Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Sunday pushed back on former President Trump’s support for removing all troops from Afghanistan, writing on Twitter that he “could not disagree more with former President Trump regarding his support for President Biden’s withdrawal of all forces from Afghanistan against sound military advice,” The Hill writes.
Earlier on Sunday, Trump released a statement criticizing Biden’s goal for all troops to be pulled out of Afghanistan by Sept. 11, but saying that “Getting out of Afghanistan is a wonderful and positive thing to do.”
In a series of tweets on Sunday evening, Graham, who previously denounced Biden’s plan to pull all troops out of Afghanistan, wrote “With all due respect to former President Trump, there is nothing ‘wonderful’ or ‘positive’ about allowing safe havens and sanctuary for terrorists to reemerge in Afghanistan or see Afghanistan be drawn back into another civil war.”
Graham casted doubt on the Taliban’s ability to police al-Qaeda and ISIS, which he said is a key provision in the deal to withdraw troops.
“The intelligence regarding withdrawal is ominous for U.S. interests and no one believes the Taliban can be trusted to police al-Qaeda and ISIS as envisioned by the Biden-Trump plan,” Graham wrote.
He continued, address both Biden and Trump as “General,” and expressing his fear that “over time Afghanistan will become worse.”
“We will see if ‘General’ Biden and ‘General’ Trump’s withdrawal strategy turns out to be sound national security policy,” Graham wrote.
“For the sake of our nation, the people of Afghanistan, and the entire region I hope President Biden and former President Trump are proven right and our military and intelligence communities are proven wrong. However, I very seriously doubt it as I have seen this movie in Iraq and I fear that over time Afghanistan will become worse. It is important history judge those who make these decisions fairly but firmly,” he added.
On Tuesday, one day before Biden formally laid out his plan to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, Graham blasted the move, writing in a statement “A full withdrawal from Afghanistan is dumber than dirt and devilishly dangerous. President Biden will have, in essence, cancelled an insurance policy against another 9/11.”
Biden on Wednesday formally unveiled his plan to pull troops out of Afghanistan and end America’s longest war by Sept. 11, which pushed back Trump’s initial May 1 deadline. The first target date was set in an agreement with the Taliban signed last year by the Trump administration.
In a speech delivered in the Treaty Room of the White House, where former President George W. Bush announced the start of the war, Biden said “War in Afghanistan was never meant to be a multigenerational undertaking,” adding “It’s time to end the forever war.”