Amid ongoing developments in Afghanistan — including the Taliban’s takeover of the country alongside the final stages of the withdrawal of U.S. military forces — Mike Pompeo, who served as Secretary of State in the Trump administration, has fervently attempted to cast himself and the Trump team on which he served as in the right regarding Afghanistan-related issues. In reality, the Trump administration essentially uplifted the Taliban last year by striking a deal with the group to withdraw from the country, and both Pompeo and Trump himself publicly touted the Taliban’s supposed cooperation — which obviously turned out to be essentially a smokescreen.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), who is one of the few elected Republicans who have proven themselves willing to speak out against the party line, pointed out these facts this week. In response to a post on Twitter from Pompeo, Kinzinger wrote as follows:
‘No tweet is going to make Americans forget that you negotiated a terrible deal with the Taliban, cut the #Afghanistan government out of the negotiations, and released 5000 Taliban all to please the former president. You knew this was wrong, but wanted Trumps support.’
No tweet is going to make Americans forget that you negotiated a terrible deal with the Taliban, cut the #Afghanistan government out of the negotiations, and released 5000 Taliban all to please the former president. You knew this was wrong, but wanted Trumps support. https://t.co/hwy8fWLMiL
— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) August 17, 2021
Pompeo also faced scrutiny over the Trump administration’s handling of Afghanistan during a recent appearance on Fox News Sunday, where host Chris Wallace asked Pompeo if he had “regret” for providing “legitimacy” to the Taliban. Pompeo insisted that the Trump administration never “trusted” the Taliban — but their semi-private perspectives don’t change the impacts of their reckless public actions. At one point around the time of last year’s deal-signing between the Trump administration and the Taliban, Trump himself insisted that he “really” believed that the Taliban “wants to do something to show we’re not all wasting time.” And with that kind of staggering miscalculation in the history books, observers are supposed to believe Trump’s recent claims that he’d be handling present circumstances more effectively than Biden? Throughout his entire time in office, Trump was wildly out of his depth, and Americans suffered because of it.