Fmr NATO Commander Stavridis on Afghanistan: ‘We Have Lost this Conflict’

Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Admiral James Stavridis on Wednesday sounded off on Afghanistan’s fall to the Taliban after the withdrawal of U.S. troops.

Stavridis said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that the United States has “lost this conflict” with Afghanistan. He emphasized the importance of not allowing Afghanistan to “become an ungoverned space.”

Well, as we say in north Florida, sometimes you have to know the difference between quitting and getting beat,” Stavridis stated. “And what I mean by that is we have got to recognize that in this case, we have lost this conflict. Great break, therefore, we need to be thinking ahead on what we do that’s in our interest. That’s why I was encouraged, extremely so, to see Ambassador Bill Burns — you know, look in a dictionary under diplomat, there’s his picture — go to negotiate with the Taliban. We need to think about how we can come in over the horizon if we need to. There are practical things we may need to continue to do militarily, intelligence gathering, all of those kinds of things, so Katty is correct to say getting these Afghan partners out is a part of salving the wounds of Afghan veterans.”

“Another big part is making sure that going forward, we ensure America’s safety,” he added. “We don’t allow this to become an ungoverned space. We don’t allow another 9/11, and we do that if we have to from over the horizon, we do with the combination of diplomacy, economic incentives, military if we need it. We’ve still got a big job ahead in Afghanistan, Willie. The game has changed. We have to change with it.”

Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.