Joe Biden has had talking points when he tries to talk about the “success” that he achieved in Afghanistan.
Among those points are two things he constantly says: that we went in to get Osama bin Laden and that we went to make sure that we were safe from being attacked by al Qaeda/terrorists from Afghanistan again. He said that we successfully achieved both long ago.
But he voted against getting bin Laden and he’s ensured that Afghanistan may be even more dangerous now than before, with the Taliban controlling the country. We were attacked by terrorists before we even left, with the Kabul Airport suicide attack. And now the country will be a haven, not just for the Taliban but for al Qaeda and for ISIS as well.
Biden even lied and claimed that al Qaeda was gone from the country. His own team had to contradict him and say yes, al Qaeda was still in the country.
But perhaps nothing was a more stark example of how empty Biden’s words were than the images today — as the U.S. finally pulled out after 20 years, having gone in to deal with al Qaeda — to have Osama bin Laden’s security chief now return to be embraced by admirers to his home province in Afghanistan, under Taliban protection. A gut-punching image as we come up on the twentieth anniversary of 9/11, if ever there was one.
Dr. Amin-ul-Haq, a major al-Qaeda player in Afghanistan, Osama Bin Laden security in charge in Tora Bora, returns to his native Nangarhar province after it fell to the Taliban. Dr. Amin became close to OBL in the 80s when he worked with Abdullah Azzam in Maktaba Akhidmat. pic.twitter.com/IXbZeJ0nZE
— BILAL SARWARY (@bsarwary) August 30, 2021
Less than 2 weeks after the Taliban took over Afghanistan, Dr. Amin al Haq, Osama bin Laden's former security chief who was detained by Pakistan and then freed, returned to his home town in Nangarhar. With an armed Taliban escort.
You can trust the Taliban – to stick by Al Qaeda https://t.co/JAsI3uvqpB
— Bill Roggio (@billroggio) August 30, 2021
He even gives a thumbs-up as he gets passed through the Taliban checkpoint. Doesn’t look like the Taliban is very divorced from al Qaeda, does it, Joe Biden?
Dr. Amin al Haq, the former head of bin Laden’s Black Guard, was captured on video in a large convoy as it traveled through a checkpoint in Nangarhar province. Haq was accompanied by a large convoy of heavily armed Taliban fighters in brand new SUVs. A small crowd flocked to Haq to shake his hand and take selfies with him.
The video of al Haq is evidence that Al Qaeda commanders now feel secure enough to appear publicly in a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.
Ten days ago, Biden said, “There’s a greater danger from ISIS and — and al Qaeda and all these affiliates in other countries, by far, than there is from Afghanistan.” That was before ISIS-K allegedly attacked and killed 13 of our troops and at least 170 Afghans. He also seems to have forgotten the “thousands” of ISIS guys he effectively let out when they abandoned Bagram.
— Afroz Alam🏴☠️ (@AfrozJournalist) August 27, 2021
General McKenzie: “At least 2,000 hardcore ISIS fighters in Afghanistan now. Of course, many of those come from the prisons that were opened a few days ago. That number is up and probably as high as it’s ever been” pic.twitter.com/mvLAKVH9kI
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 30, 2021
Jake Sullivan tried to clean that up for Biden but only got into more trouble.
Q Thank you, Jake. So, Friday, the President said that we got rid of al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Sunday, the Secretary of State said there is al Qaeda in Afghanistan. So, are you presenting the President with the full picture, or is he just misapplying the intelligence when he makes these public statements?
MR. SULLIVAN: The President was referring to al Qaeda’s capability to attack the United States, which the intelligence community tells us today is not present in Afghanistan. Today, it is not present in Afghanistan.
What is present in Afghanistan right now, to our forces at the airport, is a serious threat from ISIS-K, which we’re trying to deal with. And, of course, there’s the possibility that al Qaeda could reconstitute an external plotting capability in Afghanistan.
That’s why you’ve heard from the President repeatedly about the need for an over-the-horizon capability that will allow the United States, working with partners, to continue to suppress the terrorism threat in Afghanistan from al Qaeda or ISIS-K or anyone else, just as we work to suppress the terrorism threat from al Qaeda and ISIS in Yemen, in Syria, in Somalia, in the Islamic Maghreb, in many other countries.
Yeah, no, that isn’t what Biden said. Biden basically claimed there was no further threat. If there is a further threat, why did he pull troops out? But what it all demonstrates is, yes, Afghanistan is going to be a haven for terrorism on a large scale and they’ll have a ton of our weapons left behind with which to do it.
A mind-blowing graphic in today's Times on what $85bn worth of lost equipment means in practice for the Taliban: pic.twitter.com/GDcuNQbb6P
— Will Brown (@_Will_Brown) August 29, 2021