Liars, Shadow Governments, and Afghanistan
Update: Here’s the Wall Street Journal carrying more water for the CIA (see note at end for another example). According to the “leaked” documents and the breathless reporting, the CIA was mostly correct about the collapse of Afghanistan and the White House knew that Afghanistan would collapse once troops were withdrawn. White House: under bus.
Less than six weeks after the U.S. exited Afghanistan, the Afghan capital of Kabul fell to the hirsute homeless frustrated homosexuals known as the Taliban who’ve been raging across the countryside looking for their long-lost shopping cart full old blankets and cardboard bits and a Microsoft Zune they found in a ditch behind the Walmart. President Biden claimed that the Afghan government had 300,000 soldiers, when, in reality, there was no Afghan army at all. (All the real fighting against the Taliban over the last few weeks has been conducted by regional tribal chiefs and their personal militias.) So was Biden lying to you about this 300,000-troop Afghan army that never existed? Or did someone lie to Biden?
The only real question remaining is: who’s lying to you?
Either the Biden administration was lying to you when they assured everyone — repeatedly — that the Taliban won’t get too far, too quickly, or the CIA and the State Department (which, for the record, are essentially the same entity) lied to the Biden administration about the Taliban.
Given that the Biden administration almost certainly had a “mission accomplished” speech/ceremony/hair-sniffing exhibit planned for September 11 — the twentieth anniversary of the attack — I strongly suspect that the administration actually believed it could exit before September and declare victory. Had they been informed that there was any reasonably high probability that the Taliban would push their shopping carts across the entire country in six weeks, it’s inconceivable that the Biden administration would have proceeded with the plan. Sure, politicians push unreasonable goals for optics, but they generally avoid shooting themselves in the face.
No one wants to believe that the CIA (and State Dept, and Pentagon, etc.) would lie to the president because that’s how you devolve into a banana republic. Most countries are not governed by their government; they’re governed by competing powers who recognize a cease-fire as they rape the people. (Fun fact: Afghanistan has never had a national government — ever. But Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and China are also examples of pseudo-governments that are merely cease-fire coalitions of rapists. The moment the truce breaks, the country goes to shit, fast.)
The first U.S. president to really realize that there was a cabal over the river in Virginia was Eisenhower. In his famous “Military Industrial Complex” speech, he said, “Those fuckers in Langley will lie right to your face so they can keep building their shadow government. Also, I love golf.” (Paraphrase.) Notably, Eisenhower gave this warning in his farewell speech so he wouldn’t be assassinated.
Kennedy, who never read a book in his life (including the one he supposedly wrote), learned the hard way. After the first day of the Bay of Pigs Invasion, Kennedy realized that the CIA had been lying to him. The stories of Castro’s forces repelling the invaders with advanced weaponry was entirely invented. Of course, The New York Times published a front-page story (twice, in fact) on Castro’s MiGs (Castro didn’t have MiGs), but Kennedy realized that all the CIA’s lies had an intended audience of one: the president. That’s when he called the whole thing off. (Conspiracy theorists then run with this set of facts to claim that the CIA assassinated Kennedy.)
Nixon, of course, was a paranoid freak but only because he knew too much. (Nixon was Eisenhower’s vice president and his daughter was married to Eisenhower’s grandson. Nixon, unlike Kennedy, was actually not an effete buffoon.) Nixon knew too much, so he had to be impeached. (The idea that Nixon’s downfall was the result of a CIA-State-Pentagon coup is historically supported. Most of that historical evidence had only come to light in the last twenty years. “Watergate” is the CIA’s front story.)
And so, did the Biden administration ram through a deadline that was unrealistic, or did the CIA (etc.) lie to the Biden administration? My guess is the latter. The CIA’s primary mission since the 1950s has been to strengthen its control over the government, and its primary means of doing so is to weaken the President. Witnessing the unreasonable enthusiasm the Biden administration had for a full exit before September 11, the CIA (etc.) led them right into the snare. The dumber the President looks, the better the CIA looks. (I’ve heard very well-connected people posit that Trump’s troubles and his re-election failure are entirely the work of the CIA, which is not a crazy hypothesis since the CIA has done it before.)
And for the past few months, the CIA has probably been working overtime to ensure that the Afghan disaster would get pinned on the administration and not on the Company (or its pals at State or the Pentagon). So look out for all the “Biden’s Afghan Blunder” articles in the compliant press “countered” by articles on how much Trump/Obama/Bush is to blame. Note how rarely the intelligence services are blamed. (Keep in mind that no administration has objective information about Afghanistan; all of their decisions are made from information supplied by the intelligence services.)
The public, in general, doesn’t really want to admit that the U.S. is a lot closer to Pakistan than we’d care to admit (Pakistan is run by their intelligence services and military; the civilian government is a bunch of parking-ticket-giving puppets).
And Biden is loath to say anything lest he have to give up his convertible. We all know what happens to independent Presidents who ride in convertibles.
Note: Glenn Greenwald is usually right, but he conflates two things here that he really shouldn’t. In one paragraph, he writes that “There was virtually nothing that could happen in Afghanistan without the U.S. intelligence community’s knowledge.” In the very next paragraph, he writes, “U.S. political and military leaders have been lying to the American public for two decades about the prospects for success in Afghanistan….” This may all be correct, but “U.S. intelligence” and “political and military leaders” are not the same thing. They have different motives, different agendas, and different purposes. They are often at odds. For “U.S. intelligence,” the “political and military leaders” are often useful idiots or problems to be solved. We know from history that “U.S. intelligence” lies to the president as much as they lie to anyone.
Source. The U.S. Government Lied For Two Decades About Afghanistan (Greenwald)
Note 2: Here’s Reuters helping the intelligence services control the narrative and pin the blame on Biden.
Note 3: It’s remarkable that anyone takes this at face value. Nearly every government around the world takes U.S. diplomats or “embassy officials” to mean CIA operatives. For most countries, embassies are just forward operating bases for their intelligence services. And this memo and its leaking is almost certainly a CIA/State insurance policy to frame the narrative (which is to frame the White House.)
A few dupes: