Briefing presentation begins at 17 minutes into the video – WaPo forgot to trim the front off
Pentagon’s top officials deliver remarks on Afghanistan
from the Washington Post
[ Editor’s Note: This briefing is a keeper. I have saved the link, as it is a rare to have two men who had commanded US troops there and have seen the combat side up close and personal, and then held full command at the top to deliver its epilogue.
They had prepared statements but answered media questions at the end, also worth watching. Fox and OAN did not seem to be there… banned maybe from the Pentagon?
I don’t ever remember seeing a briefing like this in my lifetime, and hopefully will not have to again. A few quick stats.
On the day of the bombing, and despite it, 89 flights went out during that 24 hour period, evacuating 12,500.
Total US extraction sorties were 387 in C-17s and C-130s. Non-US (mostly NATO) flights were 391.
All told 124,344 people flew out, a hell of an accomplishment under the circumstances.
My gut feeling is they were happy it was over and the bleeding had stopped. And they were quite frank about doing a complete evaluation of the evacuation to see what lessons can be saved for the future.
We are going to hear more about the folly of morphing an anti-terror war into a nation building project that was a gold mine for the grifters. There was no foundation to build it on, and Afghanistan had a long history of knowing how to deal with foreign invaders… never ending war.
They also welcomed a review of the whole war from this ending vantage point. If I had been there, I would have asked about the Inspector General’s final Report on the war, which was devastating.
Few will bother to read such things. It is not cheerful reading. The precursor report in March 2016, the WaPo published in sections, which are downloadable. They also are a treasure, numerous interviews that were transcribed and some taped.
WaPo got 2000 pages and the audio tapes. I am not sure if they included links to all of it. I have no memory of there having been anything like this after Vietnam, but that conflict did produce a mountain of books… Jim W. Dean ]
First aired … September 01, 2021
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Gen. Mark A. Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, hold a briefing on the end of the military mission in Afghanistan.
Jim W. Dean Archives 2009-2014