Fall of Afghanistan prompts heated debate

4 The Record

No immediate answers why Afghan military barely put up a fight

Images from Afghanistan this week are reminiscent of the end of the Vietnam War.

Afghanistan reverts to Taliban control, a regime that once gave safe harbor to Osama bin Laden.

No American, Democrat or Republican is happy about what’s going on in Afghanistan.

The failed state instantly became a political weapon, giving way to grandstanding and a form of Monday morning quarterbacking to borrow a phrase.

We spent our entire panel discussion on that issue in this week’s 4 The Record with Iowa Republican Party Chair Jeff Kaufmann and former Scott County Democratic Party Chair Karl Rhomberg.

I want to start by pointing out I brought up this possibility a month ago with a different panel.

At the time the Taliban already moved in on Kunduz province.

It seemed clear their intent was to take over upon a U.S. withdrawal.

I posed the likelihood that Afghanistan would fall into Taliban control.

The Democrat and Republican I had on that day agreed it was time for the U.S. to leave and let the Afghan people govern themselves.

Democrats and Republicans over 20 years have a big hand of where we are today regarding Afghanistan.

Kaufmann and Rhomberg discussed if the United States can afford to allow this to be the outcome for Afghanistan.

We as Americans take pride in our sense of nationalism.

For almost 250 years now, our military men and women are willing to die for this country — and have died for this country.

Our military spent 20 years training and building the Afghan army and when it came time to defend the country, the Afghans collapsed like a house of cards.

Some laid down their weapons without ever firing a shot.

Rhomberg and Kaufmann addressed what case is to be made to keep defending Afghanistan when the Afghan people won’t defend themselves.

Question of the week

Local 4 News, your local election headquarters, is proud to present 4 The Record, a weekly news and public affairs program focused on the issues important to you.  It’s a program unlike any other here in the Quad Cities. Tune in each Sunday at 10:30 a.m. as Jim Niedelman brings you up to speed on what’s happening in the political arena, from Springfield, Des Moines, Washington, D.C. and right here at home.

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