tv Special Report With Bret Baier FOX News August 26, 2021 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
tkpwaeud. basically you have to get your troops out on time. the president's press secretary will take additional questions after this. we will stay tune for that. thank you for being with us. god bless for our troops and the families getting a tough call today. that is it for us. "special report" is up next. >> >> bret: good evening, welcome to washington i'm bret baier. the deadliest day for troops in more than a decade. two suicide bombers detonating explosive vests they were wearing outside the kabul airport as u.s. marines and other service members were helping thousands to try to make their evacuation point. at least 12 u.s. service members killed, 15 others wounded. dozens of afghans killed and wounded in those attacks. before today, the last americans killed in combat in afghanistan
was february 8th, 2020. in president biden moment ago speaking directly to those responsible, he said it was a splintered terrorist group known as isis-k. take a listen. >> we will not forgive. we will not forget. we will hunt you down. and make you pay. >> bret: president biden saying he sort of the military to come up with plans to take out those responsible in the time and manner of america's choosing. the president saying the evacuation mission will continue at the kabul airport in the u.s. will not be deterred to continuing the evacuation of u.s. personnel, and afghan allies, so-called siv within the time frame allotted. by his self imposed august 1st deadline. the president says he believes the taliban are living up to their word about providing or trying to provide safe passage for u.s. citizens and others despite the fact that the suicide bombers got through the
taliban court on around the airport. tonight, the kabul airport and surrounding areas are on high alert once again. military officials call a steady stream of real and tactical threats, terrorist threats. we begin tonight with correspondent trey yingst with the latest. good evening. >> good evening. two blasts rock to the afghan capital killing more than 60 people including 12 u.s. service members. at the blast taking place outside the abbey gate and the baron hotel in kabul. next to the international airport. we know a number of people were injured as well, first confirmation of the incident came around 9:44 eastern time when pentagon press secretary john kirby tweeted and provided no specific detail. the state department issued an alert telling u.s. citizens to leave the area immediately. you can hear the concern in the confusion and the voices of people who witnessed the blast.
if one man talking with fox news after the experience saying this. >> i was waiting for them united states marine corps. just got on the plane and get out of here. there was an explosion that happened. a lot of people got hurt. i got a baby girl, she was five or so, she died in my hands. i don't know exactly what's going on over there. >> in the aftermath, some of the wounded were taking into the airport for treatment while others were driven to hospitals. saying on twitter that taliban condemns what happened and the americans were responsible for the area where it took place. the hours since smaller explosions were reported across kabul, the taliban said they came from american forces destroying their equipment. the united states over the past week has relied on its
relationship with the taliban to secure the perimeter of the air force following the blast and it's unclear how the biden administration will manage this. >> bret: trey yingst, thank you. let's go to white house course bonded peter doocy. the white house briefing room, good evening. just in there, we got to see your question two president biden, your thought on the news headlines out of that and what you took from your exchange? >> the president said that it's possible but he can say with any sense of certitude that american forces in afghanistan right now trying to evacuate people did share names or information about u.s. citizens and afghans try to get out with the taliban. add something that could have happened and he was asked if he personally regretted closing down the airbase. we heard from reporting that there's a lot of military pendants who should be given a backup, he says the military advisors concluded that it
didn't add much value. he also said following promises to respond with devastating forces, the taliban affected american evacuation. the same applies for isis. listen to this. >> these isis terrorists will not win. we will rescue the americans. we will get our afghan allies. outs. our mission will go on. america will not be intimidated. >> we heard that we have a two-minute warning to the press briefing, i will ask the president if he stares by his square position to pull out. >> you said the bus stops with you. do you bear any responsibility for the way that things have unfolded in the last two weeks? >> i bear responsibility
fundamentally, all that has happened. >> do you think pulling out of afghanistan? >> i think they have an issue. that people are likely to get hurt. as we have seen, gotten killed. and then it's messy. >> bret: peter, i want to get you seated for the briefing so thank you very much and will talk about the exchange with you and the president throughout the show. we will get back to the briefing as it begins. thank you very much and let's bring in fox news senior strategic analyst retire general jack keane. you've been listening all day, you heard the president react to what has happened in kabul and the way forward. your thoughts? >> well, i surely appreciate the level of compassion and personal eloquence that he expressed
about the soldiers and the families and the sacrifices made here. the whole nation feels that frankly, and that the sad, tragic, and heart-wrenching day. i contrast in my mind we saw the photos days before with troops carrying, humanitarian expression helping kids and their families. to see the horrors of the videos today in stark contrast to the other day, it's quite some thing you'll never forget. listen, we have issues here. with the strategy and the policy being formulated. we should not let go of it, even on a saturday like this. that is one establishing that we are facing. we're trying to incentivize the taliban and there have their own national interest. the best way to do that i've said from the on-site, is to tell them straight out that we are going to get all of our people out of here and we are
going to stay as long as it takes to do that and whatever resources it takes to do that. i believe once they internalize that and understand that, that could have gone either way. incentivize them certainly, i think it's what it would have done to help get us out of there. then outsourcing our security to the taliban and the network for the outer perimeter security, obviously it didn't work. we've got to fix that and fix a quick. >> bret: general, thank you very much. i want to ask you more about the taliban situation but we're going to go live to the white house. white house press secondary jen jen psaki. >> was he lowering expectations for the significant population trying to get out? >> he was conveying up a time where the taliban's taken over the country, certainly not her preference as you know well. it's not going to be possible
for every single afghan, millions potentially who want to leave afghanistan. at the same time, i think you also heard the president made clear that there is not an end to our commitment to getting american citizens out who do not want to or not ready to leave and getting partners out and those who served alongside united states for the last 20 20 years. >> taliban, there on the perimeter for the suicide bomber. beyond the speed regard. why isn't the taliban in part responsible? >> secretary psaki: i think the addressed this afternoon and it's important to repeat that we do not have any information at this point in time and that's not changed over the last couple hours to suggest the taliban had knowledge of or was engaged in
or involved in this attack. obviously what happened today and the loss of lives of u.s. service members is a tragedy, horrific, one of the worst things if not the worst thing we have experienced after president biden's time in office. we will not have any additional assessment at this point. >> reporter: just a few things to clarify, he talked about about getting people after the 31st out. is there a plan to get u.s. forces out by august 31st? >> secretary psaki: nothing is changed on that timeline. >> reporter: the president based on the comments over the last few days? to the presidency this coming? >> secretary psaki: many members of the military and the national security say that we have been closely watching and assessing the threat of isis-k. we've had increasing concerns about the threat growing over the last couple.
this is a concern we have been watching and we saw of course the tragic event happened today. >> reporter: what does today's attack say about the u.s.'s ability to keep the terror threat checked once the u.s. pulls all military support out of afghanistan? it something he talked about in july when he reiterated what the point was. it's peter you're right and i appreciate the cluster and commence a burden for people done know and understand the threats that are posed by having thousands of u.s. military on the ground currently on the ground. implementing a mission committed to a mission you heard general and the president say. that's a threat and they are a target. that's a threat and that's a target. but the ability to target individuals on the ground in afghanistan is very different from isis's ability to attack the united states and attack the homeland. we will maintain and continue over the rise in capacity with presence in partnership with
countries in the region to ensure that they do not develop that ability. >> reporter: has he seen the caskets of those killed? >> secretary psaki: i'm sure the president will do everything he can to honor the lives of the service men whose were lost today. lemme answer it to provide you an update whether he called the family members. for those who have covered this you would know the process. but for those who have not or watching at home, the process would first go through the pentagon, there is a of kin notification and i know general mckenzie spoke to it earlier today. it is a process underway at this point in time. until the process concludes, the president would not make a call because that's the first step in the process. in terms of additional steps such as dover, of course he would consider and want to be a part of any means of honoring the lives that were lost.
>> reporter: describing the explosion that happened at a point after someone had been searched by the taliban. how is united states going to work with the taliban? the president is describing the decisions and remarks to get american citizens and afghan allies out if that's what we're working with. >> secretary psaki: i'm not trying to sugarcoat what we think of the taliban. the taliban are not a group we trust, they are not our friends. if we've never that. it's the reality that the taliban controls large swaths of afghanistan.we've been able to d wait more than 104,000 people and save more than 104,000 lives and that coordinations necessary to continue with the evacuation measures. understand your question, peter,
there is no assessment we have at this point in time of their involvement in this. if that changes we will let you all know. >> reporter: do you think there's going to be reliable partners if we are already getting reports that they are not letting afghans into the airport, and the u.s. is still at the airport? >> secretary psaki: after the 31st are moving over to the next couple -- >> we've heard it's already happening. >> secretary psaki: i know also the president just said more than 7,000 people have been evacuated over the course of the last 12 hours. that's while active attacks were happening and that to got onto planes and let over 100,000 people evacuated. it's not about trust, it's not about relying on the taliban. it's an equal partner knowing and suggesting that. because they control large swells of the country, we have to coordinate with them in order to get people out and we will continue to do that.
one more thing i would say, we have an enormous amount of leverage that includes economic leverage, leverage that we will make clear to they taliban as it relates to coordination continuing to get american citizens and partners out. >> reporter: there is reports of explosions happening throughout the evening and kabul and some reports indicate it's the beginning of a process of the u.s. military beginning just don't like to destroy a comment on the ground. >> secretary psaki: we know it has to take place in advance of a departure. >> reporter: will be heard in the president articulated, continuing to facilitate the mission, the question is how can that be the case given what we saw today trying to -- does a call for reinforcements on the ground and what's the concern for the ongoing threat that isis
will take? >> secretary psaki: there is the ongoing correct in every day that our troops are on the ground, they are at risk. that's the reality. you saw the president earlier, these were attacks that we had obviously had intelligence over the last several days were rising concerns. i'll tell you as a relates to the first question like i've been sitting in the meetings as well into every single meeting the president asks the pentagon nearly every meeting before they concluded is there anything else you need to conclude your mission. do you need equipment, troops, resources. he's asked them today is a relates to completing the mission of the next coming days and going after the individual terrorists who killed service members today as well. go ahead. >> reporter: you know do you wear and some of the meetings today. it was there ever a point where the president was reconsidering the deadline of having all u.s. forces out by august 31st? >> secretary psaki: no, here's why. if the president relies on the
advice of his military commanders and they continue to believe that it's essential to get out by the 31st. that's their advice. several reasons for that, once the ongoing threat and that the second is that we've got to be able to to get individuals out who've been partners of ours after the 31st and they believe the best way to do that is to stay on the timeline at this point in time. >> reporter: a mass evacuation will end before the actual 31st? >> secretary psaki: i'm not going to into the operational timeline of when the last evacuation will be and i don't expect that brenda of defense will do that will let you know as we have is we have updated numbers. >> reporter: are there alternative plans to get these people out if it's peerless to wait outside the gates to get in? >> secretary psaki: there is are in a range of operations and operational approaches that commanders and military on the
ground have been utilizing. over the course of several days, if not more. i'm not going to underline them here but that's why they are in touch with american citizens and partners we are working to evacuate to get them safely to the airport and evacuated at the appropriate time. >> reporter: is it your opinion that the president has the authority from congress and continues operations beyond? he talked about pursuing isis-k wherever, whenever. is there expectation he'll get additional authority to do so? >> secretary psaki: i don't think there's execution of additional authority needed. report back what about military commanders on the ground? will they have to come back to conduct counterterrorism operations? >> secretary psaki: as he said a little bit ago, he could not have been more clear about the fact that he said, we will not
forget, we will not forgive. whatever they need for the plans, he's committed to delivering on. >> reporter: is not possible to do that with military troops and the military bases around afghanistan? >> secretary psaki: i would note for you as we cover the issues quite closely, we have a range of counterterrorism capacity and the number of countries around the world and we do not have military bases. i'm not going to outline what their approach should be for the military and i will leave that to them to take. i will leave that to them to outline anything on the timeline. >> reporter: any concerns about the terror threat present? each day of operation brings added risk to the troops. if the risk grows tomorrow and keeps growing the next day, how should americans feel about the operation right now for the coming days? >> secretary psaki: i would say first for general mackenzie
to make clearly that we had every intention of continuing the evacuation mission over the coming days. that they planned for incidents of these kind to the degree that they can. they have intentions to continue and the president has regular consultations every day, multiple times on days like this about how they see their circumstances on the ground. that's the expectation that this point in time that it will continue in the coming days. >> reporter: he was scheduled to get briefed at the 9:00 hour by the national security team and that's when the first report was being reported. >> secretary psaki: for people watching, color means additional detail of what he's up to. i will say, karen, that the initial report of the attacks came in as members of the national security team are gathering in the situation room
for a regular meeting with the president. they were just gathering in sitting down and gathering in the rooms of those initial reports came in at that time. as the president arrived in the situation room, one of the first updates he received of course was about the attacks on the ground in kabul. this was a developing situation as it has been throughout the course of the day and throughout the course of his breathing with the national security team this morning, the commanders on the ground, and the region of regulr updates as they learned more and more information. once they left of the information room, they continued over the course of the day. he's been in constant contact with the military commanders both here and in the region throughout the course of the day receiving updates on what's happening on the ground. >> reporter: the second meeting of the national security team present there? >> secretary psaki: this was
regular ongoing contact with members of the national security team throughout the course of the day. reporter mike you said you were with him how is he? how has he been dealing with the incoming information how was he asking the questions of military commanders? >> secretary psaki: anybody who has watched the president up close which is most of you know that the putting the lives of servicemen and women at risk and those decisions that you have to make as commander in chief weigh heavily on him. as i noted a few minutes ago, and a day where you lose service members is maybe the worst day of your presidency. hopefully there is not more but we are certainly early in the presidency at this point in tim. i would say that he is somber and as he said today, outraged at these terrorists taking the lives of service members. he wanted to make clear to the public, he wanted to have all the information that he could before he spoke to the american
people so he can convey exactly what he knew at the appointed time time where he addresses the public. he has wanted very detailed updates of exactly what we know about what's happening on the ground and that's why he's been in constant contact with members of the national security team. >> reporter: and can you you and from the report that it's 13 service members who have died? >> secretary psaki: i would leave that to the national security team. >> reporter: talking about the active threats, how would you sum up right now the level of confidence? there won't be another attack like this before the completion of the evacuation? >> secretary psaki: i can't give you the assessment, but as i think the national security team has said, members of the national security team these are ongoing threats. we are watching them closely. i cannot give you the assessment from here. >> reporter: can you speak to what the impact has been?
the flights, the impact from coalition partners. does it restrict the bandwidth you've thought you'd have in the next five days? fewer americans than afghan allies that can get out. >> secretary psaki: is a good question and one of the reasons we put out the number is because we want you all to have an understanding of how many people were able to get out. i would note that more than 7,000 people were evacuated over the last 12 hours. if those include members of coalition partners and we are working now one of the peace that the president's been focused on is getting as many people out and onto the plains as possible even as we are working to address the security threats on the ground. i do not want to give your prediction because the u.s. military is incredible and they are working even while they are facing the security threats to continue the evacuation mission. >> reporter: can americans and
should americans go, are they getting through the taliban checkpoint to the airport and? are you discouraging them from doing that? what's the situation on the ground in that department? >> secretary psaki: i would say we are given specific directions to individuals, american citizens and others on when they should come to the airport, when they should meet, how they should come to the airport and were not going to outline the details here or any public manner. but that certainly the direction we would be giving people to pay attention to the security alerts and to pay attention to notifications and contact that they are receiving from officer coalition partners. >> reporter: other warnings that it's an evacuation et cetera. it can you speak about whether this was specifically planned or planning now? >> secretary psaki: i'm not going to get into the specific intelligence but i will tell you and reconfirm for you that the threat is ongoing. we are continuing to watch and
assess the threat. >> president biden talked about ending the forever war, but how do you and the forever war in afghanistan if the united states is still continuing to attack isis-k? >> secretary psaki: first i would say that this is a specific case today where 12 individual service members and 15 who were wounded today. certainly i would expect any president of the united states to be clear then he will avenge those deaths in the acts of terrorists. i don't like it came as a surprise to anybody. but the president stands by as he outlined all of you will come in the last hour his commitment to bringing an end to nowhere as he hasn't lamented over the course of the last month. of what we are talking about is avenging these stats from terrorists and were not talking about sending tens of thousands of troops back for an endless war that we've been fighting for 20 years. >> reporter: a bit of a
related question to josh's. and when the obama administration was bringing in syrian refugees, there's a lot of pushback from various states, about refugees coming into the communities. how do you see that situation this time around? is this going to be different? do you anticipate same kind of pushback's and hard feelings? >> secretary psaki: we will see. i will see a what we've been working to do his work closely with governors, localities. local leaders. to give them detailed briefings on what our vending process looks like and what the background check process looks like before any individual comes into the united states and that's a background check process that is thorough before they are allowed to come in and step on u.s. soil. we also know there are some people in the country even some in congress who may not want to have people from another country comments refugees to the united states.
that's reality. if we cannot stop or prevent that on her own. but we are going to continue to communicate the intensive vetting process and work hard to do that do that behind the scenes. we will continue to convey clearly that this is also part of who we are and part of the fabric of united states. go ahead. >> reporter: i'm wondering if the administration has negotiations to release him as part of the prior initiative? >> secretary psaki: re-raise his kids every opportunity and it's been raised but i have no update on that yet. >> reporter: you say the remaining days the u.s. troops are in kabul, are there any additional precautions taken? are there any other precautions taken? >> secretary psaki: i do not think i will get into operational details of what's happening on the ground certainly there are steps taken to protect our troops.
by the commanders leading the effort on the ground. >> reporter: we make clear to the taliban any attack on the forces will be met with swift and forceful response. where is this an attack of the forces targeted at the airport? the operations disrupted? if indeed it was, would disqualify for a swift and forceful response? >> secretary psaki: the president addressed exactly that when he said we will not forgive, we will not forget, we will hunt you down. when he spoke an hour. he was referring to the attack of terrorists from isis-k who launched the attack and kill u.s. service members. >> reporter: regardless -- >> secretary psaki: i don't think you could have been more clear. >> reporter: 67 house democrats have signed on to a letter asking the president to raise the refugee cap in the
fiscal year 2022 to at least 200,000. if you're looking at about 125,000 right now? is not something the white house is willing to expect? >> secretary psaki: i've not talked about the specific question with the present but we are trying to do is get the muscles working again. them both in the systems and then the incredible refugee groups that are working on welcoming refugees from around the country. if working on getting our vending processes and systems around the world that need to be in good shape in order to welcome refugees to get as many as we can but i've not had a conversation with him about everything beyond the 125. i'm happy to do that. >> reporter: given that kabul has been the main building departure point in the country, owner of the administration knows how many of the american citizens that are in the country still are outside of kabul? in the future efforts, going out
and rescue people? >> secretary psaki: yes come out on your latter question i'm not going to get into more details and we will continue. if the former question, the vast majority are within this kabul vicinity. the state department provided an update earlier today but i know there's a lot happening today. if let me reiterate a couple of the numbers. if of the 1500 that they briefed on yesterday, roughly 500 have been evacuated. we are talking about additional 1,000 that we believe remain afghanistan in the last majority over two-thirds informed us they were taking steps to leave. we are in touch with but as we are working through and what we are focused on every single day. reporting back to be clear, you're saying the missions have taken place. >> secretary psaki: i'm not confirming they have or haven't but i will convey it. it went out of him telling you his bennett to get american
citizens home and out of afghanistan if they want to leave. that includes people around the country. reporter mike earlier general mckenzie said there focused on other active threats to u.s. service members. they are on. are all the threads the u.s. currently facing from isis-k are there other groups that need to be sought after? >> secretary psaki: i will not detail information about ongoing life threats. >> reporter: do you know if the president still feels as though the chaos in the violence that we see on the ground in kabul was all unavoidable even at this point? >> secretary psaki: do you mean 11 days ago? >> reporter: yes. >> secretary psaki: i would say if we go back to 11 days ago, that's your specific question. we certainly didn't anticipate that the leadership of the afghan government when leave in
the manner and the manner and the timeline that they did or that the afghan the afghan national security courses would cease to protect the airport. parts of kabul and that's not we anticipated in the timeline. that's true and what we will say and reiterate again is within 24-48 hours we secured an airport and evacuated more than 104,000 people. go ahead. >> reporter: how do you describe the relationship with taliban and the attack? are they still helping out security and with the relationship right now? >> secretary psaki: again, it's not a friendship or a relationship where there is trust. we are continuing to coordinate to move american citizens to afghan partners and our allies out. the fact we've evacuated 7,000 people in the last 12 or 13 hours now is evidence of that. go ahead. >> reporter: two republican senators so far have called on the president to resign over the attacks today, what's going on?
>> secretary psaki: i would say first, this is the day where u.s. service members 12 of them lost their lives at the hands of terrorists. it's not a day for politics and we would expect that any american would stand with us and the commitment to going after and fighting, and killing the terrorists wherever they live and to honoring the memory of service members. that's what this day is for. >> reporter: thank you. yesterday when i was leaving the white house, i spoke to a group of men at the white house gates who said that they were service members here in america in the armed forces. >> jen psaki white house press secretary at the white house briefing room providing q&a for reporters there about the situation after the tragic day and we can confirm here on fox news the death toll has risen yet again. it is 13 u.s. service members, 12 marines, one navy medic who
died as a result of the two suicide bombers in kabul today. at the kabul airport just outside. bringing back strategic analyst retired general jack keane. you're listening to jen psaki and talking about the specifics. i want to hit on one thing that she set about the taliban. they are not our friends and we do not trust them. i will say, general, the commander of central command and rear admiral of the u.s. forces on the ground in afghanistan have previously in written correspondence and verbal referred to the taliban as our afghan partners. we talked before we went to the briefing there about what the u.s. is doing as far as the taliban. the amount of trust we are giving the taliban as far as security. i want to play a sound bite where general mckenzie today was asked about threats we are seeing going forward and listen to the end of this and i will get you your reaction.
>> very, very what we call tactical, eminent could occur at any moment. they range from rocket attacks and we know they aim to get the suicide vehicles attacks and if they can from a small vehicle to a large vehicle. look at all the options and we are doing every thing we can to be prepared for those attacks. that includes reaching out to the taliban who are providing security cord and around the area to make sure they know what we expect them to do to protect us. >> bret: again, i want to get your thoughts about that and the reliance on the taliban and talking about it. >> certainly. i understand what they are saying. certainly the taliban does on the contrary, it does own kabul, we've got to coordinate with them. if we never go as far as to refer to them as our partners. for sure. but i think when we look at this
in hindsight, will figure out there was a better way to secure our outer perimeter then relying completely on the taliban. should we have been out there with them so that we could coordinate with them and they can help us? should we have just done it ourselves? some kind of cooperation with them? but what took place we know obviously was unsatisfactory. listen, this is a tough situation. we made an early decision about the airfield and that's going to be revisited. that would have taken a much larger force to secure it. we may have had forced entry operation to get control event and we know how to do that. much larger force would have given us a lot more freedom to operate out of that airfield in terms of our drones and all the other things we want to do to secure it and we have a lot more surveillance over what was taken
plaisance. then we were were likely to have given the airport and all the limitations. that will be looked at. i share the concern about the taliban and i know the leaders who were involved in making those decisions obviously were not good options there. but i think in hindsight looking back on it, it is what it is, bret. they didn't accomplish the mission and the security broke down, we've got a number of people obviously killed as a result of that security failure. >> bret: if anything the taliban is the partner of al qaeda as you had the taliban spokesperson tell nbc that bin laden was not responsible for 9/11. the history of those ties are really, really strong. you mention the airbase and i want to ask you one less thing can i do truly believe the consensus of the president's military advisors was that they shouldn't hold on to the
airbase? it's hard for me to believe that. >> it is for me, but i found that astounding. we had a lot of misrepresentation here by the president over the last week or so. i'm not sure where that falls into it frankly. this much i do know. we've got to really come to grips with how much of a problem the arbitrary date of august 31st really constance. when that date was established, it denied us the opportunity to provide air support and intelligence to the afghan security forces in the taliban started to roll them out. if we were taken down seven bases. it denied us the opportunity to actually get the people out before we got the troops out. if which doesn't make sense in anybody's equation. certainly, the taliban takeover and the fact that afghanistan once again is going to become an
epicenter for terrorism, we have not ended the forever war so to speak. i think it's misnamed rather grammatically. we've expanded the war because reticle islamism is on the rise again. at one time people will come there, bret, as a result of that. if the terrorist threat indisputably will grow in afghanistan as did the ci director told the president of the united states he says the taliban takes over, there will be significant risk to the united states. here we are. if we are on the cusp of it seeing that take place in front of our very eyes. what will happen eventually is i'm talking about inside of afghanistan. it's a huge strategic mistake that we've made here. you're absolutely right, we've
got to relook at the security information and the outer perimeter not relying on the taliban certainly to do that. by the way, the network that has close ties to the al qaeda. it's the worst of the worst that operates inside of afghanistan and we know it well. they're responsible for most of the mass killings that take place in the capital city of kabul to throughout the 20 years that we have been there. >> bret: it's a web between al qaeda and taliban, and we have seen it all over the years. in general jack keane, we appreciate your analysis and thank you. let's bring in ian bremmer, the founder president of the erasure group, political risk research and consulting firm. i want to get your thoughts, 30,000 feet on today where we are in afghanistan where the administration is and after he heard the president. >> it's the worst day of the biden administration. it certainly goes without
saying. this was never going to be easy. nobody wants to have a war and failure on their watch. i will say in that regard, i agree with the president's decision but that's a very different the execution. we have seen the execution from the committee conditions perspective, from a planning and intelligence perspective, from a coordination perspective with our allies and the coalition that we fought with side-by-side for 20 years has been very, very lacking. and now today, we have 13 americans service members who tragically died doing their jobs trying to get people processed as they were evacuated from kabul airport. none of us want to have a day
like today, least of all the president of the united states. this war did not have to be on him. 20 years, $2 trillion spent, there's a lot of other places that you can allocate responsibility for the war. the last couple weeks, president biden has gotten more of his share of it. mistakes have been made in the execution of the withdrawal. unfortunately, they are feeling it now. of >> bret: there is no doubt that there will be a lot of looking back and all the faults about the war and how long it lasted and should we have been there for as long as we were? but how we got out of the war he is definitely falling to president biden. as he talks about the reliance on the taliban and kind of the interaction between the security situation and relying on the taliban, i talked about it with general keane. what are your thoughts? >> well, i go back to what
president biden and secretary of state lincoln were saying one month before kabul fell. there were quite confident that we would not be pulling american citizens off the roof like saigon. they were confident how the afghan government in charge on friday, and then suddenly the taliban in charge on a monday. those were confident statements made by administration that was taking the time line the decision of their choosing to remove the americans from the battlefield. again, not in confrontation with our allies. of course they do not trust the taliban. the reason the americans are in this unconscionable decision of having to effectively outsource
the well-being and security of the remaining americans in afghanistan over 1,000, tens of thousands of afghan civilians, we have cleared for evacuation. but they can't get out. it is because the country and they had planned and expected for the worst case scenarios. we've heard it directly from biden and secretary blinken. the last week, we heard biden speaking like it could have gone no other way. no, sir, that's not what you tell the american people one month ago. one of the reasons why he was elected was because he was trusted. he didn't lie to people. if this is where he's getting hurt in the last week. they just do not figure it out. >> bret: exactly, to your point, and the interview with george stephanopoulos he said there is no other way that there is chaos and we've gone through all the different contingencies.
i saw a tweet from you today if he said the biden administration consider the attacking remotely possible possible scenario, they do not evacuate bagram air base. >> i do not say that because i believe militarily. i'm hardly a tactician. when he suddenly evacuated overnight from bob graham , that's what strengthens the forces and the government recognizes the americans are not out. we are not going to have any ability to fight on the ground. that is what causes the collapse. the problem was the message that you're sending is to leave in the american intelligence when the u.s. was pulling out, that the government the afghan government and the defense forces that we funded
$80 million over 20 years, they would last for 60 years. after the americans pulled out, those estimates flipped two or three days. if never in my life have i seen intelligence estimates be suddenly and dramatically off by that much. >> bret: fascinating to watch. ian bremmer, i appreciate your time. let's bring in the panel, "washington post" columnist marc thiessen. jason riley, wall street columnist and senior fellow at the manhattan institute. you've covered the white house for a long time, this was the worst day of the presidency so far. your thoughts on how the president dealt with it and where the administrations trying to get us? >> well, i think that the president came out and he was very somber, he said he took full responsibility for everything that happens happens. i don't like he had a choice in
that. he stuck in the decision to pull out. but there is an incredible question about why he was so 18. he keeps on saying that it was inevitable and there has to be a kind of chaotic exit but i don't think he is saying that was inevitable that we would have lost one dozen u.s. soldiers. up until now, the white house has to hope that they can evacuate afghanistan without any loss of american life. today it happened. it a whole lot of other assumptions where exposed today like you can rely on taliban. they were wrong about it to. this is just a really bad day for the white house and for the country. >> bret: it really is. we saw it evolve from the beginning parts of the day. your thoughts? >> we talked about jack keane and ian bremmer, when things
overlooked about bagram is that it contains the largest prison in afghanistan. the decision to hand bagram over to the taliban allows them to release between 5,007,000 prisoners and include any maxim security cell where most the hardened al qaeda and isis leaders were. they were released before the withdrawal and free to go after them. let's hope that none of those terrorists were involved in the attack today because that would be a searing indictment of decision to withdraw from bagram. the other point is, instead of being chased us, he justified his decision to stick with the august 31st withdrawal date. he said it's why am so determined to omit the duration of the operation. by killing americans today, the reader to make to they reinforced his decision to stick with the deadline and the artificial deadline to retreat.
they succeeded in the mission. >> bret: this is a sound that gives you the sense of the day as it developed. >> hostile environment in the city and country now controlled by the taliban. with the very real possibility of a isis-k attack. >> is a challenging, tense dynamic environment with the rights that are still real. >> u.s. citizens advice to leave the airport and surrounding areas immediately. >> we are hearing about an explosion just taken place at the airport in kabul. >> we can confirm that there was 12 u.s. service members killed in the attack. >> if we find who was associated with this, we will go after them. >> we will not forgive. we will not forget. we will hunt you down and make you pay. >> bret: obviously the nerves during the show , 13 service members, 13
marines, one navy medic killed in the attack. all he said the president had the moment about going after th. that's what he wanted to convey. you want to comment about his remarks. >> what sadness this is a manufactured crisis. this is the administrations own doing. we see what happens when you do things in the wrong order. you do not pull your troops out before you get your people out. before you get the embassy workers out in the americans out, the afghans who helped us out. then you pull the troops out. if we are seeing what happens when you trust the taliban to help you reach your ends. it's a terrorist group. the administrations trying to pretend the taliban's like a kind and gentle layer terrorist group unlike a isis. they are not. they all share the same ends and
none shed a tear and seeing u.s. service members lose their lives. the taliban's been lying from the beginning and they said they would not host the extreme terrorist groups inside of afghanistan. effect of the matter, both isis and al qaeda have a presence in that country. it's a violation of the deal for us leaving the place. again, this is a misguided policy by the biden administration that they seem to be doubling down on. >> bret: they were asked about the political report saying u.s. officials provided names, afghan allies to evacuate. basically they put all those afghans on the kill list and one defense official condition of being anonymous. it's appalling and shocking and makes you feel unclean. here's what the president said about the taliban. >> there is no evidence thus far that i've given consequence by any of the commanders in the
field that there has been collusion between the taliban and isis. they are not good guys, the taliban. i'm not suggesting that at all. but they have keen interests. >> bret: he said that the lists may have been given to get people through the checkpoint. we know that general mckenzie said today they are sharing intel with the taliban. thoughts? >> he said he didn't know about it and it might exist. he said so far there is no evidence that they have done anything wrong with the list. okay, he is been wrong on so many other things. we are going to have to wait and see if anybody on the list, if it can be proven that the taliban went out and took reprisal against those people. after today, the notion that you can trust the taliban whether they could or won't is unclear. they certainly were not able to
provide security around the airport. i do not know why giving them a list of people they should let through checkpoints is going to be helpful. >> bret: last word, no way the president is going to be impeached. even though there is a couple calls in the senate and several in the house from republicans to do that. jen psaki saying today is not about politics, it's about coming together. that's true. getting americans not only the service members, but the americans on the afghan allies on the has to be job one. >> it is, but he's completely unchastened by the experience. when he should do is there a spectacle and moral thing, you should say to the taliban we hold you responsible for the attack. you took responsibility for the perimeter of the airport, you decided who came in and out, you let the suicide bombers through. intentional or not, you responsible and we cannot complete the evacuation in time and we are staying beyond augus. as long as the mission takes and
we are not requesting, we are telling you. by the way, we are going after every isis and al qaeda position in afghanistan before we leave. if you're saying you're going after them to hunt them down while you're pulling all your troops out on tuesdays probably not a big threat. we will stay until we got the people who did this to us and we are going to take them out and if you interfere, you're going to regret it. >> bret: panel, thank you very much. today's tragic bombings being described as a coordinated complex attack. national security correspondent jennifer griffin at the pentagon with a look at that. if you've been putting out a lot of hours as you look at the flag at half-staff at the white hous. for all the service members in the 12 marines, one navy medic killed. amazing to work with you and talking to all your sources, can you explain the apparent catch-22 regarding the taliban and relying on it to protect u.s. troops at the airport?
>> bret, the sickening feeling that i feel and experienced by everybody walking the halls today, they knew it was going to happen. they knew, the u.s. military new that when they were given a strict timeline to pullouts, that they would be going back in. they would be going back in possibly under fire. for 20 years, they've tried to stop every suicide bomber and every terror group in the country. if they couldn't do it. the notion now that they are going to hunt down isis and they are going to stop those who carried out the attack boggles the mind. the people they would have relied on to do that kind of work, hunt down the terrorists, they are now cowering and hiding in basements in safe houses because they can't get to the airport for safety. all our partners say they've either left the country or in hiding and we have left them. if the taliban have lists of their name going house to house looking for them.
if i do not understand how you're going to have over the horizon capabilities and intelligence and be able to find the isis network that you cannot find for the last 20 years in the next coming days by tuesday which is your self-imposed deadline. the military has been given impossible deadlines from the get-go. it goes back to the previous administration and it was doubled down by the biden administration when joe biden announced that they had to be out by arbitrarily september 11. then what it set in motion and what the taliban, the fact they have to negotiate with the taliban, let's remember who is in charge of security for kabul. not just taliban, it is the network. the head of security for the taliban in kabul has a $5 million fbi reward on his head because he's part of the leading terror group.
the impossible number of catch-22's in the situation they find themselves in is boggling the mind. >> bret: you're right. that the president is talking and he says we are going to go after those responsible. that's possible, we've got the best military in the world and special ops can go anywhere they want to go. how will they go after isis and al qaeda in afghanistan now? after august 31st? >> it's almost impossible. the intelligence network is just a ride up when the u.s. military clause to bagram airbase and they pulled all the cia base is out. they don't have an intelligence network anymore because all those people who helped the u.s. government are in hiding. they may be of the strike at some empty training camp somewhere in the province, but it's going to be very difficult to go after these groups now that u.s. military -- the u.s. military can't even leave the airport right now, no less go
into crowded areas where the isis cells are likely operating in hiding. isis is now in the capital. this is a very dangerous mission and my heart breaks for the marines and the paratroopers who are standing watch tonight at the kabul airport. >> bret: jennifer griffin, live from the pentagon, thank you. if talking about bagram air base bagram air base, been there very many times. i know it well, take a listen. >> badly damaged hanger here at bagram air base, they told secretary roosevelt the u.s. military effort in afghanistan provided the help of most afghans wanted. they reiterated the u.s. military effort was always about reading the country of terrorism. taliban commanders start to feel like they have to be a part of the political process to remain relevant.
>> bret: hard to believe it's all coming down to this. this exit. our heart goes out to all those who have lost lives today in service of this country to their families. if we owe them a debt of gratitude. we will continue to cover the story fairly, thank you for trusting us. fair, balanced, and unafraid. jesse watters has "prime time live today tough day. >> good evening, welcome to "fox news primetime" i'm jesse watters. fox news alert, just when you thought it could not get any worse, we learned another u.s. service member has died. of bringing the taft told to 13 americans dead in the wake of the vicious attack outside the airport and kabul afghanistan. at the same time, countless americans remain stranded there tonight behind enemy lines begging to come home. the president, a wall all day. and you to be found. when he woke up, sounded lost and
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