Secretary of State Antony Blinken was urged by at least three Congressmen on the House Foreign Affairs Committee to resign on Monday as he testified on the disastrous withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan last month.
The botched withdrawal resulted in a still-unknown number of Americans being left behind, and a terrorist attack that killed 13 American service members.
Republicans on the committee did not hold back as they blasted Blinken, who has faced calls to resign and to be impeached.
Just Getting Started
Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) blamed Blinken and the Biden administration for allowing the Taliban to retake control of the country and “turn it into a safe haven for murderous terrorists.”
Wilson was just warming up, saying that America is at greater risk for attack than ever before.
“In American history, American families have never been at a greater risk of attack at home than today. The global war on terrorism is not over, it has been moved from abroad to American homes. As the grateful father of an Afghanistan veteran, I especially see your actions as indefensible.”
Wilson added, “Your bizarre abandoning of Bagram Airfield led directly to 13 Marines murdered at Kabul. You should resign.”
Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) also took Blinken to task for the bungled situation in Afghanistan and urged him to step down.
“We have an administration that does not know how to confront an adversary, understanding that they do not respect weakness, they only respect strength. And it is so greatly unfortunate, the consequences, and I believe that you, sir, should resign. That would be leadership.”
Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN) also urged Blinken to resign.
Taking The Heat
Antony Blinken’s tough week isn’t over yet.
Today, he faced a second day of questioning, from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, proving he isn’t immune to Democrat anger over the botched withdrawal.
Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) was blunt and to the point about other administration officials, such as Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin for refusing to voluntarily testify. He has threatened to subpoena those who have not come before the committee.
Menendez stated to Sec. Blinken, “Mr. Secretary, the execution of the U.S. withdrawal was clearly and fatally flawed.” He also assured there would be accountability to 20 years of administrations of both parties who he said “lied” about the stability of the Afghan government.
Blinken lauded Joe Biden for ending the Afghan war as “righteous,” and the evacuation as “extraordinary.” He has also stated that there are roughly 100 U.S. citizens and thousands of green card holders that could remain in Afghanistan.
If All Else Fails, Blame Trump
Sec. Blinken tried to place blame on the Trump administration, saying to the committee, “We inherited a deadline. We did not inherit a plan.”
Blinken also spoke to claims that Biden ignored intelligence reports, stating that the outcome in Afghanistan was one that “no one predicted.” That claim has also been disputed. Weeks before the fall of the Afghan government, CIA reports began warning of the exact scenario that took place.
Whether the Democrat-controlled Congress will actually hold Blinken accountable remains to be seen.