Sen. Lindsey Graham believes the United States will need to return to Afghanistan as the Taliban-controlled country reemerges as a global terror threat.
Speaking to the BBC’s Stephen Sackur, the South Carolina Republican explained that the Taliban “have a view of the world out of sync with modern times” and “want to impose a lifestyle on the Afghan people that I think is going to make us all sick to our stomach.”
“We will be going back into Afghanistan. We’ll have to because the threat will be so large,” the four-term senator said. “But most importantly, they’re gonna give safe haven to al-Qaeda, who has ambitions to drive us out of the Middle East writ-large and attack us because of our way of life. We will be going back into Afghanistan as we went back into Iraq and Syria.”
When a glasses-on-the-rim-of-the-nose Sackur sounded perplexed, Graham, one of the leading voices on foreign policy, explained how recent history and President Joe Biden’s catastrophic withdrawal factor in.
“Why did we go back to Syria and Iraq? Why do we have 5,000 troops in Iraq today?” Graham asked. “Because of the caliphate rising, projecting force outside of Iraq, killing Americans, killing the French, attacking the British. So, yes, it will be a cauldron for radical Islamic behavior. You cannot deal with this over the horizon.”
1. It appears that 4 of the 5 ex-Guantanamo detainees exchanged for Bowe Bergdahl in 2014 have senior positions in the Taliban’s resurrected Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. https://t.co/OT6LATlaXc
— Thomas Joscelyn (@thomasjoscelyn) September 7, 2021
Biden has argued that the U.S. can conduct counterterrorism operations in other countries without the need for a military presence.
“We’ve developed counterterrorism over-the-horizon capability that will allow us to keep our eyes firmly fixed on any direct threats to the United States in the region and to act quickly and decisively if needed,” the president said last month.
Even before a Kabul airport suicide bombing killed 13 U.S. service members and more than 170 Afghan civilians, Graham was one of many lawmakers calling for Biden’s removal from office via impeachment, resignation, or the 25th Amendment.
Only two presidents in the past half-century had a lower approval rating at this point in their terms: Donald Trump in 2017 and Gerald Ford in 1975.
Meanwhile, the Taliban announced appointments to their purported government Tuesday, including an interior minister wanted by the FBI on terrorism charges.
Taliban announce new caretaker government for Afghanistan, naming Mullah Mohammad Hassan Akhund—who is on the U.N. sanctions list and described as “one of the most effective Taliban commanders”—as interim prime minister. https://t.co/o4Qyo8f72d
— ABC News (@ABC) September 7, 2021
No women are in governmental positions, despite the terrorists’ claim last month that they would encourage the “presence of women in different structures according to Islamic law.” Western feminists have said nothing.
Finally, Tuesday, the Taliban seemingly secured victory in the Panjshir Valley — the final pocket of resistance and safe haven for persecuted groups — allowing the terrorists to fully consolidate their rule over Afghanistan. Republican congressmen pleaded with the Biden administration to help the final resistance, but the Democrats apparently had zero interest in stopping the Islamist totalitarians.