Republican congressman accuses US government of being caught off guard by swift collapse of Afghanistan

Republican Congressman, Darrell Issa, has accused the US government of being caught off guard by the swift collapse of Afghanistan in 2021.

Darrell Issa, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, who has seen the classified document, known as dissent cable, called its content “embarrassing”.

The “dissent channel” within the State Department serves as a platform for officials to express contrary views. The cable, signed by 23 staffers and diplomats, had warned about the possibility of a rapid Taliban advance as the U.S. withdrew from the country, a concern downplayed by President Biden and other top officials at the time.

The US government granted access to members of congress after extensive pressures.

“What we saw was their prediction, with great accuracy, of exactly what was going to happen and what the outcome would be if they did not change their directions,” Issa told Fox News.

Issa further revealed a response from the State Department acknowledging the concerns but ultimately failing to take sufficient action. The cable also highlighted that the State Department did not expect sustainability in the region and was aware that US military equipment left behind would fall into the hands of the Taliban.

Issa emphasised that the cable, sent on July 13, 2021, accurately predicted the quick collapse of the Afghan army, with Kabul falling weeks later on August 15.

The Biden administration has faced widespread criticism for its decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, which led to the Taliban’s rapid takeover of the country.

Despite acknowledging that the intelligence did not indicate a quick collapse of the Afghan government, President Biden has repeatedly defended his decision.