Barack Obama’s former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Ret. Admiral Michael Mullen spoke out this week to admit that the United States should have gotten out of Afghanistan sooner.
“Think, in retrospect, yes, we should have. I don’t think it was possible for us to just abruptly walk away right after we killed bin Laden,” Mullen said, referring to removing troops from Afghanistan sooner. “But, clearly, we could have gone earlier than we did.”
“As I look back and — and a lot of people are critical of the president right now, President Biden had it right back then,” he added, according to The Hill. “He was focused singly on counterterrorism. His advice was along those lines. And he certainly said that. And I give him credit for that.”
Mullen went on to say that the United States should have learned from the withdrawal of troops form Saigon during the Vietnam War.
“I think we need to examine in the military that that can-do spirit and — and that can we understand why we too often say yes to a mission when we should say no,” Mullen said. “Nobody wants the Saigon image and, obviously, we ended up with another Saigon image that will last permanently, quite frankly, whether we like it or not.”
Biden has been widely panned by both sides of the aisle for his handling of the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. This comes days after former President Donald Trump lashed out at Biden over the Afghanistan situation.
“First you bring out all of the American citizens,” Trump said. “Then you bring out ALL equipment. Then you bomb the bases into smithereens. AND THEN YOU BRING OUT THE MILITARY. You don’t do it in reverse order like Biden and our woke Generals did.”
“Leaving Americans behind for death is an unforgivable dereliction of duty, which will go down in infamy,” he later added.
Despite criticisms from Democrats and Republicans alike, Biden has continued to stand by his actions. It remains to be seen how this will impact his image moving forward.