One year ago today, Kabul fell to the Taliban after the Biden administration decided to make an expedited withdrawal from Afghanistan after decades of occupation.
U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Saks) joined House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and U.S. Reps. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Mike Turner (R-Ohio), and James Comer (R-Ky.) in commemorating the occasion in an op-ed posted on Fox News.
The op-ed criticized the Biden administration "for failing to take accountability for their botched Afghanistan withdrawal and demanded answers for the American people."
"House Republicans will hold the Biden administration accountable on behalf of the American people," they wrote. "And we will honor the sacrifices made by so many American families during the 20-year conflict in Afghanistan."
They accused the Biden administration of misleading Americans.
"The Biden administration spent the past 12 months misleading the American people to avoid accountability for its failed withdrawal in Afghanistan," the piece said. "The administration has stonewalled congressional requests for information and continues to deny the American public, and especially Afghanistan war veterans, much-needed answers on how the withdrawal unraveled into unmitigated chaos, and ultimately caused a reemergence of al-Qaeda in the heart of Afghanistan. This is a failure of leadership and an abdication of the responsibilities of the commander-in-chief.
"The administration refuses to provide Congress with sufficient answers to why officials misled Congress and the American people on the dire situation in Afghanistan in the months leading up to, and during, the withdrawal, and why the Administration took so few steps to evacuate Americans and key Afghan allies leading up to the Taliban takeover," the Republicans wrote. "The Biden administration also owes answers on why certain decisions were made, such as outsourcing the security of Kabul to the Taliban at the expense of Americans' safety."
After Kabul fell to the Taliban, U.S. forces continued to hold the airport as American civilians and Afghans who worked for the deposed elected government or the allies sought to flee the country. This mission continued through August 28, when a terrorist bomb killed 13 American service men and women. These 13 were the last Americans killed in Afghanistan.
According to the Department of Defense, 2,401 United States servicemen were killed in the war in Afghanistan. Critics of the rushed evacuation argue that the American civilians and Afghans who worked closely with the United States and its allies were left behind enemy lines and that Afghan women who were promised Western-style liberties like education and equal rights were left to the Taliban. They also argue that only 94 Americans were lost in the last seven years of the Afghanistan mission and that a small force of 10,000-15,000 troops with airpower could have kept the Afghan government propped up indefinitely. They also argue that without an ally in Afghanistan, the nation will once again become a haven for terrorists – why the Afghanistan War began in the first place. Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri was recently killed by the CIA as he was living comfortably in one of the most prestigious neighborhoods in Kabul, which seems to validate those fears.
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