On Wednesday’s “Late Night,” Seth Meyers criticized the media’s reliance on asking the architects of the disastrous War on Terror for context in the withdrawal from Afghanistan. It’s time we stop listening to what John Bolton thinks, you know? Listening to him is what got us here in the first place.
Meyers talked about the Afghanistan Papers that the Washington Post reported on in 2019, which showed that government leaders never really had any idea what they were doing in Afghanistan and knew that they had failed in stabilizing the country, but the military-industrial complex kept America from withdrawing. People who were making money from the war said they could fix the problems if they just had more time.
“And that’s how ‘forever wars’ happen: People in charge just keep asking for a little more time to turn things around and then, next thing you know, it’s been 20 years and you’ve been in Afghanistan longer than it takes for George R.R. Martin to come up with a new ‘Game of Thrones’ book,” Meyers joked.
Meyers said that none of President Joe Biden’s predecessors wanted to take responsibility for pulling out of Afghanistan, because they knew it would be a disaster. Which is not to say that Biden hasn’t botched the withdrawal. He has. But Republicans are acting like it’s all Biden’s fault, when George W. Bush got us into Afghanistan in the first place. “For God’s sake, Karl Rove of all people has been on Fox News opining without any shame at all about how Joe Biden supposedly messed up in Afghanistan.” Rove, one of the architects of the Iraq War, thinks we should stay in Afghanistan.
“Maybe next time we can ask the dudes at Sturgis for some tips on Covid protection and noise reduction,” Meyers cracked.
It wasn’t just Fox News talking to people whose opinions should be ignored. CNN interviewed John Bolton, Trump’s former National Security Advisor who has supported or been actively involved in numerous foreign policy failures over the past two decades. Meyers questioned why CNN had him on and not someone like Rep. Barbara Lee, who bravely voted against the authorization of the use of force in Afghanistan in 2001, the only congressperson to do so.
And the Wall Street Journal published an op-ed by Mike Pence criticizing Biden’s handling of the withdrawal. Meyers said it was full of lies, and pointed out that if you want to know about Pence’s credibility, you can look at the last Wall Street Journal op-ed he wrote, which ran in June 2020 and was called “There Isn’t a Coronavirus ‘Second Wave.’”
“Nailed it, Mike!” Meyers said. “Can’t wait to read that article through glasses that are fogged up from my two masks while I’m waiting on line for my Delta booster shot.”
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