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Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:25 PM

Top generals contradict Biden, say they urged him not to withdraw from Afghanistan

Source: Politico

Top generals told lawmakers under oath on Tuesday that they advised President Joe Biden early this year to keep several thousand troops in Afghanistan — directly contradicting the president’s comments in August that no one warned him not to withdraw troops from the country.

The remarkable testimony pits top military brass against the commander-in-chief as the Biden administration continues to face tough questions about what critics are calling a botched withdrawal that directly led to the deaths of 13 American service members, scenes of chaos at the Kabul airport, and the abandonment of American citizens and at-risk Afghans in the war-torn country.

Gen. Kenneth "Frank" McKenzie, the commander of U.S. Central Command, told the Senate Armed Services in a hearing Tuesday that he recommended maintaining a small force of 2,500 troops in Afghanistan earlier this year.

He also noted that in the fall of 2020, during the Trump administration, he advised that the U.S. maintain a force almost double the size, of 4,500 troops, in Afghanistan.

Read more: https://www-politico-com.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.politico.com/amp/news/2021/09/28/top-generals-afghanistan-withdrawal-congress-hearing-514491?amp_js_v=a6&_gsa=1&usqp=mq331AQIKAGwASCAAgM%3D#aoh=16328563553134&csi=0&referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com&_tf=From%20%251%24s&share=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.politico.com%2Fnews%2F2021%2F09%2F28%2Ftop-generals-afghanistan-withdrawal-congress-hearing-514491

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Reply Top generals contradict Biden, say they urged him not to withdraw from Afghanistan (Original post)
Jose Garcia Sep 28 OP
Ritabert Sep 28 #1
padah513 Sep 28 #2
Bleacher Creature Sep 28 #4
BradAllison Sep 28 #20
onetexan Sep 28 #40
DURHAM D Sep 28 #3
Jon King Sep 28 #5
groundloop Sep 28 #21
TheRealNorth Sep 28 #23
Laura PourMeADrink Sep 28 #52
onetexan Sep 28 #41
Laura PourMeADrink Sep 28 #54
hibbing Sep 28 #6
guyfromla Sep 28 #7
brooklynite Sep 28 #18
Laura PourMeADrink Sep 28 #53
grumpyduck Sep 28 #8
wnylib Sep 28 #38
Botany Sep 28 #9
hamsterjill Sep 28 #10
lapfog_1 Sep 28 #11
UnderThisLaw Sep 28 #47
Mike Nelson Sep 28 #12
IronLionZion Sep 28 #14
Mike Nelson Sep 28 #19
wnylib Sep 28 #39
Zorro Sep 28 #13
Hoyt Sep 28 #15
Jon King Sep 28 #16
Red Mountain Sep 28 #17
PaulRevere08 Sep 28 #25
TheRealNorth Sep 28 #26
Hulk Sep 28 #22
DanieRains Sep 28 #31
NickB79 Sep 28 #24
TheRealNorth Sep 28 #27
Historic NY Sep 28 #32
snowybirdie Sep 28 #28
ColinC Sep 28 #29
not fooled Sep 28 #30
DanieRains Sep 28 #33
videohead5 Sep 28 #34
Zorro Sep 28 #35
Jon King Sep 28 #36
Slammer Sep 28 #37
TeamProg Sep 28 #42
Cryptoad Sep 28 #43
George II Sep 28 #44
paleotn Sep 28 #45
Roy Rolling Sep 28 #46
marble falls Sep 28 #48
Grins Sep 28 #49
keithbvadu2 Sep 28 #50
LiberalFighter Sep 28 #51
cstanleytech Sep 29 #55
JohnSJ Sep 29 #56
Dopers_Greed Sep 29 #57

Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:29 PM

1. Sorry Generals Trump signed up for a complete withdrawal

....and there's no point endangering several thousand troops when Trump released 5000 Taliban prisoners looking for retribution. Time to go.

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Response to Ritabert (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:33 PM

2. Good point

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Response to Ritabert (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:40 PM

4. I'm pretty sure the military was confident that they could get Trump to back down.

And since Trump is a buffoon who can easily be persuaded using flattery, they're probably right.

The fact that Biden stuck to his guns must have come as a culture shock to the generals, since even Obama gave them more deference than they deserved (and I love Obama).

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Response to Ritabert (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:14 PM

20. He bragged about it....

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Response to Ritabert (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:42 PM

40. +1 -K&R

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:39 PM

3. This is soooooo damn boring. nt

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:42 PM

5. Don't care, only care about health care, infrastructure, education, climate change.

Whatever, maybe Biden was hearing different things, do not care. Time to get back to focusing on real issues that affect Americans every day.

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Response to Jon King (Reply #5)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:16 PM

21. All true..... HOWEVER this will become a huge GQP talking point for the next 3 years

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Response to groundloop (Reply #21)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:32 PM

23. Well, it sounds like Republicans want to let the generals make foreign policy...

That sounds like a dictatorship to me.

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Response to TheRealNorth (Reply #23)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 11:03 PM

52. Hmmm. Not about that at all

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Response to groundloop (Reply #21)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:43 PM

41. Doesn't matter, anything can be a GQP talking pt

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Response to groundloop (Reply #21)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 11:16 PM

54. Yup. You are right. It doesn't really matter whether any of us here

care or not.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:42 PM

6. Oh great, this will be all over 24/7

I'm not sticking my head in the sand, but I am tuning out the noise from corporate media.

Peace

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:42 PM

7. can someone tell me why this is news?

All those fucking generals are paid whores of the military industrial complex!!

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Response to guyfromla (Reply #7)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:11 PM

18. Remind me who appoints the Secretary in charge of the "military industrial complex"...

…and drafts their budget?

If you have evidence that they lied, present it. Otherwise, the name-calling is meaningless.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #18)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 11:05 PM

53. +1

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:44 PM

8. So now the MSM is going to go all out

on how he denied hearing from the generals and ignore the little inconvenient fact that tfg had already agreed to the withdrawal.

And keep pushing the "botched withdrawal" line.

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Response to grumpyduck (Reply #8)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:29 PM

38. Yes, because MSM and MIC corporate board

members overlap.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:46 PM

9. Because Biden's hands were tied because of Trump deal with the Taliban had 2 choices:

1) Stay and build up the military but at the end of the day we would have to leave the country.

2) Get out and quit wasting our people, blood, and treasure on a no win situation.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:50 PM

10. Really sick of this shit.

Do these generals want to just oust Biden and hold the coronation for Trump to be reinstated? Because that’s what this shit gets used for.

Biden is the Commander-In-Chief and he’s not a raving lunatic like Trump was. These generals are smart enough to know they need to speak carefully.

Sorry for the rant but I am tired of being afraid. Trump needs to be put in jail for the treason that he has committed. When I see that happen, then I’ll worry about criticizing Biden.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:54 PM

11. This is a bullshit LIE

Biden said "it was mixed recommendations from the Pentagon"... The statement was truncated by reporters to just the first part "no, they didn't tell me to leave 2500 troops in Kabul"

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Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #11)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 08:01 PM

47. Most likely

Makes sense considering who posted it

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:54 PM

12. Huh?

"Top generals told lawmakers under oath on Tuesday that they advised President Joe Biden early this year to keep several thousand troops in Afghanistan — directly contradicting the president’s comments in August that no one warned him not to withdraw troops from the country."

Am I missing something? ...or, did the writer miss something? Should it be "not to withdraw any troops" or "not to withdraw several thousand troops"

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Response to Mike Nelson (Reply #12)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 02:59 PM

14. Politico trying to stir up conflict again with sloppy reporting. nt

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Response to IronLionZion (Reply #14)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:13 PM

19. Well...

... that could be more accurate, I believe.

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Response to Mike Nelson (Reply #12)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:31 PM

39. Consider the source. I never read Politico any more.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)


Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:01 PM

15. Have no doubt the generals said we needed more troops there, especially during withdrawal.

That proved true because we had to send in more troops.

I suspect they said we need to keep minimal troops there for years. Generals aren't likely to support pullouts.

We really won't know whether that would have been smart until elections and whether the GOPer swiftboating makes any difference.

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Response to Hoyt (Reply #15)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:05 PM

16. Here is the transcript of what Biden said to Stephanopolous.

Biden clearly said he received split advice. These generals want to make themselves look good under pressure. In reality some experts said one thing, some another. Biden also says he did not recall any of them saying troops should stay forever.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But your top military advisors warned against withdrawing on this timeline. They wanted you to keep about 2,500 troops.

BIDEN: No, they didn't. It was split. Tha-- that wasn't true. That wasn't true.

STEPHANOPOULOS: They didn't tell you that they wanted troops to stay?

BIDEN: No. Not at -- not in terms of whether we were going to get out in a time frame all troops. They didn't argue against that.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So no one told -- your military advisors did not tell you, "No, we should just keep 2,500 troops. It's been a stable situation for the last several years. We can do that. We can continue to do that"?

BIDEN: No. No one said that to me that I can recall. Look, George, the reason why it's been stable for a year is because the last president said, "We're leaving. And here's the deal I wanna make with you, Taliban. We're agreeing to leave if you agree not to attack us between now and the time we leave on May the 1st."

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:05 PM

17. I don't think that directly contradicts Biden

The reason we could get away with much lower troop levels was the agreement Trump made for us to leave. Breaking that agreement would have meant a return to much higher troop levels. How high would depend on how poorly the Taliban took our backing out of the agreement.


8500? (2019)

14000? (2018)

More?

https://www.brookings.edu/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/FP_20200825_afganistan_index.pdf


The General suggested keeping some troops in Afghanistan......but not enough to conduct widespread operations. It was, I think, arguably bad advice.

Keeping too few troops in country was never a good option. It was a false choice.

Biden's real choices were escalate in the hope of forcing the Taliban to concede in negotiations (unlikely to stick when they don't feel coerced) or get out. No third way available whether it's 2500, 250 or 10 troops.




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Response to Red Mountain (Reply #17)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:32 PM

25. It's confusing to me. I heard them say that if we left troops in country after August 1st they

would be subject to attack. That 2,500 wasn't enough to do anything, that they would need tens of thousands and that would lead to escalation and unacceptable levels of death for both troops and civilians.

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Response to Red Mountain (Reply #17)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:36 PM

26. Exactly

The Taliban were not that active because they had an agreement with Trump that we would leave. If we nullified the agreement, we could expect a return of Taliban attacks and American casualties.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:17 PM

22. Hey....is anyone surprised?????

It's what generals like to do....BATTLE! They couldn't give a shit about eh cost of war....their "business is war". Fuck them! Generals enjoyed the hell out Vietnam too. Who actually gives a shit....but the poison fox-propaganda spew....what the disgruntled generals have to say about anything related to continuing wars. Fuck them. darth cheney clicks his heels with them....war monger, neocon military proponents.

Fact is pretty simple. We had little chance to stay, with the Taliban/orange pile of shit agreement; and even if we did...we'd be sending YOUR kids and grandkids over there to die for absolutely fucking nothing.

Fuck these idiots. I'm sure the military complex disagreed as well. Again....who gives a fuck...or should!

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Response to Hulk (Reply #22)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 04:58 PM

31. Well Put Hulk

Well put.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:32 PM

24. And one minute past the withdrawal deadline, the Taliban would have lit them up

With mortars, snipers, suicide bombers, IED's and machine gun nests.

The entire reason we went 18 months without an American casualty is because we agreed under the Doha accord to a complete withdrawal. If we violated our side of the deal, they sure as hell would have violated theirs. And once they were inside the major cities, it would have become a brutal slog, with much of our high tech, high explosive weaponry negated by close combat and civilian populations.

We thought the 13 dead soldiers this summer was bad? We'd see that DAILY.

We'd need TENS of thousands of troops just to maintain a foothold.

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Response to NickB79 (Reply #24)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:38 PM

27. But wars generate clicks for the MSM...

And makes people like Richard Engel relevant.

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Response to NickB79 (Reply #24)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 05:00 PM

32. Exactly they would be bait....

or we'd be bad to full on conflict. You don't get to change the rules that last moron made, temping fate after the May date was tolerated. What did the Generals Tell Trump when he releases the prisoners, pull out the majority of the troops...did I miss that?

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 03:53 PM

28. Glad Politico

is putting us straight!

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 04:15 PM

29. yawn

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 04:42 PM

30. OK, they can parse Biden's words here

but red don blatantly lied multiple times a day, and most of the media didn't really do much with the deluge of "alternative facts," so I think my outrage meter will stay on low in this case.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 05:01 PM

33. Democrats Get Attacked For Not Being Perfect While The GOP Is Basically A Terrorist Organization

Who's members rarely say anything that is true.

Attacked by the media for farting while the traitors are staging a coup, and will hang the fake news once complete.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 05:13 PM

34. You have to look at how

Stephanopoulos put the question to the president...So no one told -- your military advisors did not tell you, "No, we should just keep 2,500 troops. It's been a stable situation for the last several years. We can do that. We can continue to do that"? The generals would have never told him anything like this. It was not a stable situation. Our troops were getting killed and if we had broken the agreement with the Taliban they would've attacked our troops. They may have told him we can keep 2,500 troops there but the Taliban's attacks would have escalated. 2,500 troops in no way could have kept the situation stable. Trump pulled over 13,000 troops out after he made the deal with the Taliban.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 05:14 PM

35. The Republican Senators were baiting the Generals throughout the hearing

They wanted them to declare that Biden "lied" about the advice he received regarding withdrawing from Afghanistan. They were just trying to score political points at the expense of military order and discipline.

Of special note were Tillis of North Carolina (who railed about Biden not being obliged to abide by the agreements made by Trump with the Taliban) and that asshole Alaskan Senator who was so busy fulminating about the Afghan withdrawal that he ran out of time to ask "the one question" he demanded they respond to.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 05:39 PM

36. Of course it will become a Repug talking point, so what. Voters care about other stuff.

Every administration official from the President on down just repeats the same thing "all sorts of mixed opinions were given". Biden said mixed in his interview, mixed it is. Sound like robots. whatever. Also blame it on Trump over and over, he released the hounds. Biden also said that I recall. He is more than covered with all but those that hate him no matter what.

All but right wing nut voters care about infrastructure, health care, climate change, education.

If thats all the MAGAs have to run on, let them do it.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:28 PM

37. butt-covering

Biden should take this as a lesson to not make blanket statements like "no one warned me...."

People who get to the point in their careers where they get to advise presidents have mastered the art of covering their own butts.

Of course Biden was warned of the perils of withdrawing from Afghanistan.

I'm sure even in the same conversation that some of them were advocating for withdrawal that they warned him that it'd be dangerous...because that's how an adviser protects his own position as an adviser. They aren't there primarily to be cheerleaders or advocates but to perpetuate themselves in a top position where they can continue to influence policy.

And you don't accomplish that by going out on a limb while naked.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:51 PM

42. Even MORE TROOPS would likely die if we left some there.


Yes, it's sad that people died, very sad.

But WTF about all of the young families' COVID deaths?

Families didn't "sign up" to be LIED TO by the fucking GOP.


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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 06:53 PM

43. Thank God we have a POTUS

who got us out of there no matter what the Generals were telling him.!

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 07:28 PM

44. Later on in the hearing they said that keeping them there past the end of August wouldn't have....

....resulted in a different outcome.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 07:38 PM

45. Top generals tried to convince JFK....

to bomb the shit out of Cuba. Maxwell Taylor, Curtis LeMay and others. Good thing he didn't take that advice.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 07:47 PM

46. Their Comments are Noted

Let the generals run and win the presidency, then they’ll be Commander-in-Chief.

As Commander-in-Chief they can make that decision. For now, STFU.

I trust the guy we elected to be the Commander-in-Chief over generals like this.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 08:46 PM

48. So what? Hell with them.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 08:46 PM

49. More troops? For longer? To what end?

Go back and get a refresher class on Von Clausewitz’s principles of war. Apparently you failed “Objective.”

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 08:47 PM

50. Generals: What would be your goals and what would you accomplish by staying?

Generals: What would be your goals and what would you accomplish by staying?

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Tue Sep 28, 2021, 10:54 PM

51. The outcome would had been worse if they didn't do the withdrawal.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Wed Sep 29, 2021, 04:49 AM

55. Problem is though Trump started it already and the Republicans in the House and Senate are

so afraid of Trump still that they continue to follow his orders so getting their support to keep any of our military there would have been difficult if not impossible.

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Wed Sep 29, 2021, 07:28 AM

56. Amazing how it seems a press who has essentially ignored Afghanistan for years, no is so concerned

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Response to Jose Garcia (Original post)

Wed Sep 29, 2021, 08:18 AM

57. The Generals didn't want to kill the cash cow

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