Did Joe Biden LIE? He ignored army general's advice to retain troops in Afghanistan
A testimony from General Kenneth McKenzie, one of the US' top generals, suggested that Biden lied to the public in order to avoid accountability
While testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday, September 28, US Central Command Gen Kenneth McKenzie directly contradicted President Joe Biden's claim that no one advised him to retain about 2,500 US troops in Afghanistan.
The testimony from McKenzie, one of the nation's top generals, suggested that Biden lied to the public in order to avoid accountability. McKenzie's admission came after Oklahoma Sen Jim Inhofe (R), the ranking member on the committee, asked him if he agreed with Gen Scott Miller, the former commander of US forces in Afghanistan, that they recommended Biden to leave a few thousand troops in the war-torn country, according to the USA Today.
“I recommended that we maintain 2,500 troops in Afghanistan. And I also recommended earlier in the fall of 2020 that we will maintain 4,500. At that time, those are my personal views,” McKenzie told the committee. “I also have a view that the withdrawal of those forces would lead inevitably to the collapse of the Afghan military forces, and eventually the Afghan government,” he added.
When asked whether Biden heard the advice, McKenzie confirmed that the president was present during the discussions and that he "heard all the recommendations and listened to it very thoughtfully.”
Last month, Joe Biden claimed that no military leader advised him to leave a small troop presence in Afghanistan.— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) September 28, 2021
Today, General Milley and General McKenzie both confirmed their recommendation that 2,500 U.S. troops remain in Afghanistan.
Which is it? pic.twitter.com/3Tnw1a6V4q
Biden, during an interview with ABC News last month, tried to blame former President Donald Trump for the decision to pull US troops out of Afghanistan. However, anchor George Stephanopoulus interjected by saying, "but your top military advisors warned against withdrawing on this timeline. They wanted you to keep about 2,500 troops.” “No, they didn’t,” Biden retorted. “It was split. Tha– that wasn’t true. That wasn’t true.”
“They didn’t tell you that they wanted troops to stay?” Stephanopoulus asked to confirm. “No. Not at — not in terms of whether we were going to get out in a timeframe all troops. They didn’t argue against that,” the president maintained.
The ABC News anchor continued to prod Biden. “So no one told — your military advisors did not tell you, ‘No, we should just keep 2,500 troops. It’s been a stable situation for the last several years. We can do that. We can continue to do that?'” he asked. “No. No one said that to me that I can recall,” Biden responded.
Stephanopoulos to Biden in August: "Your military advisers...wanted you to keep about 2,500 troops."— Mediaite (@Mediaite) September 28, 2021
Biden: "No they didn't!"
Gen. McKenzie in September: "I recommended that we maintain 2,500 troops in Afghanistan."https://t.co/CqsLth8v9P pic.twitter.com/AC838u4JTU
This means either McKenzie lied under oath, or Biden struggled to recall advice he was being given by the nation's top military brass over a highly sensitive situation. McKenzie's claims were further corroborated by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, who testified that the recommendation had reached the president’s desk. “Their input was received by the president and considered by the president, for sure," he asserted.
The backlash against Biden was swift, with several public figures taking to social media to respond to the damning testimony. "President Biden said that no one warned him about the risks of his disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal. That was a lie," Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton declared.
“It’s abundantly clear: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris ignored the advice from the military and mislead the American people," Texas Senator Ted Cruz alleged. "Biden’s botched Afghan withdrawal could have been prevented and American lives could have been saved.” "Joe Biden handed over control of Afghanistan to the Taliban," Senator Marsha Blackburn tweeted.
"Isn’t this the same Joe Biden who tried to pin his botched Afghanistan withdrawal on President Trump?" filmmaker Errol Webber added. "Biden lying about ignoring advice he got from generals that ultimately led to the deaths of 13 Americans is far more impeachable than a Trump's phone call," writer Mark Hemingway chimed in.
"We all knew this but now we have it under oath: despite the Biden WH’s claims, top generals recommended against full withdrawal & warned Afg would rapidly collapse to the Taliban," political advisor Alyssa Farah wrote.
President Biden said that no one warned him about the risks of his disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal.— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) September 28, 2021
That was a lie.
It’s abundantly clear: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris ignored the advice from the military and mislead the American people.— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) September 28, 2021
Biden’s botched Afghan withdrawal could have been prevented and American lives could have been saved. https://t.co/wUCd3C0xt0
Joe Biden handed over control of Afghanistan to the Taliban.— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) September 29, 2021
Isn’t this this same Joe Biden who tried to pin his botched Afghanistan withdrawal on President Trump? pic.twitter.com/kGMbwVHTmn— Errol Webber (@ErrolWebber) September 29, 2021
Biden lying about ignoring advice he got from generals that ultimately led to the deaths of 13 Americans is far more impeachable than a Trump's phone call. https://t.co/0B4dP0Oc4U— Mark Hemingway (@Heminator) September 28, 2021
We all knew this but now we have it under oath: despite the Biden WH’s claims, top generals recommended against full withdrawal & warned Afg would rapidly collapse to the Taliban https://t.co/8nVUaPq9V6— Alyssa Farah (@Alyssafarah) September 28, 2021