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Afganistan / What Now?

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by Gatorhead, Aug 12, 2021.

  1. citygator

    citygator VIP Member

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    Ive seen your posts. I can’t answer per the standards of this site. ;)
     
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  2. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    I saw that from Olivia Troye. Left unexplained is whether the Special Visa capability specifically and the gutting of the State Department generally cut the available infrastructure to process SVs. If so, that's a point of discussion in the timing and resource allocation of the decision this year
     
  3. Gatorhall

    Gatorhall Premium Member

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    Biden’s not perfect? Damn the understatement of the day.
     
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  4. domgator

    domgator Premium Member

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    No it was fine to ask here since another poster initiated it. Weird you did not ask him to post it on another thread but went out of your way to tell me to.
     
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  5. CaptUSMCNole

    CaptUSMCNole GC Hall of Fame

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    Yeah, let’s argue about notes not the fact that the most important things Biden said were wrong.
     
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  6. BLING

    BLING GC Hall of Fame

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    That dude even during this crisis was railing against bringing Afghans here because it’s...{checks notes}... replacement theory, its all part of the plot to bring in democrat voters.

    There’s quite a disconnect between the GOP trying to score political points against Biden vs. what they actually did here in Afghanistan. There simply has not been enough pushback against the Stephen Miller/Trump/Bannon type lunatics.
     
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  7. BigCypressGator1981

    BigCypressGator1981 Premium Member

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    If it lessens your fifth grade girl usage of emojis I’m all for it. :D
     
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  8. swampbabe

    swampbabe GC Hall of Fame

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    I wonder how this might get have gone if we had had a normal transition period? Or if several State Dept appointments hadn’t been held up because of Ted Cruz?

    Just thinking’ out loud.
     
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  9. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    I thought of that but it's ultimately very difficult to prove. Logic tells you it had some impact, as did the gutting of the State Department. But then again, you can turn that around to say we should have waited another year to do this if we couldn't handle the processing with current resources. But it was going to be hard to rebuild those resources anyway, and I think the President wanted to avoid getting trapped there by delay. Just speculation.

    I am listening right now to a Lawfare podcast that is going through the very granular discussion of what's occurring. The State Department has surged resources to the Kabul airport. But as of right now, they are trying to process people before they put them on flights, partly because they don't have a designated third party location for post flight processing. Therefore, we have the airlift capability to take out 5,000 per day but are taking out far less.


    By way of comparison, we evacuated 130,000 Vietnamese after the fall of Saigon, via ship, to Guam, for subsequent processing there. But there is no Sea border, so it's only airlift, and there is no location like Guam for subsequent processing.

    Another problem that was caused by the unanticipated rapid fall is that in many cases we had given advance documentation (I forget the legal term), for Afghanis to prove that they had assisted the US and obtain expedited exit processing. But since they are having to go through checkpoints on the way to the airport, a lot of these individuals destroyed that paperwork because they were worried it would make them targets for retaliation, which is not an unreasonable fear.

    Listening to these experts, which are NGO officials that are used to helping with processing, they say it is absolutely urgent to come up with a third party location where we can do processing. In the area, one thinks of the large bases at Doha or other places in the Arabian peninsula. But I doubt they're going to be hospitable to that. And the Turks might have been open, but they are dealing with their own domestic political pressures.

    And of course, you can't ignore the domestic politics, where certain individuals would just love to be able to point to an example of some Afghan that came here and did something we didn't like to score political points against both the administration and the concept of immigration generally.

    It's not an easy situation.
     
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  10. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    Still listening. They just pointed to another well-meaning work around that created unintended confusion. To try to get through checkpoints, since the Taliban has said that they would honor US documents, State Department officials on the ground have been printing out what they call entry passes to get to the airport. But the only paperwork they had were documents that also have the word visa on it. So many of the individuals who have it are confused because they think they have already been issued a US Visa. These are challenging situations. The logistics are not easy.

    Uganda, Philippines and Kuwait have so far agreed to take some of these people. We are still working to find more
     
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  11. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    More from this podcast episode, only because it's so illuminating. It's a legal discussion and they referred to a portion of immigration law of which I have no familiarity. They called it 212-5 authority, which vests the Department of Defense, according to their description, to issue unlimited humanitarian visas, no questions asked, no necessary processing required by law, which is different than the remainder of the immigration code. I don't know anything about this area of law. Just passing on what they say.

    They said something else that I didn't initially agree with but I think they fleshed out their argument which makes it a little bit clearer. They were acting as if this Administration was not processing visas quickly enough because they didn't feel like putting in the extra effort. I'm quite certain that's not correct. What I wanted to holler at them was that they have to understand the domestic political constraints. I'm sure the Administration feels like it has to try to ensure that there are no adverse incidents from anyone that comes in, to avoid even more damage to the immigration debate. One can only imagine Fox News and the like eating up on incident like that.

    But they raised a perhaps more significant political risk for this administration. They said that both the veterans groups and the media are not going to forget, no matter how long it takes, anything happening to their allies who help them when they were in theater, either militarily or journalistically. They said there's no chance this will go away with time unless every effort is made to prevent that from occurring.

    The Truman National Security Project, which is the employer of some of these speakers, has worked with veterans since 2008 to put together something called "The List" of interpreters and translators in both Afghanistan and Iraq so that they could be quickly processed. It's not clear what's happened with that list. They may cover it subsequently. But this is very illuminating.
     
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  12. ridgetop

    ridgetop GC Hall of Fame

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    In fairness most of the complaints that I have seen regarding the Afghan immigrants revolve around who is getting priority to get out. Us service men and women, US citizens or afghan immigrants.
     
  13. gator34654

    gator34654 GC Hall of Fame

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    I did not bother to read all the post, no doubt many are either uninformed or misinformed by what is happening. To listen to the politicians including this President, you get conflicting reports. What seems to be the truth is this president was advised that things were NOT ok and yet he gave the go ahead to first move out our troops which led to this mess. Any rational leader would have given safe withdrawal to Americans and those who helped us first, then move out our equipment and then have a large enough force to ensure these first two have been taken care of before they depart. But no, this senile president chose otherwise and then lies about what is happening on the ground. He has by his ineptitude will likely cause the death of many innocent Americans and supporters along with troops who if given the order will try to extricate them from enemy lines.
    Furthermore, he did all of this without consulting our NATO allies, who were also taken by surprise by his foolish act.
    I am sure there will be those here who will do their best to blame Trump and once again give Biden a pass for this mess, but all I can say is shame on you. Shame on You! Many of you elected this foolish leader and in just a few months in office he has created a firestorm.

    No doubt I was right, some here claim it's Trumps fault, it's Ted C's fault, soon it will be Tucker C's fault. Folks, It was this president who agreed on how and when we got out of Afg. He is in charge. He has the final say. But not surprised some of you need to find a scapegoat to justify this major mistake of a president.

    Even as we speak, Taliban is beating and killing innocent people who cannot get to the airport. Missionaries are reporting the killing of Christians along with those who have Bible apps on their phones. There will be a bloodbath, and it comes down to one president who made the decision to pull the troops, to not have a sufficient force to see that the right people leave safely. All I can do here is pray.
     
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  14. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    One last thing from this podcast and wrapping up, which will hit both sides of the political spectrum. These various NGOs have tried to coordinate with the Administration since April buts ays that they had almost no response. They said there's Congressional legislation to create a future ombudsman for resettlement of allies, but it shouldn't require legislation. That's on the Biden administration.

    On the other hand, they said the existing legal immigration structure and system is dysfunctional, and not because it's broken but because it was deliberately sabotaged, very significantly in the past administration but for years before through the anti-immigration sentiments. It's really making things far more difficult now, by design
     
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  15. gator34654

    gator34654 GC Hall of Fame

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    Why not add Tucker Carlson, or Jim Jordan to your list? Why is it so hard for you to see that this president had the final say. There is so much we don't know, so many conflicting reports, but it all comes down to this guy is in charge. Not Trump. Not Cruz. Your president decided and gave the go ahead as to when and how to leave. You simply don't reduce the troop size until you complete the objective of getting our people out and equipment out first.
     
  16. HallGator

    HallGator Senile Administrator Moderator VIP Member

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    I would just like to interject my thoughts as far as blame goes. I don't blame either DT or Biden for this mess. Maybe it could have been handled differently but either one of them was going to catch hell when it started.

    What we need to do is find the best solution and stay the course. Also, keeping in mind this is a volatile situation and the solution will follow that path.
     
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  17. duchen

    duchen VIP Member

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    Not without starting a shooting war. Once we stopped withdrawing or added troops for these purposes the Taliban would have attacked a weakened force. This is what Trump meant by “tying Biden’s hands.” We had extremely limited capability because of the troop withdrawals that had taken place before he took office. Again, answer the questions about what would have happened if we did what you say. How would the troops there have defended themselves given their strength and the limitations? You say the air base could have been easily defended. That is your opinion. Please explain how.
     
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  18. vaxcardinal

    vaxcardinal GC Hall of Fame

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    What would have happened? We’d not be in a position of trying to figure out how to get our citizens and partners out. It would not have been that difficult to neutralize the taliban in order to enable us to exit on our terms. What are you’re opinions based off of? TV pundits or actual commanders and forces in the field who you’ve spoke with?
     
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  19. gator34654

    gator34654 GC Hall of Fame

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    "I don't blame either DT or JB" Hall, one of the major problems is we rarely hold people accountable; not bad generals, not bad advisors, not bad journalist, not bad politicians, not bad school teachers. About the only group we do hold accountable these days is the police (the vast majority are really good). By not holding people accountable we enable bad behavior to continue.
    Our society has become so polarized that so much of us have become pawns of the politicians and media. One group follows the likes of CNN, another group Fox News, and we all dig in our heals as what we perceive to be right. We are divided by race, by income, by gender, by mask/no mask, vaccine/no vaccine, by politics that we are blind to how this is tearing this nation apart.
     
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  20. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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