Everything old is new again.
— Dr. Nickarama (@nickaramaOG) August 15, 2021
Know what’s really gonna hurt, though? When some enterprising soul out there does some digging and establishes that the Kabul Chinook is the exact same damned one from the Saigon ’75 photo. Seeing as how the only hardware the “world’s strongest military” has that actually works as it’s supposed to is all fifty to seventy years old, that wouldn’t be any big surprise.
Ultimately, Antipresident Biden owns this embarrassing debacle lock, stock, and barrel—or his handlers do, rather. But let’s not be too quick to lay it ALL at his feet; as always, there’s plenty of blame to go around.
Doug Lute, a retired Army general who directed Afghan strategy at the NSC for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, told The New York Times that the puzzle for him “is the absence of contingency planning: If everyone knew we were headed for the exits, why did we not have a plan over the past two years for making this work?”
Big brass ones on this blame-shifting rumpswab, you gotta give him that much. Which would have to be Requirement One for the guy who directed Afghan strategy for No Such Agency, under not one but TWO (2) US presidents, to blandly declare himself mystified over the absence of contingency planning for a more dignified exit from the Graveyard of Empires. Now I’m certainly no expert, but it seems obvious enough that, as not only a high NSA mucky-muck and superspook but also a former US Army general, Lute might rightly be thought of as one of the folks officially responsible for the development of things like, ohhh, contingency plans, no? As in, that’s a critical part of your job description?
Additionally, it’s widely known that the US military has long made having a plan in place for EVERY imaginable contingency—including some pretty fanciful ones, at that—among its top priorities. Yet somehow—for a twenty-year quagmire which even not-particularly-attentive Americans could readily discern we were losing, the current “president” and his predecessor both having implicitly conceded defeat by announcing an imminent US disengagement and withdrawal—there was no planning done to prevent the anarchic, bloody rush for the exits we just witnessed.
As I said about Faux Jaux, though, so it is with this Lute loser: plenty of blame here to go around.
The US Embassy in Afghanistan spent more time planning for Pride Month than it did for the withdrawal. One unforced error after another. https://t.co/hgqN8PKIrR
— Ian Miles Cheong @ stillgray.substack.com (@stillgray) August 15, 2021
Steyn spreads the blame around even further, to some candidates richly deserving of their portion.
One of the depressing aspects of the Swamp is that everything becomes a racket – including even your armed forces. Look at that buffoon at top right, the guy who heads the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Thoroughly Modern Milley: that’s an awful lot of chest ribbonry for a nation that hasn’t won a war in three-quarters of a century. During his recent wokier-than-thou Congressional testimony on “white rage”, I wish someone would have asked Thoroughly Modern what they were all for:
Well, this is for Korea…Vietnam…This small ribbon’s for the Jimmy Carter helicopters-in-the-desert fiasco, because that went tits up far quicker than it usually takes…Here’s the Pentagon Female Empowerment Award I got for introducing Take Your Child Bride To Work Day to Jalalabad…This one’s from the Association of Non-Binary Staff Colleges for Most Transitions in a Single Battalion…Oh, and this most recent one is for getting into a Twitter spat over Tucker Carlson…
If you don’t have total contempt for Milley and the rest of the brass right now, you’re part of the problem.
I’m in favor of razing the Pentagon and salting the earth – or, at the very least, firing Milley and the massed ranks of “parade generals” (a useful Commonwealth term) and moving the few guys left to a new HQ in a strip-mall on the edge of Cleveland. The bigger your armed forces get, the more they become a racket – as the US-created “Afghan National Army” “300,000-strong” (and now down to, oh, twenty-seven maybe) has just conveniently demonstrated. As for where all the money wound up, the Taliban’s tour of American “ally” and former Afghan vice-president “Marshal” Dostum’s palatial spread provides a clue.
I’ve said for years, into the void of silence from Bill Kristol, Max Boot and the rest of the shock’n’awe crowd on the laughably misnamed “national-security right”, that the entire American way of war needs rethinking.
As for the enemy, the good news is that if your regime is attacked by America you’ll likely wind up with even more territory than you started with:
The Taliban now controls more of Afghanistan than it did before the US invaded in 2001.
That happens to be true: the only change effected over two decades of Nato occupation is that the Taliban now controls northern Afghanistan, which it didn’t do on October 7th 2001. But don’t worry; here’s how US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spent his Saturday night:
Very productive conversation with Canadian Foreign Minister @MarcGarneau about our efforts to reach a diplomatic solution in Afghanistan.
In the course of that “very productive” telephone call, the Taliban took three more cities.
America is not “too big to fail”: It’s failing by almost every metric right now. The world-record brokey-brokey-brokeness manifested by the current spending bills is only possible because the US dollar is the global currency. When that ends, we’re Weimar with smartphones.
Clearly, Chairman Xi and his allies occasionally muse on the best moment to yank the dollar out from under. If you were in Beijing watching telly today, would you perhaps be considering advancing those plans?
At this point, if they aren’t, then what the hell are they waiting for?