Rep. Ted Lieu explained how Donald Trump laid the groundwork for the Taliban’s inevitable takeover of Afghanistan.
September 14, 2021

During Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s appearance before the House Foreign Affairs Committee Monday, Lieu neatly laid out the series of events set in motion by Trump. Naturally, the Republicans have developed a severe case of amnesia about them.

LIEU: Donald Trump surrendered to the Taliban. And he said we are leaving Afghanistan, we’re not coming back, and we’re not gonna fight you anymore.

Now, our Republican colleagues want to say that somehow it is conditions-based. And did you notice that earlier, they didn't want you to talk about the conditions. Because the main condition is that the Taliban was going to stop attacking U.S. forces. Isn’t that correct?

BLINKEN: That is correct.

Lieu went on to debunk Republicans’ BS that Trump's military mojo had kept the troops safe for the last year and a half: “The Taliban stopped attacking U.S. forces because of this agreement,” Lieu said. “If the Biden administration had somehow said, ‘Hey, just kidding, we’re not leaving Afghanistan, we’re gonna renege on this agreement,' the Taliban would have started attacking U.S. forces again.”

Blinken said both those statements were correct.

Next, Lieu pointed out that Trump withdrew the vast majority of troops from Afghanistan before President Joe Biden took office. Lieu said, “Donald Trump executed not only the surrender agreement, but also 70-80% of the surrender, of the withdrawal. and he left you all with nearly 2500 U.S. troops and the Taliban was still meeting their conditions.”

So, left with about 80% fewer troops, Trump’s surrender resulted in the Biden administration "literally put in a box" where he had to withdraw all the U.S. forces or else have our greatly reduced forces face renewed attacks by the Taliban, Lieu continued.

Blinken agreed and added that the Taliban would have also begun an offensive against Afghanistan cities, which they had previously refrained from.

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