It is clear, it is obvious. The war in Afghanistan did not end on the terms, we wanted. The Taliban, now in power in Kabul. — Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff U.S. Army Gen. Mark Milley
It is clear, it is obvious. The war in Afghanistan did not end on the terms, we wanted. The Taliban, now in power in Kabul. — Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff U.S. Army Gen. Mark Milley
Defense Secretary Austin admits in Senate testimony Afghan army collapse ‘took us all by surprise’
  • The Pentagon acknowledged Tuesday that the rapid collapse of the Afghan army amid a rapid Taliban advance contributed to the Biden administration’s chaotic exodus from the war-weary country.
  • “The fact that the Afghan army we and our partners trained simply melted away, in many cases without firing a shot, took us all by surprise,” Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told the Senate Armed Services Committee.
“The fact that the Afghan army we and our partners trained simply melted away, in many cases without firing a shot, took us all by surprise,” Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“It would be dishonest to claim otherwise,” added Austin, a veteran of the wars in the Middle East.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff U.S. Army Gen. Mark Milley said that while many of the American- and NATO coalition-trained Afghan troops attempted to hold their positions against the Taliban, the majority did not.

“Many units did fight at the very end but the vast majority put their weapons down and melted away in a very, very short period of time,” Milley said. “I think that has to do with will and with leadership but I think we still need to try to figure out exactly why that was,” he added.

“It is clear, it is obvious. The war in Afghanistan did not end on the terms, we wanted. The Taliban, now in power in Kabul,” Milley said.


... Austin said that the U.S. military managed to move more than 7,000 people daily.

“On military aircraft alone, we flew more than 387 sorties, averaging nearly 23 per day. At the height of this operation, an aircraft was taking off every 45 minutes,” he said, adding that “not a single sortie was missed for maintenance, fuel, or logistical problems.”

“Was it perfect? Of course not,” Austin said.

“We moved so many people, so quickly out of Kabul that we ran into capacity and screening problems at intermediate staging bases outside Afghanistan. And we are still working to get Americans out who wish to leave,” he said, adding that the U.S. State Department is also attempting to evacuate Afghan allies enrolled in the Special Immigrant Visa program.

When asked about the lasting impact among NATO allies in the wake of a hurried evacuation, Milley told lawmakers that U.S. credibility was being “intensely reviewed” by allies and adversaries alike. Austin added that American credibility “remains solid” citing his interactions with U.S. allies since the withdrawal.
Read the full article: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/09/28/defense-secretary-austin-admits-afghan-army-collapse-took-us-all-by-surprise.html