House military committee looks at Afghan mission

Former U.S Ambassador Ryan Crocker told the U.S. House Armed Services Committee hearing Friday that the United States is "waving the white flag" in Afghanistan. (Nov. 20)

Video Transcript

ADAM SMITH: What we've learned in 19 years is, we are not going to impose peace on Afghanistan. We are not-- however, we're going to bring a coalition together and try to build institutions and reduce corruption and build confidence. Outside forces are not going to bring peace to Afghanistan. One way or the other, the people of Afghanistan are going to have to make that choice.

And it seems to me at this point that the common-sense thing to do is to have the absolute minimum presence that we require to meet our goal of stopping that transnational terrorist threat. I happen to believe that we need to draw down there.

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RYAN CROCKER: It will take strategic patience and it will take continued US engagement. The peace process, so-called, that was launched now almost two years ago represented a very bad US concession.

This, again, so-called peace process-- that's not what this is about. These are surrender talks. We're waving the White flag, basically saying to the Taliban, you win, we lose. Let's dress this up as best we can. al-Qaeda did attack the Homeland from Afghanistan, hosted by the Taliban. They have not become kinder and gentler in the intervening years.

It is, I'm afraid to say, folly to think that a full US troop withdrawal is somehow going to make us safer or uphold our core values.