Top Defense officials testified yesterday during a Senate hearing on Afghanistan. Two generals admitted they gave Biden the option to keep forces in the country.
Top Defense officials testified yesterday during a Senate hearing on Afghanistan, with Gens. Mark Milley and Frank McKenzie revealing they urged President Biden to keep a reserve force of 2,500 troops in Afghanistan.
- This is in contrast to President Biden’s remarks on Aug. 18 in which he told ABC News no one recommended keeping a reserve force.
- Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin admitted the administration was caught flat-footed: “The fact that the Afghan army we and our partners trained simply melted away — in many cases without firing a shot — took us all by surprise.”
- Gen. Milley also faced withering criticism over phone calls last year to his Chinese counterpart in which he said was an attempt to “avert a crisis over apparent Chinese fears” President Trump would launch an attack on China.
- Milley also addressed a conversation with Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Jan 8 during which she called President Trump’s mental capacities into question, saying he “sought to assure her that nuclear launch is governed by a very specific and deliberate process.”
- The Washington Post led their coverage of the hearing with the generals’ acknowledgement that they advised President Biden not to withdraw all American troops from Afghanistan.
- CBS News highlighted Milley’s admission that the withdrawal from Afghanistan was a “strategic failure.”
- New York Times emphasized Milley’s “adamant” denials of impropriety regarding his phone calls to Chinese military command, saying it was a “part of his duties as the country’s top military officer.”
- Newsmax interviewed GOP Rep. Michael Waltz who blasted President Biden for lying about what recommendations on Afghanistan his military leaders gave him.
- OANN reported on Gen. Milley’s defense of his calls to the Chinese and conversation with Speaker Pelosi, which Republican elected officials claim were “undermining the commander in chief at the time.”
- RedState detailed key findings from yesterday’s hearing, calling it “an epic cluster for the Biden administration” and a “devastating indictment” of the botched Afghanistan withdrawal, highlighting the utter dishonesty of the White House press secretary.
Unfortunately, it is up to lesser-known, second-tier outlets like RedState, which does not have the intellectual and reputational gravitas (deserved or not) of mainstream media to connect the dots. Milley’s testimony wasn’t a one-off event like it is being treated. It is the latest chapter in a story of dishonesty and incompetence. But the mainstream media is wholly unwilling to tell the story in a larger context.
© Dallas Gerber, 2021