After Afghanistan, is Iraq next?

After Afghanistan, is Iraq next?

[Music] as the fallout continues in afghanistan a barrage of refugees spilling into the kabul airfields for now but it’s not long before numbers pour across the borders into neighboring countries the world watching as the botched withdrawal mounts chaos for both the u.s and its allies with some now concerned that the same could happen to iraq meanwhile former president trump cabinet members chiming in on afghanistan rebuking president biden’s assertion that it was his predecessor who put the u.s in this situation so joining us to discuss the regional challenges ahead we’ll go to our panel today former uk mp george galloway and former pentagon official mike malouf now gentlemen the comment raising eyebrows here trump’s acting sex death chris miller says donald trump never intended to actually withdraw u.s troops that privately the strategy among his top national security officials was to use this rhetoric as a ruse to draw the taliban to the negotiating table for a power sharing agreement and that he planned on ousting ashraf ghani and installing a new president trump has not publicly confirmed this assertion mike your reaction to that claim by chris miller i’ve heard the same thing trump conditioned withdrawal on a number of factors of taliban behavior and he’s made that very very clear and also ghani is a weak guy i mean he’s an academic probably very smart but he he lacks leadership and trump saw that and trump that’s one thing that trump really looked for in leaders such as putin and and and others was strength as a leader and gani did not display that so it’s not surprising uh i think to this day we still would have troops in uh afghanistan if if trump were in office troop withdrawal was conditioned and i’m sure that uh he would have not allowed uh tens of billions of dollars of equipment to lie around to get in the taliban hands which could alter the balance of power in that region frankly and george what do you think about that do you think that was trump’s plan all along but he kind of left it there because he didn’t win re-election it sounds uh credible to me and uh sounds in keeping with what we know about his character as mike just explained he must have seen immediately through ashraf ghani the man was smart maybe smart enough to make off with 169 million dollars in cash at least but definitely weak nobody’s idea of a leader as i said to you the other day since president karzai afghanistan has been essentially leaderless so it sounds credible whether it would have altered the eventual outcome must be more in doubt 2500 american soldiers either in afghanistan or in iraq is not sufficient to alter the course of events in my view the taliban were always going to take over the only question was when and george staying with you on this the the u.s and nato allies do still have a presence in iraq despite the iraqi government passing a resolution in their parliament demanding all foreign troops go given what we’ve just witnessed in afghanistan should foreign troops oblige they must oblige if they invaded and occupied iraq to introduce democracy as that’s what they said they did then the democratic voice has spoken long ago in iraq and for the reasons i just mentioned but additional ones the 2500 american forces still in iraq are not sufficient to alter the outcome of events but actually the uh people who are there in the iraqi security forces and particularly in the militia auxiliaries of those security forces are more than capable of taking care of isis and al-qaeda themselves but politically we are doing no good in iraq and we may indeed be putting our people at risk of great harm because if the security forces are moved any point to remove our people remove our bases then that will be a very bloody mess indeed mike what’s your take on that i mean there are concerns that iraqi troops could fall to isis as you know they scrambled to reform their terror organization we actually saw a similar situation actually happen in iraq back in 2014 when isis conquered a third of the country as you may recall as iraqi forces literally ran away are iraqi troops comparable to the afghan forces who just did the same thing i think as long as you have political support and you’ve got good air support from the united states you’re going to have the end training you’re going to have the the iraqi forces will be viable uh and they but they need to continue the training that’s what happened after we pulled out in 211 or 2011 rather i’m sorry 2011 uh all that training and and and uh uh assistance went away and as a consequence as you point out in 2 2014 isis moved in almost un unimpeded and took over mosul and that was the beginning of the caliphate so this could happen again easily now one thing that exists today that didn’t exist back then is the fact that you have these popular mobilization forces inside iraq and that those are shia and they are a former formidable force at this point and they could stand up to isis and they are part of the iraqi uh security forces i would like i would envision that u.s will will remain provide training that seems to be acceptable to the to the popular mobilization forces even though they all want us out maybe as combat forces and that that i understand but certainly keep the training and and logistical and intelligence support there because isis is on the move again george same question to you except with the uk forces the uk forces are following suit with whatever the us does will this happen in iraq yes for sure the uk as i have said before goes around the world threatening people with america’s army if america’s army is not available it’s been recalled then the british presence is non-viable non-functional i don’t believe that the two countries which more than any other britain and the united states destroyed iraq changed it forever will ever be acceptable to the popular mobilization forces or to the regional ally of iraq namely iran ineluctably in breaking the power of arab iraq we have made persian power in that region insurmountable and they want us to go and go we should and gentlemen lastly this week we heard the secretary of defense lloyd austin say u.s troops will remain as long as they need until every american is brought home from afghanistan the taliban says you gotta go by september 11 which is fast approaching from what we can tell so far the rescue of americans said to be in the tens of thousands still does not seem feasible mike your last word on that i think that the united states has no choice but to remain and work try to negotiate something with taliban to get americans out look this was this was a disaster we should never have uh let troops out while we still had americans on the ground and given that very pathetic news conference the other day by us by lloyd austin and general milley i think if those two want to salvage anything in their very long esteemed career they need to resign all right george i’ll give you the last word here well i i think this has been an amazing fiasco as mike just said why would you withdraw forces whilst tens of thousands of your nationals are still there and in the hands of the taliban this has been a cataclysmic blow to american prestige around the world and lots of people currently sheltering under american protection and patronage will be regretting it now they’ll be worrying whether the same thing is going to happen to them negotiate with the taliban an extension if you can to get your people out it’s certainly not viable that thousands of westerners could be left in the hands of the taliban no politician certainly not joe biden could survive that yeah that 9 11 deadline coming up real fast george galloway mike malouf thank you both for weighing in thank you you
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After Afghanistan, is Iraq next?

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