Jen Psaki’s Answer on if Biden Regrets How Afghanistan Exit Strategy Played out Is Unacceptable

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

It’s hard to imagine any Commander in Chief of the United States military “standing by” or “having no regrets” about an exit strategy that turned out as badly as President Joe Biden’s has in Afghanistan, with last week’s suicide bombings being a cruel and bloody reminder that “failure” doesn’t even come close to describing how disastrous the withdrawal has been.

The lives of Americans and Afghans alike have been lost. Many Americans are still stranded and are getting mixed signals from the Biden administration as to what the next steps to take are – if any. We also now know that the United States gave the names of Americans and Afghans to the Taliban, “ostensibly done to help facilitate their passage through various checkpoints,” as my colleague Bonchie reported, and then lied about it. Massive amounts of military equipment in Afghanistan are now in the hands of Taliban terrorists and (reportedly) their allies in the region.

With all of that in mind, you’d think that even if President Biden himself couldn’t muster up the courage to admit he had some regrets about how things have rapidly deteriorated over the last two weeks that some in his administration could speak on his behalf and admit to some, seeing as cleaning up for Biden’s flubs, gaffes, and inappropriate “jokes” appears to be their jobs.

But no, that’s not happening, as demonstrated below by White House press secretary Jen Psaki earlier today during the daily briefing when she was asked whether or not Biden had any regrets about how the withdrawal process played out.

In this first clip, Psaki doesn’t even answer the question, instead giving off a canned response about how Biden had met with some of the family members of some of the fallen over the weekend, and noting how we should honor the lives of our fallen heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice in Afghanistan for thousands of people:

In this next clip, the reporter – perhaps understanding that Psaki dodged her initial question – followed up by asking it again. Psaki’s answer this time around was to tap dance around it by pointing out that Biden was “deeply impacted” by the loss of American lives and then pivoting to the decision to withdraw itself (not the strategy behind it), saying Biden didn’t want to stay any longer because more lives would have been lost:

Yes, we should honor the sacrifices made by the brave men and women in the U.S. military and yes, any day a President has to hear that American military lives have been lost is that President’s worst day in office. But that doesn’t answer the question as to if Biden in retrospect believes things should have been handled differently, so as to avoid the chaos that has ensued over the last two weeks.

We were in Afghanistan for nearly 20 years. There were few people you could find here who wanted us to stay there much longer. But what people didn’t want to see was an unraveling of all that had been done in a matter of a few weeks/months time, with countless lives lost in the process. That’s exactly what happened here, and the fact that the Biden administration can’t at least be honest and upfront about it is an insult to the memories of not just those we lost last week but those we lost over the entirety of the Afghanistan war.

Related: Afghanistan Veteran Puts Dire Situation in Perspective With Message That Should Make Biden Feel Shame