America’s top general said that the United States could face an increase in terrorist threats from a Taliban-run Afghanistan. The warning arrives as US intelligence agencies responsible for anticipating those threats face new questions after the US-backed Afghan military collapsed with shocking speed.
On Sunday,not even a week after a military assessment concluded that Kabul could be surrounded by insurgents in 30 days, the world witnessed shocking scenes of Taliban fighters standing in the Afghan president’s office and crowds of Afghans and foreigners frantically trying to board planes to escape the country.
On Sunday, General Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, took some time away from learning about white rage and systemic racism to take a look at some things that are actually part of his job and eventually briefed US senators during a call that US officials are expected to alter their earlier assessments about the pace of terrorist groups taking over in Afghanistan, someone in the loop told The Associated Press. Imagine that.
Back in June, the Pentagon’s top leaders said an extremist group like al Qaeda could regroup in Afghanistan and present a threat to the US homeland inside of two years of the American military’s disastrous withdrawal from the country thanks to people like Mark Milley. Twenty years after the United States invaded Afghanistan for harboring al Qaeda terror leaders who planned and executed the 911 attacks, experts now say the Taliban and al Qaeda are still aligned, and other violent terror groups could also find safe haven under the new/old Taliban regime.
Based on the unfolding situation, officials now believe terror groups can grow much faster than expected, according to someone with direct knowledge of the briefing but told the AP they wanted to remain anonymous in order to talk about the details of the call.
On the call between Biden administration officials and senators were Milley, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and the radically woke Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. Administration officials said US intelligence was working on forming a new timeline based on growing threats according to the anonymous source.
Also on Sunday. Intel officials, both current and former, pushed back on criticisms of their failure to foresee how quickly Kabul would fall in the absence of US military forces there. A senior intelligence official said “a rapid Taliban takeover was always a possibility,” adding: “As the Taliban advanced, they ultimately met with little resistance. We have always been clear-eyed that this was possible, and tactical conditions on the ground can often evolve quickly.” Of course, that official spoke on condition of anonymity as well.
President Joe Biden, who is suddenly on vacation, previously said of such a takeover “the likelihood there’s going to be the Taliban overrunning everything and owning the whole country is highly unlikely.” That falls under the highly popular category of “Biden was wrong.”
Retired (of course) Lt. General Robert Ashley, who ran the Defense Intelligence Agency until October 2020, said with fewer Americans mixed with Afghan forces, there was less insight into how they would perform.
Trump took the US military presence in Afghanistan down to 2,500 troops. He also created a plan that Biden threw out the window.
According to the former President:
“He ran out of Afghanistan instead of following the plan our Administration left for him – a plan that protected our people and our property and ensured the Taliban would never dream of taking our Embassy or providing a base for new attacks against America. Facts would guide the withdrawal on the ground,” the former Commander-in-Chief said.
“It’s very, very difficult to gauge the morale down at the unit level because you’re just not there anymore,” Ashley said. But there were 2,500 troops there. “And I wouldn’t be surprised if Afghan leaders would tell us only what we want to hear anyway.”
With the Taliban now in control, it will be more difficult to monitor terror threats in Afghanistan. Intelligence agencies inside Afghanistan work side by side with troops. Spies are very limited without US troops there and that means there will be little to no intel on the morale of Afghan troops and, worse, no intel of support for the Taliban terrorists.
“If they leave, which they did, that means we leave as well,” said Marc Polymeropoulos, a 26-year CIA operative who held several roles related to Afghanistan during his career. “And that certainly affects our intelligence gathering footprint.”
Think about this. Like the Arab Spring that happened under Obama/Hillary that ignited a spark in the Middle East that led to the rise of ISIS and other terror groups, this victory for the Taliban will certainly spark other terror groups new and old to rise up and start planning to kill the infidels of the world again.
Thanks to the Biden administration screwing up the Afghanistan withdrawal, it appears that 20 years of work in that country now seem to all have been for nothing.
National Security officials briefed House members where tensions were high. Republican House minority leader Kevin McCarthy was furious when the Biden administration wouldn’t confirm that Afghani President Ashraf Ghani left the country, according to someone in the meeting.
“Why are we doing this now?” McCarthy asked.
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Ghani left the country at the same time Taliban insurgents moved in on Sunday. He posted on Facebook that he chose to leave the country to avoid bloodshed in the capital, probably his own. He never revealed his destination.
Rich is a conservative syndicated opinion writer and runs Maga-Chat.com. He writes about politics, culture, liberty, and faith.
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