Did I Hear That Right?

During his news conference today in which he talked about the final US withdrawal from Afghanistan, President Biden called the operation an “extraordinary success”.

In and of itself, that either ought to make us question Biden’s grasp of reality or maybe his grasp of any semblance of the truth.

Hypocrisy: Two Groups Are Regulars And Here Is The Latest

A common theme on Thinking Man’s Politics is that of hypocrisy. Unlike much of today’s political environment, a person who thinks often understand most viewpoints, whether you may agree or not. And someone who thinks, rather than just repeats soundbites, does not always align with one political party. However, one thing that makes no sense but which we come across too often is hypocrisy among the political elites.

Over time, it has become obvious that two groups you can count on for regular contributions to stories of hypocrisy—and there is no doubt that this will get many angry, because they just won’t admit that “their guy” is ever wrong.  Yet the two groups who seem to always rise to the top of the ‘Hypocrisy List’ are governors who ignore their own covid mandates and the Trump family (yes, pretty much the whole clan).

The latest is Lara Trump, daughter-in-law to the former President, who recently appeared as a guest on Fox News talking about the situation in Afghanistan. One commentator mentioned that the Biden Administration was working with the Taliban to secure safe passage for Americans.  Trump jumped in, saying that Biden was negotiating with terrorist and that President Trump would never do that.

Of course, President Trump is the one that actually negotiated the Afghanistan withdrawal agreement with the Taliban and in Sept. 2019 President Trump himself announced that he had plans to meet with the Taliban at Camp David, of all places, until he cancelled it after a Taliban attack on American forces.

Don’t you hate it when history gets in the way of a good tirade?

Snapshot Of How We Got Where We Are In Afghanistan

Part of any executive and management job, is being able to effectively carry out plans and policies. And that is the concern with the planned withdrawal from Afghanistan scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 31.

So that we understand how the United States got into the position that we are in as we pull out of Afghanistan, let’s look at the things that President Biden and his Administration have done:

  • Perhaps the biggest mistake was the decision to voluntarily evacuate Bagram Air Base, the large US base just outside of Kabul. This forced the US to use the Kabul municipal air base, where we had no infrastructure and the Taliban are in control of everything that goes on.
  • The United States gave a list of Americans and Afghan allies that we want to get out of the country to the Taliban. What do you really think the Taliban will do with that list?
  • The head of US Central Command, Gen. McKenzie, said that we are sharing intelligence with the Taliban. So we have told the Taliban what we know and don’t know?  Of course, an enemy would never use that against us, right?
  • The President said that the Taliban had given their word to provide security, and we saw how that turned out.
  • The President has said that the Taliban will give safe passage to Americans trying to leave the country. Yet, somehow, we still have Americans that can’t get out of the country.

Looking back at these moves, it is hard to imagine how the US could have done anything more to screw things up, even if we had tried.

Private Groups Doing What US Government Says It Can’t

It has taken me a day to process the terrorist attack that killed 13 Americans and numerous others in Afghanistan yesterday.

The decision to withdraw at this time from Afghanistan was made by President Trump. President Biden did not change that decision, so whatever the issue, the question about withdrawal was a bipartisan one. But running a country is not simply about policy, and often we overlook that. You have to be able to be effective, to be able to do the job at hand and to carry out the policies that you espouse.

What we are seeing in Afghanistan is a plan, policy and military that is not being effective-to the point of incompetence, and now American lives have been lost as a result.

I still have a hard time putting into words my thoughts because they are clouded by emotions over a totally needless loss of life that, as a veteran, I probably feel slightly more than other members of the public. Until such time as I can articulate what should be said, I am only left to ask questions…mostly “Why?”

A private organization has rescued and flown out several hundred Christians in the last two weeks. Under the Taliban, people who are openly Christian would be in grave danger and a group of private citizens organized flights to get them out.

A group of military veterans made headlines when they organized their own effort to get out Afghan allies and their families who had helped the US and its military and so had become targeted by the Taliban. Unfortunately, some of the people they were working to get out are unaccounted for at the Kabul airport after yesterday’s bombing but the group had been able to get out a few hundred people prior to that.

Those are just two examples. So the question is simply this: Why is it that private groups can organize, take action and can get people out of the country but the US military is having a hard time doing the same thing, and the US State Department has told Americans not to come to the airport because they can’t make sure they are safe?  Why can people with compassion do something that the whole of the US government and our military cannot seem to do?

And while we are asking questions, why is it that many of our allies, such as Britain and France, our going out and getting their citizens and escorting them to flights out of Afghanistan but yet the United States has told our citizens they are on their own to get to the airports and that the US military will not help them?

UN Human Rights Council Ignores Taliban

The United Nations Human Rights Council met yesterday to discuss the reported incidents and videos of beatings and atrocities by the Taliban, in the past week since they have taken control of Afghanistan.

The Council met, adjourned and did not condemn any of the actions and did not mention the Taliban at all, for that matter.

As if having Russia and Cuba as members of the Human Rights Council was not enough to prove how useless it is, to ignore Taliban abuses should.

Oh, and for the record, the main funding for the Human Rights Council comes from the United States taxpayer.

The Problem With America’s Military? They March In High Heels!

The US military is formidable. However, the US military is not what it once was.

One need look no further than incidents over the last five years to be reminded of how things that once were taken for granted, now cannot be and are indicative of how far our capabilities have fallen. In 2017, in two separate incidents in the Pacific, US Navy ships collided with other vessels on the open seas which resulted in a loss of life. The year before, US patrol craft were captured by Iran and last year there was an in port fire on the USS Bonhomme Richard which resulted in its total destruction. That does not include things such as billions of dollars in cost overruns and two year delay in the delivery in the last aircraft carrier, the USS Gerald Ford.

Though those dramatic examples are from the surface Navy, there have been similar concerns about readiness in other branches of the military.

Continue reading “The Problem With America’s Military? They March In High Heels!”

Socialists Don’t Really Believe What They Say (Continued)

Nathan J. Robinson (author of Why You Should Be a Socialist) is editor of the socialist magazine, Current Affairs.  According to a letter from former employees posted on Twitter, Robinson fired most of the magazine’s staff on Aug. 8 when they asked for more worker involvement. 

The former staffers quoted what they said was internal communication from Robinson that said, “I think I should be on top of the org chart, with everyone else selected by me and reporting to me.” According to the open letter, “Yes, we were fired by the editor-in-chief of a socialist magazine for trying to start a worker co-op.”

Robinson has not commented publicly.

Dumbest Thing You’ve Heard All Day

If you thought you were having a crazy day, this will probably top whatever you’ve got.

New York City Mayor “Sandanista Bill” de Blasio has a unique approach to battling crime, even among other radicals.

Continue reading “Dumbest Thing You’ve Heard All Day”