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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Five years ago, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) went viral during a presidential primary debate for his seemingly endless repetition of the phrase, “and let’s dispel once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing.”
Looking back, it seems as though that comment may have been better suited for who was then his second-in-command.
It seems as though it is all too easy for those on the right to consistently write off President Joe Biden’s policy failures as mere consequences of throwing an inept, nigh-octogenarian dotard into the Oval Office — which, in their defense, is true.
However, what we’ve seen over the course of the past week lends itself to more than mere ineptitude — instead, it’s the end result of a series of deliberate decisions made by an administration guided from the start by a wing of the Democratic Party whose foreign policy convictions are skewed beyond parody.
Democrats, particularly progressive Democrats, hold American military power in contempt, often characterizing our presence in places like Afghanistan as so-called “endless wars” being conducted for profit. Then, through their own false sense of moral righteousness in believing so, they base their policy decisions on this backward notion once they’re in power.
What we’ve seen in Afghanistan just happens to be the most egregious example of this in recent years.
On Friday, Biden floated the idea of the U.S. recognizing the Taliban should they measure up to a set of extremely arbitrary human rights standards. Reuters reports:
[Biden] promised to work with other countries to set “harsh conditions” for any cooperation or recognition of the Taliban, based on their human rights record.
“They’re looking to gain some legitimacy, they’re going to have to figure out how they’re going to retain that country,” he said. “And there’s going to be some harsh conditions, strong conditions we’re going to apply that will depend on … how well they treat women and girls, how they treat their citizens.”
Surely, the Taliban, being the world-renowned champions of human rights that they are, will be capable of adhering to whatever standards a decrepit, incoherent Biden decides they should.
Furthermore, the entire pretense for American presence in Afghanistan was to destabilize the Taliban and combat the possibility of a return to Taliban control — now, we’re discussing whether a Taliban-controlled Afghan state should be recognized as legitimate, so long as the Taliban play by the rules set out for them by the same people whose ineptitude handed them that control in the first place.
This is indicative of abject failure.
Meanwhile, earlier this week, The New York Times reported that Biden and his confidants greatly downplayed the threat of the Taliban successfully usurping control of the Afghan government despite knowing full well the potential gravity of the situation.
The president’s top generals, including Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley, urged Mr. Biden to keep a force of about 2,500 troops, the size he inherited, while seeking a peace agreement between warring Afghan factions, to help maintain stability. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, who previously served as a military commander in the region, said a full withdrawal wouldn’t provide any insurance against instability.
In a series of meetings leading up to his decision, military and intelligence officials told Mr. Biden that security was deteriorating in Afghanistan, and they expressed concerns both about the capabilities of the Afghan military and the Taliban’s likely ability to take over major Afghan cities.
This, of course, runs in stark contrast to what the likes of Biden and Milley had said publicly in the weeks leading up to the collapse of Kabul.
This is what happens when rhetoric dictates America’s presence on the world stage — and now, Americans and Afghans alike have to bear the ensuing consequences.
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