Joe Biden’s disastrous withdrawal of US military forces from Afghanistan occurred about a half year ago, but the fallout from the embarrassing process continues. Americans are still learning more daily about the absolute number of Americans and allies who were abandoned by the orders of the White House and Pentagon.
Biden Administration officials told America that around 100 US citizens were left behind when the withdrawal. By October, the number was revised to 363. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee now reports that 9,000 Americans were left behind Taliban lines as the military pulled out last August.
Even though the Biden White House had reliable information that large groups of Americans were fleeing Afghanistan after the withdrawal, the Administration continued to tell the country that only 100 to 150 Americans remained in the war-torn nation and were attempting to leave.
The report indicates that the State Department knew between 10,000 and 15,000 Americans stuck in Afghanistan as late as August 17. A week before the suicide bomb attack at the Kabul airport that killed 13 US service members. By August 31, only around 6,000 of those Americans could leave before the country fell entirely back to the Taliban.
Sen. Janes Risch (R-ID) is the ranking Republican on the committee and stated in the report that the Biden Administration failed to plan and execute a “coordinated evacuation” of Americans and allies even though it had actual knowledge that the Taliban was likely to retake Kabul and the rest of the country swiftly.
Risch added that the Administration did not make top-level decisions about organizing withdrawal until “less than a day” before Kabul fell to the Taliban. He commended the work of the Department of Defense in what it was able to accomplish but said that many more people could have been protected if “proper planning had been conducted.”
Even though Biden claimed at the time of withdrawal that the “bottom line” was that 90 percent of Americans who wanted to leave did so, it is becoming more apparent as details trickle out that the level of planning involved in such a major operation was woefully inadequate.