On Tuesday, the military’s top brass contradicted President Biden over the best course of action regarding the military withdrawal from Afghanistan. During their testimony, Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, and Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, each acknowledged they agreed with the recommendation of Army Gen. Austin “Scott” Miller that 2,500 troops be left in the country, some Biden said he was never recommended.
The Hill reports:
“I won’t share my personal recommendation to the president, but I will give you my honest opinion, and my honest opinion and view shaped my recommendation. I recommended that we maintain 2,500 troops in Afghanistan. And I also recommended earlier in the fall of 2020, that we maintain 4,500 at that time. Those are my personal views,” McKenzie told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday under questioning from Sen. James Inhofe (Okla.), the panel’s top Republican.
McKenzie said it had been his view that the full U.S. withdrawal would lead to the collapse of Afghan forces and government.
Milley said he agreed with that assessment, saying it was his personal view dating back to last fall that the U.S. should maintain at least 2,500 troops in Afghanistan to move toward a peace agreement between the Taliban and Afghan government. Milley declined to comment directly on his specific discussions with Biden when questioned by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.).
Asked whether Miller discussed his recommendation with Biden, McKenzie told lawmakers he believed his opinion “was well heard.”
In a previous interview with ABC News’ George Stephanapolous, President Biden claimed his military advisers never recommended leaving a small military presence in the country.
“No one said that to me that I can recall,” Biden replied to Stephanapolous.
Biden hears what he wants to hear. If he doesn’t hear what he wants to do, he does what he wants and then says everyone agreed or they never told him or he doesn’t remember.