Earlier this week, this writer addressed the Biden administration’s instinctive lying on matters big and small, concluding: “When the president allows his key advisors lie to us about a dog bite, the only confidence the American people can have is that he will not be honest with us about these and other life-and-death matters if the truth would hurt his poll numbers or endanger Democrats’ reelection chances.”
Regrettably, recent events confirm that the president’s deceptions and misstatements are intentional and driven by political motives. This was confirmed by multiple events, some the very next day after the previous article published.
The first confirming event was in President Biden’s own words. Biden verified that lying about success in Afghanistan is part of his political strategy.
A Foreign Quid Pro Quo Based on Lies
In a bombshell report on Aug. 31, Reuters reported on an audio recording of a July 23 call between Biden and then-Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. It released a transcript. In the call, Biden stated, “I need not tell you the perception around the world and in parts of Afghanistan, I believe, is that things aren’t going well in terms of the fight against the Taliban.”
Biden then gave Ghani his marching orders: “And there is a need, whether it is true or not, there is a need to project a different picture.” His own words condemn the president: “Whether it is true or not…” As the indispensable Mollie Hemingway noted on Fox News on Sept. 2, “What this phone call shows is that the withdrawal was, like so many other parts of the war, communicated to the American public with lies.” Indeed it was.
But this was even worse. Again, Hemingway: “While the previous president was impeached over a phone call and accused of a quid pro quo, here you actually have a president asking someone to lie on his behalf and conditioning military aid on part of those lies.”
Biden knew Afghanistan was facing an existential crisis: Ghani confirmed disaster was looming if he did not receive stepped-up American aid: “We are facing a full-scale invasion, composed of Taliban, full Pakistani planning and logistical support, and at least 10-15,000 international terrorists, predominantly Pakistanis thrown into this, so that dimension needs to be taken account of.” Ghani also emphasized that continued air support was essential.
Knowing he had the leverage, Biden made clear that continued U.S. military support would be forthcoming only if he was given a plan to project that “different picture.” He said, “You clearly have the best military, you have 300,000 well-armed forces versus 70-80,000 and they’re clearly capable of fighting well, we will continue to provide close air support, if we know what the plan is and what we are doing.”
This shows that in the words of the 2019 Articles of Impeachment against President Trump, President Biden “sought to pressure the Government of [Afghanistan] to take these steps by conditioning official United States Government acts of significant value to [Afghanistan] on its public announcement of the [plan]. President [Biden] engaged in this scheme or course of conduct for corrupt purposes in pursuit of personal political benefit. In so doing, President [Biden] used the powers of the Presidency in a manner that compromised the national security of the United States and undermined the integrity of the United States democratic process.”
Lying About Abandoning Americans in Afghanistan
Another recent confirmation of the administration’s perfidy (and of this author’s pessimistic prediction) came from the Democrat Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Rep. Adam Smith. Smith confirmed that not only were Americans and allies being abandoned to the mercies of the Taliban, but that the president intentionally lied to the American public about it.
In an interview with Brett Baier on Fox News, Smith made clear that what Biden told us about his plans and intention to get all Americans out of Afghanistan before his arbitrary, self-imposed Aug. 31 deadline was completely at odds with what his administration was telling Congress.
Baier first questioned Smith about the president’s prior statements. He played Biden’s now infamous statement in his Aug. 18 interview with George Stephanopoulos when the president promised, “If there’s American citizens left, we are going to stay until we get them all out” (beginning at 1:03).
Baier then contrasted Biden’s promise with the facts on the ground. He played an excerpt from Gen. Kenneth McKenzie’s press conference in which the CENTCOM commander acknowledged there were Americans left behind.
He stated, “None of them made it to the airport and were able to be accommodated.” Subsequent reporting, of course, has amplified that concern, with stories of stranded and missing American citizens, school children, and even an Afghan soldier who had helped rescue then-senators Biden, Kerry and Hagel.
Baier also asked a question that remains on many Americans’ minds: “The president said we were going to stay until all Americans were out… How can we as a country have left Americans on the ground?”
Smith then revealed that the “public message,” including President Biden’s statements to the American people, were not true; they were not what was being briefed to Congress. He first confessed the administration’s incompetence: “The public messaging was all over the map on this.” He then contrasted that “public messaging” with what the administration was saying secretly, behind closed doors: “I had many private conversations, and we got a classified brief last week for the Armed Services Committee. The mission was clear in that context” (emphasis added).
Stop and think about that. What the president, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, and others were publicly representing to Americans and the rest of the world was inconsistent—“all over the map”—but the “real mission” as briefed to the Armed Services Committee in a classified setting “was clear.”
Doing One Thing, Telling Americans the Opposite
This secret “real mission” also was decidedly different than the reassurances being served up for consumption by a gullible public, many of whom would not think that the president would misrepresent something this consequential. Smith says the administration told Smith and the Armed Services Committee that they “will have the mission complete by August 31st.”
And what was that “real mission,” Smith asked? He made clear that it was not what the public was being told by the president and his senior advisors: “Publicly the mission was get everybody out, but that really wasn’t the mission… What the mission really was get as many people out as we possibly can by August 31st when our troops come out and try to make sure we maintain the conditions with the Taliban to continue to get people out after that, even after our troops have left. And, no, I don’t think that they made that clear as publicly as they should have. They kept saying things like what the president said when that was not really what they were trying to do.”
Regrettably, Smith’s interview reveals that the president’s representations to the American people that “we are going to stay until we get them all out” was not just an innocent mistake, not just a wishful but unfulfilled prediction. It was a premeditated, calculated lie.
A Deliberate Scheme of Lying to Americans
Biden’s self-congratulatory speech on Aug. 31 also reinforced his fraudulent approach. In his Aug. 18 promise to the nation, the president did not say that we would leave hundreds of Americans behind and protect them with diplomatic efforts from 1,200 miles away in Doha and threats of strikes from “over the horizon,” as he offered on Aug. 31. To the contrary, his Aug. 18 promise was unambiguous: “We are going to stay until we get them all out.”
That promise, like so many others, was not just mistaken. It was part of a deliberate plan and pattern of misleading the American people.
The abandonment of Americans and allies who fought with us, coupled with the lies about the strategy, is a disaster. It is contrary to the military’s fundamental ethos and everything that this country stands for. It compromises both our national honor and security.
But, “whether it is true or not,” this president and his enablers “need to project a different picture”: that the evacuation and retreat was a great success, that it all went according to plan, and that this administration will continue protect our fellow citizens both in Afghanistan and at home. For shame, Mr. President, for shame.