Pete Riehm
Losing Afghanistan and America
By Pete Riehm
August 30, 2021

The diplomatic and military failures in Afghanistan have been acutely aggravating, but the horrific images of hundreds of mangled bodies after a suicide bomber detonated himself at the Kabul Airport were painfully heartbreaking. Then Americans were shocked and infuriated to learn that 13 brave American military service members were among the dead. Americans dying in harm’s way is a sad reality, but when we senselessly sacrifice our young men and women due to bad decisions, half-baked strategies, and sheer incompetence, it’s a shameful travesty. However, when there is no accuracy about the events and then no accountability for the failures, that’s unacceptable and unconscionable.

Americans are saturated with information, but they are suffering a dearth of truth. Whether the border, COVID, crime, economics, elections, military operations and just about everything else, our federal government refuses to provide accurate assessments and all too often actually lies to its citizens. The Afghanistan fiasco has exposed the government tendency to dishonesty and Biden’s bald faced lies to bury his bungling, but it also highlighted the media’s complicity to cover up Democrat incompetence and malfeasance.

Afghanistan has always been dangerous, but it was relatively stable the past couple years. Twenty years is a very long military operation, but the mission was to preempt or prevent the export of terrorism and we have been overall successful. It was not really open war, but American military presence to deter further aggression. The US military is STILL in Germany, Japan, and South Korea over half a century later to deter enemies and foster stability. Obama and Trump both wanted to leave, but they knew the cost and lingering necessity of the main mission. Biden abandoned the mission and declared the mission was simply to leave so he could celebrate the Twentieth Anniversary of 9/11 as the hero who brought our troops home. But he is the buffoon that stranded Americans behind enemy lines and squandered American credibility.

Despite brazen shameful declarations of success by the Biden White House, the overwhelming evidence shows the retreat from Kabul is an unmitigated disaster. The planning and execution of this withdrawal was so illogical and unfeasible as to be criminal. Not only has our military been hobbled and hidden behind the airport gates, they have also inexplicably been constrained from helping all manner of volunteers trying to extract Americans and Afghan allies. Americans are witnessing the worst failures in leadership in our lifetimes, but incredibly no one will be held accountable for this catastrophe. To the contrary, the Biden White House is congratulating itself for the largest airlift in history. BUNK!

Just ten days after the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, both Admiral Husband E. Kimmel and General Walter Short were relieved of their duties for failing to properly prepare to defend Pearl Harbor despite numerous warnings. They were both further investigated for dereliction of duty. Their treatment may seem harsh, but the consequences of military failure are gravely serious. National security is endangered and people are killed.

Sadly and repulsively, the Biden Administration and our modern military leadership have traded the vitally necessary uncompromising standards for the profession of arms for the expedient malleable tactics of propaganda to preserve their political hides. In World War Two, our standards were unforgiving because life and liberty were at risk and the price in blood and treasure was extremely high. Today our officials gamble with our blood and treasure to win the next election; it’s a callous obscene exercise of power for purely partisan purposes. Disgusting!

Biden is losing Afghanistan because he simply wanted the political optics of leaving Afghanistan to boost his sagging poll numbers and burnish his faltering tainted image. But we are also losing America. Biden has thrown away our credibility and already lost any confidence, but Americans have lost trust in their government and now even question if America can recover.

American principles and values are timeless and our republic is resilient, but without accountability for those who have failed either by ineptitude or duplicity, the USA cannot recover. For over a decade, the United States has been racked with numerous scandals from Fast and Furious to the Russia Hoax and no one has been punished. We need a free and fair press to root out the truth and expose the lies, so Americans can have confidence in the facts. But we absolutely need leadership with moral courage and impeccable integrity to hold themselves to the highest standards.

We will probably lose Afghanistan, but unless we hold those responsible accountable and fire the flag officers and cabinet members culpable for this debacle, we risk losing America. The stakes for our republic and our posterity could not be higher. If Biden had a shred of decency and any love of country left, he would resign! That would be honorable, but Americans should not hold their breath. Congress must act! And the people must demand it!

“So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Romans 14:12).

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


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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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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