Former US intelligence colleagues are angry and deeply worried at what has happened in Afghanistan. Here’s what I’m hearing, and why there’s nearly universal belief that America and the world are in for one of the most dangerous, unpredictable times in modern history.
Afghanistan has shown the world — enemies & allies alike — that our military & intel assets are largely irrelevant because we can’t deploy them successfully. The blame lays at the feet of multiple Presidents. The Generals. The Spies. The Congress.
America’s Elites are trash. China knows it. They will become emboldened, covertly & overtly. War over Taiwan and contested islands in the S. China Sea and E. China Sea is now more likely. Russia will consider similar covert & overt moves, focused on Crimea, & former Soviet satellites. The fear is that China & Russia will act in concert.
Why? America was whipped by a tiny rebel force and couldn’t even retreat properly. Meanwhile, the American people are angry, COVID weary, & divided. If there were ever a time to push American hegemony aside, this is it. If Cold War III grows hot, America will need to quickly build up & work with foreign counterparts. But who will trust America after Afghanistan? Who believes we have the leadership to use our military might well? Who will trust us when we say “We Will Stand With You”?
Nobody with half a lick of sense, on every one of those questions. Including me.
Beyond China/Russia, others will take gambles too. Terror orgs like al-Qa’ida & ISIS are degraded but not dead. Their ideology is very much alive. Iran’s Hizballah — with terror cells throughout the US — may see an opening to create chaos too.
Meanwhile, the disaster inside Afghanistan is only just beginning. The Taliban will launch a terror campaign against American collaborators. The pictures will shock the conscience of the world, further degrading American moral authority. Biden & Co will struggle to respond.
There’s also the nightmare of tactical weaponry now awash in Afghanistan, in the hands of the Taliban and — soon — on the global black market. These arms will fuel chaos around the world for decades. The Pentagon has no idea where this stuff is and no plans to destroy it.
Finally, if Afghani refugees pour into the US, there are profound implications for security, culture, the economy, & politics. Are they properly vetted? Do they hold Western/tolerant values re: women, gays? Do they bring skills/education? Which party will they support?
More questions for which sentient beings already have the answers: no, RUFKM, HELL no, and three guesses, DUH. Expect to see much more splodeydopery, head-choppery, and sidewalk-murder-trucks driven into crowds up close and personal-like all across the too-feckless-to-bother-saving-itself Woke West, as the victorious Taliban expands its power and reach to put all those new war-toys abandoned by the fleeing Uncle Sam to best use.
The existential problem is that America needs good leadership to right its ship but there is none. Our federal bench is weak. Biden is a corrupt old man. Impeachment is a long shot; VP Harris is an unpopular paperweight. The Legislature is a feckless cabal of empty suits. Leadership could come from a state Governor, it’s true, but not soon enough. The above threats by China, Russia, & Co will metastasize well before the 2024 elections, and even a heroic new President will need years to clean things up.
Hate to be the one to hip ya, buddy, but the problem is even more existential than you may realize. NO President—however heroic, over whatever span of time he’s given—can or will clean this up. The mess is simply too big, the rot too deep, the national fabric too tattered and torn. This Augean stable is beyond hope of restoration; even the mighty Hercules himself would only throw up his hands in despair and just walk away from the job, shaking his head and muttering under his breath about what a total dick that damned King Eurystheus was for assigning it to him in the first place. Which, as it turned out in the end, he really was a dick. Anyhoo.
Again, our enemies and allies know this. Upshot: There is fear and outrage streaming through former intel officers over the Afghanistan debacle. America is rudderless. And the world now knows it. Grave dangers lie ahead, some predictable, others unimaginable.
‘Fraid so. The closing plea to “vote for change” is risible and pathetic, of course, in enforced accord with Beck’s First Law of TINVOWOOT™. But the rest is pretty much spot on, I’d say. Makes one wonder, since Wright is identified as a “former CIA ops officer,” whether there might not actually be a few white hats in the US spook community after all. Or might have been in the past, shall we say.