Pete Riehm
Biden’s Saigon
By Pete Riehm
August 16, 2021

Obama Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is vindicated again on one of his most controversial statements about Joe Biden from his 2014 memoir when he wrote: “I think he's been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades." Gate’s streak is unbroken. In just the first half year of Biden’s administration, Biden has been wrong about the border, the Iranian Nuclear Deal, Russian ransom cyber hacking, and now in his most glaring error – Biden has totally bungled the withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Just a few weeks ago, Biden swore to the nation that we were not abandoning Afghanistan, the embassy would be secure, and the Afghani government would stand; he even incredibly invoked the iconic scenes from the 1975 evacuation of Saigon. He claimed we would not see helicopters evacuating people from the roof of the embassy, but just six weeks later, what did we see? Chaos at the airports and helicopters evacuating people from rooftops. It must be some kind of super power to be that blatantly, consistently wrong.

Biden started a clumsy haphazard military withdrawal that immediately saw the Taliban sweeping across Afghanistan and consolidating territory. Biden and his generals realized their blunder too late when he ordered 3,000 troops back to Kabul. By that time, the Taliban was already at the gates; the Afghani government fled the country and we barely got our embassy evacuated. Afghanistan was lost in a flash.

The Quixotic quest to rebuild and reform Afghanistan as a democratic republic has been an obvious fool’s errand for years, but the core objective remained to deny radical Islamic Jihadists a base for terrorism. That genuine and important national security goal is now lost. Just like Obama’s premature withdrawal from Iraq that spawned a ferocious resurgence of ISIS, Al Qaeda is poised to return to Afghanistan and resume exporting their murderous terrorism with a vicious vengeance.

Twenty years of American blood and treasure expended in Afghanistan came to naught in just a few days. What a pathetic, utter waste! How unfair to every military service member who served in Afghanistan, and particularly those maimed and killed. Biden blithely gave up their sacrifices with his abject incompetence and almost indifference, but Biden was ill-served by his politically correct inept generals and corrupt intelligence agencies.

Every grunt who ever served on the ground in Afghanistan knew this would happen, but the intelligence officers, flag officers, and the Commander-in-Chief had NO clue! Instead of focusing on our very real global enemies, our military leadership has been concentrating on us! They have been obsessed with rooting out completely fabricated white supremacy from the American ranks! The moronic Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, wants to understand “white rage,” but neglected understanding the Taliban. That charlatan, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, has spent all his energy chasing nonexistent American extremists while completely ignoring radical Islamic terrorists.

American diplomats and military leadership failed miserably, but the culpability of this catastrophic fiasco lies solely at the feet of our imbecilic Commander-in-Chief – it’s his team that totally screwed up Afghanistan and threw away two decades of American investment. Biden and his folks are so woke and divorced from reality that their last stand in Afghanistan was flying the LGBTQ rainbow flag at the embassy for pride month. They are so consumed with progressive propaganda they cannot recognize the very real threats to American security.

The rout in Kabul is an awful military humiliation and the worst defeat since the fall of Saigon when Democrats denied President Gerald Ford funding for an orderly withdrawal, but the blame rests squarely with the generals and Biden. As always, the troops served admirably and achieved every tactical goal. It is not their fault the objectives and strategies were hopelessly flawed.

Our all-volunteer force serves selflessly for the security of this nation. Their courage, service, and sacrifices should never be squandered with half-baked strategies or for frivolous political posturing. Our troops deserve better. If we ask them to possibly sacrifice life and limb, they deserve only the most competent leadership with impeccable integrity. They are certainly not getting that and Biden is clearly incapable of delivering it.

Biden’s policies are collapsing our economy and shredding our social fabric, but with seemingly little effort, he quickly gave America a historic military debacle and brought back all the bitterness and shame of our defeat in Vietnam. Our troops deserve a competent Commander-in-Chief and Americans deserve a real president.

“If a ruler listens to falsehood, all his officials will be wicked” (Proverbs 29:12).

Pete Riehm is the host of Common Sense Radio heard 8 pm every Thursday on FMTalk106.5 or streaming at Email him at or on MEWE @PeteRiehm or read all his columns at

© Pete Riehm


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Pete Riehm

Born to German immigrants, Pete Riehm grew up in Texas as a first generation American. Working his way through college, he enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve. After graduating from the University of Houston, Pete was commissioned into the United States Navy through Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island. He also earned a Master's Degree in National Security from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas... (more)


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