On Monday night, former CIA analyst Matt Zeller who served as an embedded combat adviser with Afghan security forces and has run for Congress as a Democrat blasted President Biden following his speech to the nation about the Afghanistan debacle.
During the interview, MSNBC’s Brian Williams insisted Biden “owned his decision,” “I hope he gets to own their deaths, too.”
Mr. Zeller, it’s almost ironic now to state the name of the organization you founded given what we’re watching go on, though I’m curious to hear your reaction of this consequential speech by the American president: didn’t run from it; he owned it. He owned his decision; he owned the fact that as he put it, the buck stops with him.
But, Matt Zeller, a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve and the author of “No One Left Behind,” slammed Williams:
“I hope he gets to own their deaths, too,” Zeller lashed out. “I feel like I watched a different speech than the rest of you guys. I was appalled. There is such a profound bold-faced lie in that speech: the idea that we planned for every contingency? I have been personally trying to tell this administration since it took office; I have been trying to tell our government for years that this was coming. We sent them plan after plan on how to evacuate these people. Nobody listened to us. They didn’t plan for the evacuation of our Afghan wartime allies; they’re trying to conduct it now at the eleventh hour.”
“The thing that they were most concerned about was that the optics of a chaotic evacuation,” he continued. “Well, they got exactly what they were most concerned of by failing to do what was right when we could have done it. We had all the people and equipment in place to be able to save these people months ago and we did nothing.”
“I’m appalled that he thinks we only need to take 2000 people,” Zeller said. “There’s 86,000 people who are currently left behind in Afghanistan alone; we’ve identified all of them for the government. I have no idea why he claims that people don’t want to leave Afghanistan. I have a list of 14,000 names right now of people who want to get out of Afghanistan.”
“And the idea that the Afghan military should be blamed for this?” he asked rhetorically. “Do you know how many casualties the Afghan military took in an average year? More than the United States did in twenty. When you’re not getting paid on a regular basis, when you’re not getting fuel, when no one is supplying you with ammunition and yet you’re still showing up for the fight? How dare us for having to blame these people for not having the audacity to be able to survive a Taliban onslaught.”
“No, no, no,” he insisted. “What we need to be doing right now and what I am appalled that the president didn’t say, which we need to be talking about how we’re going to get every single one of these people out.”
Watch the interview here: