As head of U.S. Central Command General Frank McKenzie testifies before the Senate Armed Services committee today, he notes false claims made by President Biden with regard to the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.
“McKenzie confirmed that he initially recommended President Biden maintain 2,500 troops in Afghanistan, contradicting the president’s claim that the military unanimously recommended total withdrawal” reports National Review.
McKenzie also stated he warned that a full withdrawal would lead to the collapse of the Afghan forces and government. Joint Chiefs General Mark Milley also echoed McKenzie’s assertion at the hearing.
Earlier this month in an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, President Biden denied that he was advised to keep a military presence in Afghanistan.
Stephanopoulos asked Biden, “Your military advisors did not tell you, ‘No, we should just keep 2,500 troops. It’s been a stable situation for the last several years. We can do that. We can continue to do that?”
Biden explicitly responded, “No. No one said that to me that I can recall.”
National Review reports both high level generals expressed in the hearing “they both believed that a small footprint should be maintained until the Taliban complied with certain conditions for withdrawal.”
“While neither general would say explicitly that they conveyed that opinion personally to President Biden, McKenzie said it “would be reasonable to conclude that’ their evaluations were delivered to Biden ahead of the withdrawal.”