Biden Ignored Warnings Before Afghan Withdrawal Disaster, GOP Rep Says

Taliban celebrations of U.S. withdrawal / Reuters
May 24, 2023

The Biden administration did not heed warnings from U.S. officials on the ground in Afghanistan ahead of the 2021 botched withdrawal from the country, a House Republican said this week after viewing a classified cable from State Department officials sounding the alarm at the time.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R., Texas), who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee, reviewed a State Department cable this week that the administration had refused to release for months. The document details the concerns of diplomats at the U.S. embassy in Kabul ahead of President Joe Biden's disastrous exit from the country.

"The dissenters were absolutely right about everything they said, and it was a warning to the administration about what was going to happen and what they needed to do," McCaul told Punchbowl News.  "Unfortunately, the administration didn’t heed all their warnings and we got what we got," McCaul said.

The Republican pressed Biden's State Department for months to see the cable. McCaul earlier this month threatened to hold Secretary of State Antony Blinken in contempt if he did not allow access. It would have made Blinken the first secretary of state to be held in contempt by Congress.

The Biden administration hurriedly withdrew American forces from Afghanistan in August 2021. The country quickly fell to the Taliban, who seized billions of dollars worth of U.S. military equipment. Amid the chaotic evacuation of the country, 13 U.S. service members were killed in an ISIS suicide bombing. The Biden administration has still not properly vetted 88,000 Afghan refugees who fled to the United States after the Taliban took over.