Monday, August 16, 2021
Congressman Raul Grijalva (D-AZ03) reacted today to the Taliban seizing power in Afghanistan following the fall of Kabul:
Twenty years of war, billions of dollars spent, and the policies of four different presidential administrations have utterly failed the Afghan people. It is abundantly clear today that a hyperfocus on military might with negligible diplomatic efforts left the Afghan military unable to defend itself and nascent democratic institutions too fragile to survive the Taliban insurgency. While Trump campaigned on ending our longest war, he never did and the status quo of keeping our service members in danger and away from their families with no clear mission has gone on for too long. Military contractors reaped billions in profits, and it's the Afghan people, particularly women and young girls, who will pay the price.
Those who helped American forces and diplomats must not be left behind. We must undertake every effort to get them out of the country as quickly as possible, fast-track their visas, and open our borders to Afghan refugees. We must keep our promise to them. We must reinvent diplomacy in this region with partners that are in a position to help the Afghan people - it is abundantly clear that a military solution does not exist.