Yet another former Hillary Clinton aide appears to have played a role in the Biden administration's botched Afghanistan withdrawal. Politico reported on Monday that Robby Mook, the Democratic operative who managed Hillary's failed presidential campaign in 2016, was at the Kabul airport performing public relations duties during the evacuation of U.S. citizens and Afghan allies from the Taliban-controlled country.
Mook, a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserve, has been on active duty abroad since February after taking a hiatus from Democratic politics. In addition to managing Hillary's failed 2016 campaign, he was also a state director on her failed 2008 campaign. Most recently, Mook served as president of House Majority PAC during the 2020 election, when Democrats failed to defeat a single Republican incumbent and lost 13 seats in the House, despite winning the presidency.
According to Politico, the failed campaign operative was "part of a group of four public affairs officers dealing with press questions" at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. An anonymous source described him as "just doing his job" and said the former Hillary aide made a self-deprecating remark about not being recognized.
At least Mook has actually served his country in uniform, unlike White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, who was Hillary Clinton's top aide during her tenure as secretary of state, as well as a foreign policy adviser on both of her failed presidential campaigns. President Joe Biden proudly nominated Sullivan to be "one of the youngest national security advisers in decades" and a key component of his inclusive foreign policy team.
"It's a team that will keep our country and our people safe and secure," Biden said, without evidence, in November 2020. "And it's a team that reflects the fact that America is back, ready to lead the world, not retreat from it. Once again sit at the head of the table. Ready to confront our adversaries and not reject our allies. Ready to stand up for our values."
Afghanistan is merely the latest foreign policy disaster over which Sullivan, a Yale graduate with impeccable credentials, has presided. In 2011, he played a key role in the botched military intervention in Libya, which ultimately resulted in the death of U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens as the country became a haven for Islamic terrorists. In 2012, Sullivan oversaw the Obama administration's bumbling response to civil war in Syria and inaction against President Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons against civilians. Years later, he looked on as Russian forces invaded western Ukraine and annexed Crimea, while Islamic State militants wreaked havoc across the Middle East.
The botched withdrawal precipitated a number of calls for Sullivan's resignation. According to the New York Times, even some Democratic lawmakers have suggested Sullivan should quit in order to help the Biden administration "reset the narrative" regarding Afghanistan. "This was an abject failure. People should be held accountable. There's no way to spin it," Democratic strategist Chris Kofinis told the Hill.
Brett Bruen, who served as a national security adviser to President Obama, told the Daily Mail that the chaotic nature of the Afghanistan withdrawal suggested Sullivan had failed to do his job. "In a national security adviser, you absolutely need someone who is able to execute and ensure that any potential problems are identified early and addressed or prepared for," he said. "That didn't happen in this case."
Published under: Afghanistan , Hillary Clinton , Jake Sullivan , Robby Mook