Former President Donald Trump said Tuesday that President Joe Biden should ‘apologize to the whole world’ for the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, which he called a ‘disaster’ and a ‘humiliation’ for the nation.
Trump made the comments in a call in with Fox Business Network with host Stuart Varney – with his appearance airing on cable just hours before Biden plans to speak to the nation following the final pullout of U.S. troops after the 20-year war.
Trump – who negotiated a May withdrawal date with the Taliban and brought U.S. troop levels down to 2,500 before Biden took office – ripped Biden’s execution of the withdrawal, which included a chaotic exit and a terror attack that resulted in the lives of 13 U.S. troops.
‘The withdrawal was a disaster,’ Trump told Varney. ‘They told us to get out they gave us a date and that was it,’ said Trump.
President Donald Trump called the U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan a ‘humiliation’ and demanded President Biden apologize to the country
‘That withdrawal was an absolute humiliation of the United States of America and the admirals and the generals are right, and more than that [he] should resign,’ he said in reference to a letter from senior officials who criticized the withdrawal and said Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley should resign.
Asked what Biden should tell the nation, Trump replied: ‘He should say I’m sorry because he owes an apology. I think the best thing he can do is apologize to the American people and apologize to the world … The whole world deserves an apology.’
Trump also claimed the U.S. had been poised to achieve ‘victory’ at the tail end of the war, which began under the George W. Bush administration weeks after the Sept. 11th attacks and continued through his own presidency and Biden’s.
‘The platter was set, we were set to have a victory in terms of getting out and getting out with dignity and you could even say with victory and it was all lined up. Trump said the Taliban was ‘petrified of us. They were staying away and all he had to do was take what we didn’t finish it up and take all the equipment out,’ he said.
The Taliban had not killed a U.S. soldier in more than a year, under the terms of a withdrawal agreement, but had been rolling up gains against the Afghan government forces. Biden has said if the U.S. shirked the withdrawal date it would have required a surge of more troops in a civil war.
Trump repeated his call for the U.S. to have blown up military equipment. The Taliban are believed to possess billions in U.S. gear after the collapse of U.S. backed Afghan government forces
Trump himself called for pulling out of Afghanistan, and negotiated a May withdrawal date with the Taliban
‘He kept looking at his watch yesterday,’ Trump said, in reference to Biden appearing to look at his watch during a dignified transfer ceremony. Trump said it meant ‘like get me out of here’
Trump also resumed his argument that the U.S. should ‘blow up’ military equipment and keep the Bagram air base, after a series of photo images of what was left behind.
‘This is a $10 billion base they built over years and it is there and built and it is in perfect territory for us to have as an outpost and what they’ve done, many people are there, many left behind,’ he said.
‘I actually said every nail, every screw, I want everything out. And the people out, obviously. You start with the people and then the equipment. And then you blow up what you want to blow up and you keep maybe Bagram, because we were planning on keeping Bagram because of its relationship, its location to China,’ he said.
If Trump was planning on maintaining a presence in Bagram, it wasn’t mentioned in the Taliban peace deal. But his comments on equipment follow reports of an estimated $85 billion left behind – from helicopters to fixed-wing aircraft, night vision goggles, helmets, body armor and weapons.
Trump also pounded Biden for having appeared to look at his watch during a dignified transfer ceremony for U.S. troops killed in the terror attack, which the military assessed was carried out by ISIS-K. Trump claimed it signaled Biden didn’t want to be there.
‘He kept looking at his watch yesterday,’ Trump said of Biden’s Sunday visit. ‘When he kept looking at his watch at Dover with the parents and spouses of people who were killed, Marines and the Navy, … looking at his watch like get me out of here, I want to go home, get me out. How many times did he look at his watch when he did that yesterday? It was a disgrace,’ said Trump.
At the same time, Trump defended his own decision to position the U.S. toward a pullout, something he called for even into his last weeks in office.
‘There is no bigger person to getting out of the Middle East than me. I’ve spoken to you many times about it. It is quicksand,’ he said.
Trump also fumed about military equipment left behind. Although the Pentagon says the military disabled helicopters and weapons at the airport in Kabul, there are indications that billions worth of helicopters, vehicles, weapons, and ammunition is now in the hands of the Taliban, members of whom are now brandishing U.S. provided uniforms and weaponry.
‘When I heard they left the equipment – I am a person that wanted to get out, but I am also a person’ that would have ‘bombed the hell out of’ the equipment, he said.
He said it was the ‘the finest equipment made.’
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