AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — In the last few days, the Taliban seized control in Afghanistan. Back here locally, Representative Ronny Jackson said this sent the wrong message to our allies and our advisories.
Rep. Jackson said in the 20 years of the United States being in Afghanistan, a lot was accomplished such as retaliation for the attacks on September 11th and removing Afghanistan as a harbor for terrorists.
He said leaving Afghanistan was necessary, but how the United States went about it was the least desirable way.
“I think the biggest issue here is not the fact we were pulling out, but how we pulled out and the fact that we had no absolutely, positively no contingency in place,” said Rep. Jackson.
He said as a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Armed Services Committee, he said he has been making arguments that the United States shouldn’t just pick up and leave but have a slow rollout.
According to Rep. Jackson, a Rear Admiral who served in Iraq, he and other military members he knows who served in that region said this outcome was to be expected when no small contingency force was left behind to help deter the Taliban from seizing Kabul.
“If we had a small force at Bagram Air Force Base and still had the capability to gather intelligence or offer surveillance, reconnaissance and intelligence gathering to act as a quick reactionary force and as a counter-terrorism force, they would have thought twice before they took this bold step,” added Rep. Jackson.
Speaking to the nation Monday, President Biden said quote “I’ve learned the hard way that there was never a good time to withdraw U.S. forces,” It’s a point Rep. Jackson agrees with.
“Look, I agree there is never a good time. But there is a right way and a wrong way to do everything. This was absolutely positively 100 percent the wrongest way that you could possibly do this,” said Rep. Jackson.
Rep. Jackson said this will be a huge part of President Biden’s legacy no matter what happens from this point forward.
Rep. Jackson added he hopes they have a hearing in the Foreign Affairs Committee and Armed Services Committee about how this withdrawal went so wrong and address the situation in Afghanistan.
Rep. Jackson said American forces going back into Afghanistan would start another war. Something he said Congress and the President all want to avoid.
Below is our full interview with Rep. Jackson: