The aftermath of President Biden’s decision to proceed with the previously negotiated withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan has dominated the media for the past week. To be sure, any retreat from failed military operations cannot be expected to be free of difficulty. And there are troubling images of desperate Afghans seeking to escape the anticipated tyranny of Taliban rule.
Unfortunately, much of the media coverage has focused on melodramatic moments that lack context. The press as a whole seems to have forgotten what Afghanistan was like prior to the U.S. invasion in 2001. In short, it was pretty much the same then as it will be going forward once the evacuation is complete. No better, no worse, and no discernible benefit from twenty years of occupation. The lesson to be learned is not one about predictable hardships following a lengthy war in hostile territory, but about the futility of waging such wars in the first place.
Not surprisingly, Fox News has taken the most preposterous positions regarding the end of the Afghanistan adventure. They have entirely ignored that the original, severely flawed agreement to leave was negotiated by the Trump administration (which he is still bragging about). That deal has been rebuked by Trump’s own National Security Adviser, General H.R. McMaster, as a “surrender agreement.” It lifted all sanctions on the Taliban and freed 5,000 of their imprisoned fighters, but got nothing in return.
What’s more, while Fox News harshly criticizes the Biden administration’s handling of efforts to evacuate Afghans who helped the U.S. during the two decade occupation, they are simultaneously complaining about the prospect of bringing those refugees to America. Tucker Carlson has labeled them “invaders” who are “coming to your neighborhood.”
On Sunday’s episode of Fox and Friends, co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy went to even more bizarre lengths to malign Biden. She began by regurgitating the tedious Fox News trope that Biden is mentally unfit to serve as president (video below):
“I look at this and I think ‘Wow. We had a president who was impeached over a phone call.’ This looks like a much more impeachable offense. If you ask me, I know that’s probably, technically it’s probably not, but when you look at what’s hurting America, when you look at the lack of leadership, and you wonder who are the people responsible for putting someone this incompetent, and frankly this, you know, mentally frail in this position?”
Note that the American people already made their judgment about that by overwhelmingly voting for Biden. And they had previously determined that it was Trump who doesn’t have the mental soundness to serve (according to a Fox News poll, no less). Also, Trump wasn’t impeached “over a phone call.” It was his treasonous effort to pressure the president of Ukraine to interfere in the U.S. election that resulted in the first of his two impeachments.
As for grounds to impeach Biden, Campos-Duffy admits that there aren’t any. (unlike Sen. Lindsey Graham, who is apparently even more ignorant of the Constitution than she is). But her craziness was just getting started.
“Of course the media and many people are saying – you had some people on your show this week who were saying it was Susan Rice and Obama and maybe Valerie Jarrett. I’m sorry, as a political spouse, I can’t help but look at Jill Biden, No one knew better his state of mind than Dr. Jill Biden. And if you ask me, the most patriotic thing Jill Biden could have done was tell her husband – to love her husband and not let him run in this mental state that he’s in. I think she failed the country as well.”
So now it’s all Jill Biden’s fault? Never mind that Campos-Duffy didn’t bother to cite a single example of any behavior by the President that would warrant such concerns. She still managed to place the blame on a woman, and one who is highly accomplished and respected.
However, Campos-Duffy never had any concerns about Melania Trump’s tolerance of her husband’s obvious cognitive deficiencies. After all, Donald Trump believed that stealth fighters are actually invisible, that windmills cause cancer, that we should nuke hurricanes, that George Washington’s Army took over airports, and that injecting bleach will cure COVID.
Melania never said a single word about any of that. Clearly she is not a patriot and is responsible for all of the harm that Trump caused during his four years of non-stop incoherence, ignorance, incompetence, and raging hostility. Is too late to impeach her?
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How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.