Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster, one of Trump’s former national security advisors, condemned Trump’s May 1, 2021, withdrawal plan from Afghanistan as a “surrender agreement.” He concluded that the collapse of the Afghan government can be directly traced back to this “capitulation.” Trump’s May 1 agreement foolishly relied on a Taliban promise to negotiate with the Afghan government and to prevent the resurgence of al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups in their country. Trump also caved to demands to release 5,000 of the Taliban’s most experienced and dangerous fighters. Brilliant! What could possibly go wrong?
John Bolton, another national security advisor of the previous administration, ridiculed Trump’s Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for trying to “rewrite history” regarding his spineless negotiations with the Taliban. Others will simply try to forget this debacle. It was President Biden who had the courage to end this 20-year war on his watch rather than kick the can down the road — something none of his three immediate predecessors were willing or able to do. President Biden understood there would be foreseen and unforeseen consequences to his actions and was willing to face the tsunami of criticism which would, inevitably, follow.
On a related note, Trump (aka: “The Lone Deranger”) said, “If only we had Robert E. Lee to command our troops in Afghanistan, that disaster would have ended in a complete and total victory many years ago.” One unabashed racist and big-time loser praising another. Who could have seen that coming? An Important difference is that Robert E. Lee was man enough to accept defeat and surrender at Appomattox without whining that his beloved Confederacy was cheated out of its preordained, victorious destiny. Trump and the GOP are unlikely to ever follow in those footsteps.