Kabul Bombing, Funeral
The Navy Ceremonial Guard transports the casket of Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Maxton W. Soviak, from Berlin Heights, Ohio, at a graveside service, Sept. 13, 2021. Soviak was killed August 26, 2021 during a terrorist attack at the Abbey Gate of Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan Photo credit: US Nacy / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

The GOP would be doing much better if Republicans realized that this is their job, not catering to the whims of Trump or parroting whatever Fox News hosts are aggrieved by. 

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High-ranking Republicans on Saturday used the second anniversary of a terrorist bombing in Kabul that killed 13 US servicemembers to slam President Joe Biden for his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan. They also questioned why nobody has been held to account for the events that led to the attack.

Amid the chaos that followed Biden’s announcement that American forces would be retreating from the war-torn country, thousands of Afghan civilians converged on Hamid Karzai International Airport in an effort to flee the country before the Taliban took over once again.

Taking advantage of the mayhem, a suicide bomber associated with the Islamic State killed at least 170 Afghans and 13 Americans on August 26, 2021.

Since taking control of the House at the start of this year, Republican lawmakers have been investigating the events that led up to the attack as well as its aftermath. The anniversary provided them with a welcome opportunity to draw attention to their probes and a major policy failure of the Biden administration. 

“Two years ago today, we tragically lost 13 brave servicemen and women in Afghanistan,” tweeted House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). “I have directed the flags at the US Capitol to be lowered to half-staff in honor of these American heroes.”

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, not only paid his respects to the Americans who were killed but also vowed to get to the bottom of what happened. 

“These young men and women embodied the very best of our nation — we must never forget their selfless bravery,” Rogers said.
“It is unfathomable that two years after this horrific attack no one in the Biden administration has been held accountable for the botched withdrawal that led to the deaths of 13 Americans,” he added. “I will continue to investigate the Biden administration’s handling of the Afghanistan withdrawal and seek the accountability the American people deserve.”

It was not only members of Congress who used the anniversary to hammer Biden. 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), who is a distant second to frontrunner Donald Trump in the race for the 2024 GOP nomination, tweeted out photos of the servicemembers who were lost. 

“On the two-year anniversary of the Afghanistan catastrophe at Abbey Gate, we remember the 13 American heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice. We honor them for their heroism and last full measure of devotion,” DeSantis wrote. “As President, I will fight for accountability, recognize the service and sacrifices of our servicemen and women and their families, and bring a mission first mindset to our nation’s collective defense. Never forget.”

It’s almost strange to see top Republicans focus on an actual issue instead of defending Trump, investigating Biden’s son Hunter, or pursuing whatever is the cause du jour of the right-wing universe. 

This is what the GOP should be doing all the time. 

Foreign policy was supposed to be one of Biden’s strengths, but the Afghanistan withdrawal was chaotic and actually does merit a closer look. 

This is an issue where Republicans could score legitimate points, which makes it so baffling that they always seem to get bogged down in useless nonsense because it might make their base happy. 

A great example is the response from Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), who usually only attracts any kind of attention for stupid things he says or for his decision to hold up hundreds of military nominations and promotions to force the Pentagon to change its abortion policy. 

On Saturday, he sounded like a completely reasonable US lawmaker and not a crackpot ex-football coach who somehow found himself in the Senate. 

“The withdrawal in Afghanistan was one of the biggest blunders in American military history, and to this day not a single Pentagon official or member of the Biden Administration has been held accountable,” Tuberville stated.

The GOP would be doing much better if Republicans realized that this is their job and not catering to the whims of Trump or parroting whatever Fox News hosts are aggrieved by. 


  • Klaus Marre

    Klaus Marre is a senior editor for Politics and director of the Mentor Apprentice Program at WhoWhatWhy. Follow him on Twitter @KlausMarre.

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