- Sen. Ben Sasse on Sunday said that the US should have a “light footprint” of troops in Afghanistan.
- Sasse called President Biden’s withdrawal strategy “a false choice” that “has never been true.”
- He has called out both Biden and former President Trump for their handling of the Afghanistan War.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Sen. Ben Sasse said that the US should keep a “light footprint” of troops in Afghanistan to counter potential terrorists in the country with the reemergence of Taliban rule.
During an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” the Nebraska Republican told host Chris Wallace that President Joe Biden should make it clear that the country could change its position on the US withdrawal if American citizens and allies are threatened.
He also rejected the notion that the US having a small presence in the country would be a problematic proposition.
“The false choice that the President has laid out again and again and again for months has never been true,” he said. “The choice has never been between zero troops and just withdrawing and giving the Taliban back a sanctuary to allow terrorists to plot attacks of international reach or on the other hand, having 150,000 occupying ground forces.”
He added: “So that was never the choice, and that’s always been false, we need an asset – light, light footprint but a forward deployment of special forces that can stop these kind of terror attacks.”
Sasse, who was reelected to a second term last year, has emerged as a major critic of Biden’s withdrawal strategy, slamming what he called the “Trump-Biden doctrine of weakness” and “the shameful, Saigon-like abandonment of Kabul” after the Taliban essentially took control of the country last week.
During the interview with Wallace, Sasse also said that Biden’s actions have created a risky scenario for the thousands of Americans in Afghanistan.
“They’ve put us in a situation where we have a hostage situation developing,” he said. “I don’t think the American people fully appreciate the danger and the peril into which the president has put us, because one RPG [rocket-propelled grenade], taking down a plane onto that runway means we’re stranded. The president needs to make sure that this hostage situation into which we are drifting, that the Taliban knows we will not stand for it.”
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