House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said Sunday that Congress needs to investigate the Biden administration’s handling of the U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan, as the country’s president fled, the Taliban took over and thousands of U.S. troops moved to help with evacuations.
The California lawmaker told Punchbowl News that he’ll push for investigations into Biden's handling of the withdrawal. McCarthy also told the news outlet that he wants to see the intelligence assessment that led to Biden bringing home U.S. troops, amid reports that a Taliban takeover appeared inevitable after U.S. forces left Afghanistan this summer after 20 years.
Another reported concern for McCarthy, who is asking for an investigation in a Congress controlled by Democrats, is how the Afghan army dissolved so quickly after two decades of American-sponsored training.
He spoke after a classified briefing Sunday on the matter with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley.
McCarthy is an ally of former President Donald Trump, who in February 2020 reached a conditional peace agreement with the Taliban in which the U.S. agreed to drawl down troops in Afghanistan if the Taliban agreed to not support terrorist groups.
He said Biden shouldn't have been "so public" about the departure date of U.S. forces, shouldn’t have drawn down U.S. forces during the summer, when the Taliban is most powerful, and that U.S. forces should have destroyed their military equipment upon withdrawal so the Taliban couldn't use it, Punchbowl also reports.