Sen. Mitch McConnell weighs in on Afghanistan situation
Longtime senator calls it ‘an unmitigated disaster’
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A crowd of desperate Afghans surrounded U.S. military airplanes at the Kabul airport on Monday, clinging onto the outside in an attempt to escape the country as their own president fled a day earlier amid the Taliban uprising.
Meanwhile, U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., visited Jeffersontown on Monday to discuss the deteriorating situation.
“What we’ve seen is an unmitigated disaster; a stain on the reputation of the United States of America,” McConnell said.
McConnell said he never supported the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan during President Barack Obama’s administration or President Donald Trump’s, and he doesn’t support it now under President Joe Biden because it isn’t in America’s best interest to contain the terrorists, which he said is the main reason the U.S. sent troops to the country in the first place.
“I think Afghanistan is lost,” McConnell said. “Every terrorist around the world, in Syria, in Iraq, in Yemen, in Africa, are cheering the defeat of the United States military by a terrorist organization in Afghanistan.”
When asked how long McConnell thought the U.S. should have kept troops in Afghanistan, he told reporters he didn’t have an answer.
“Well, we’ve been in Germany, Japan, and South Korea for over half a century,” he said. “What I can tell you is (Afghanistan) was not a haven for Al-Qaeda, not a single American personnel got killed for the last year. (Keeping troops in the country) was a relatively benign way to keep the lid on to avoid exactly what we’re seeing.”
On Monday, Biden stood by his decision to withdraw troops. McConnell called on him to send “enough” troops back into the country to rescue as many Americans and Afghans who have helped the U.S. as possible, adding he fears what will happen to the Afghan women and children.
One thousand additional troops were deployed to Afghanistan on Monday, in addition to the 2,500 currently on the ground. The goal is to have 6,000 military personnel present in the country.
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