U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) objected to the unanimous consent of several Department of Defense nominations, followed by remarks that outlined the Biden administration’s failures and lack of accountability in the aftermath of the botched Afghanistan withdrawal last summer. He also reiterated how the administration is on the brink of another disaster, this time with Ukraine.
Senator Hawley said, “Here we are, six months since […] the disastrous withdrawal in Afghanistan. Thirteen service members were killed, including one from my home state of Missouri. Dozens more wounded. Hundreds, hundreds of civilians killed, hundreds more, maybe thousands of American civilians, left behind enemy lines to terrorists, to fend for themselves. Still hundreds of Americans stranded there in Afghanistan as we speak.
“And what accountability has there been in this time? Who has been relieved of duty? Who has been shown the door? What have we learned? The answer is, there’s been no accountability. No one has been relieved of duty. No one has been shown the door. And now this Administration has bumbled to the brink of another foreign policy crisis that they have helped create, having denied Ukraine military aid – lethal aid – when it asked for it last spring, having stuffed dollars in Vladimir Putin’s pockets by greenlighting the Nord Stream 2 Energy Pipeline. And now here they are, on the verge of another foreign policy crisis, and still, we have no answers. Still, we have no accountability.”
He went on to point to the recent reporting by the Washington Post, detailing the warnings that the State Department and White House had received for months ahead of the disastrous evacuation of Americans and the impending collapse of Kabul.
“So yes, I will be here, insisting on those answers, insisting on oversight, and insisting on accountability until we get it. Until that time, it is not too much to ask the Senate to do its job. I believe the Majority Leader said just the other day, that the Senate is here to vote. That’s what the Senate’s here to do. Well, that’s an apt phrase, Mr. President. And for once, I agree very much with the Senate Majority Leader. And for those reasons, I object,” he concluded.
Following the disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal, Senator Hawley pledged to demand accountability from the Biden Administration. Since then, he has detailed the “phony culture war” the Administration was fighting while Americans in Afghanistan paid the price, called for an investigation into the withdrawal, and spoken out multiple times on the Senate Floor.
Senator Hawley has called on President Biden, General Milley, Secretary Blinken, and Secretary Austin to resign for their roles in the Afghanistan withdrawal.