Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) blasted President Joe Biden on Monday for his response to the chaos in Afghanistan after the Taliban seized the country while the 78-year-old was on vacation at Camp David.
“Just as President Biden has failed our country on COVID [Chinese coronavirus], at the border and economically — he has failed in Afghanistan. Since he was on vacation, I don’t know if he even noticed. We did,” Gaetz said in a statement.
While the Florida Republican said Biden’s decision to withdraw was “correct,” he noted the strategy and tactics were both “horrific and incompetent.”
“The fundamental error was ever believing that the Afghan ‘government’ and ‘military’ would ever fight for or win anything. They fled the country with whatever they could steal at the first whiff of the Taliban,” Gaetz said.
“It wasn’t exactly Valley Forge, Concord or Lexington. They were thugs and thieves, not patriots,” he continued, criticizing the Biden administration for believing in what he described as the “legitimacy of an illegitimate Afghan Government.” Because of that mistaken belief, Gaetz continued, “the right precautions were not taken to ensure that military equipment, paid for by the U.S. Taxpayer, did not fall into the hands of the Taliban or Iran.”
“Sadly, that’s exactly what happened,” he said, sharing an interview of a Taliban spokesperson boasting that some of the Afghan forces the U.S. invested in joined the jihadist organization and delivered U.S. weapons:
Fools put US credibility on the line for the likes of Afghanistan.
It is not a country. Never was.
The BIG LIE was that more US blood & treasure could have ever made a difference.
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) August 15, 2021
Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who has prioritized Critical Race Theory, was “made a fool,” Gaetz continued.
“Days ago he was crowing about the additional work the U.S. would be doing in Afghanistan to protect the airport and embassy. More funding and support for the Afghan Security Forces was his recommendation,” he said, calling for Biden to fire Milley “today.”
Twenty years toiling in Afghanistan has been a mistaken exercise in American nation building. We should learn this lesson. We should cherish and love our country enough to appreciate that the Cheney-istas cannot replicate it in Central Asian caves with any amount of American treasure or blood.
I will be leading the fight in Congress to put America First in all we do. We must build the strongest military in the world — capable of winning any battle and vanquishing any foe. We must commit to use it sparingly, only when in the direct national interest of our countrymen, not to settle disputes with barbaric tribes oceans away.
Biden has not said much on the crisis, seemingly dismissing the crumbling state of affairs last week as cities continued to fall to the Taliban.
“Afghan leaders have to come together. We lost thousands — lost to death and injury — thousands of American personnel. They’ve got to fight for themselves, fight for their nation,” Biden told reporters last week.
Biden has since cut his vacation short and will return to the White House at 1 p.m. Eastern. He is expected to deliver remarks on the crisis at 3:45 p.m.