invasion within a few weeks or months. So far, the Chinese have modeled their economic imperialism less on the Europeans and more on the Ferengi, but I expect that Afghans’ unwillingness to be dominated by outsiders will cause the Chinese to be sucked into the same black hole that devoured British, Russian, and American resources over the past couple of centuries. (Note: The last successful conqueror of Afghanistan was Genghis Khan.)

Stay tuned.

I Blame Bush

There is no question Joe Xiden owns the catastrophic nature of our exit from Afghanistan. He can’t dodge that. However, the failure of the entire enterprise was predetermined years ago by George W. Bush when he failed either to limit the mission to a brief punitive expedition (as against Mexican bandits in 1916) or to conduct a successful war of total destruction of the enemy (as against Germany and Japan in WW2).

What is essential in war is victory, not prolonged operations.

—Sun Tzu

Double Plus Untrue

Yesterday, two sources one would normally associate with support for the Deep State delivered news that exposed lying by government agencies. First, WaPo published an extensive article based on a lessons learned report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction that contain details about how multiple government agencies had misrepresented the “progress” in the Afghan War to the American public. Then, another report was publicly issued Department of Justice IG which detailed lies told by the FBI to deceive the FISA court to issue surveillance warrants against Carter Page and other malfeasance associated with the Russia Collusion Hoax.

You know, it’s almost enough to make one think that the swamp really does need draining and that some (or all) of the dangerous reptiles be dealt with.

BREAKING: WaPo Discovers the Government Lies

WaPo has published a long piece on one of the Lessons Learned reports of the Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (aka SIGAR). The article is based on documents received after a three-year long legal battle over a Freedom of Information Act request that is still ongoing.

A confidential trove of government documents obtained by The Washington Post reveals that senior U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable.

The documents were generated by a federal project examining the root failures of the longest armed conflict in U.S. history. They include more than 2,000 pages of previously unpublished notes of interviews with people who played a direct role in the war, from generals and diplomats to aid workers and Afghan officials.

The government initially refused to release the unclassified report, claiming the the persons interviewed were whistleblowers. That was patently false because those interviewed did not come forward voluntarily but were approached by SIGAR. Also, some agencies, including the State Department, the DoD, and DEA, have classified parts of the report after the fact.

Read the whole thing and check out the linked documents.

Meanwhile, over at Instapundit, Mark Tapscott suggest that

Trump will say it proves him right about getting out of Afghanistan, and, more importantly, about why the Washington Establishment cannot be trusted. That this gift comes to Trump from the Post is the icing on the political cake.

Perhaps. Stay tuned.

Close Enough for Government Work

Stacy McCain has a post up discussing President Trump’s recent decision to increase the size of the U. S. Military force in Afghanistan. Our policy in the conduct of the war has been inconsistent over three administrations, but it now appears that Trump has ordered Secretary Mattis to win the war. Assets are being recommitted to the fight.

My libertarian friends and “America First” nationalists don’t like Trump’s decision to double the force in Afghanistan, but there are no good options available in this permanent war against a permanent enemy.

Read the whole thing and hit Stacy’s tip jar.

I’m Not Making This Up, You Know

WaPo reports that the White House has blown the cover of the CIA top officer in Afghanistan.

The CIA’s top officer in Kabul was exposed Saturday by the White House when his name was inadvertently included on a list provided to news organizations of senior U.S. officials participating in President Obama’s surprise visit with U.S. troops.

The White House recognized the mistake and quickly issued a revised list that did not include the individual, who had been identified on the initial release as the “Chief of Station” in Kabul, a designation used by the CIA for its highest-ranking spy in a country.

Just wait until this bunch is in charge of your healthcare.

Oh …

Those Naughty Marines

People are justifiably offended by the behavior of the Marines shown urinating on dead Taliban in a video posted on the Internet. One of the things that separates our civilization from the Taliban’s barbarism is our universal respect for the dignity of all human beings–even Taliban thugs.

OTOH, let’s not go overboard with apologies, and let’s not put up with lectures on civility from barbarians. Those Marines screwed up. They should suffer the consequences. And our civilization should move on.

Michael Ledeen has a good essay on this mess. He concludes that the Secretary of Defense should:

1. Treat it as a routine matter. “Boys will be boys. Especially in war. Stuff happens. We enforce our rules.”

2. Don’t pass judgment, even hypothetically. Just say, it’s been referred to the investigators. When we find out what happened, we’ll get back to you.

3. If Karzai delivers more moral lectures, have the president of the United States give a speech about Afghan sexual culture, including the treatment of young boys by older men, and the treatment of women by all Afghan men. And then suggest, ever so sweetly, that Karzai is not really in a strong position to lecture us.

UPDATE–More comments here.

UPDATE 2—Rep. Allen West (LTC, U. S. Army, Ret.) offers the following:

All these over-emotional pundits and armchair quarterbacks need to chill. Does anyone remember the two Soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division who were beheaded and gutted in Iraq?

The Marines were wrong. Give them a maximum punishment under field grade level Article 15 (non-judicial punishment), place a General Officer level letter of reprimand in their personnel file, and have them in full dress uniform stand before their Battalion, each personally apologize to God, Country, and Corps videotaped and conclude by singing the full US Marine Corps Hymn without a teleprompter.

As for everyone else, unless you have been shot at by the Taliban, shut your mouth, war is hell.

Tina Korbe adds this

The situation has never called for histrionics, but it has always called for a sober recognition that the reality of war is unfathomable to those who’ve never experienced it …

I’ll simply add from my own experience that Gen. Sherman and LTC West are correct: War is Hell. As George Orwell said, we will sleep safely tonight because rough men are willing to do violence on our behalf.