Trump somehow still doesn’t understand that the Taliban, al-Qaeda ≠ Afghan government
He bragged he could kill tens of millions of Afghan civilians within a week.
Donald Trump was inaugurated a long time ago. Two and a half years ago. Thirty months ago. Nine hundred and fourteen days ago. And yet, impossibly, he still doesn’t seem to understand even the broad strokes of the War in Afghanistan.
Asked about the war and Pakistan’s assistance moving forward on Monday, Trump bragged that he could “win that war in a week” by “killing 10 million people.” He added that “Afghanistan would be wiped off the face of the Earth, it would be gone, it would be over in 10 days” if he wanted.
While Trump mentions the length of the war that has spanned nearly two full decades, he doesn’t seem to even understand what he is saying. It’s not possible Trump was referring to extremist groups, as the number of militants fighting the government is less than 100,000.
So Trump is threatening to kill millions of unarmed Afghan civilians whose government is on the same side as the U.S. (Perhaps even scarier is the implicit threat that the plan involves nuclear weapons, since killing that many people in such short a time frame is basically impossible without them.)
The U.S. and Afghan governments have worked together during the length of the war to try and drive out the Taliban, al-Qaeda and other extremist groups from the region. While the U.S. has undoubtedly led the two nations in this fight, military training and support, dual missions and more have been the norm for the length since the U.S.’s invasion.
And yet Trump, who in theory has been briefed on these issues frequently and has access to any information he wants about the war, doesn’t understand that Afghanistan is a partner and not the enemy in the conflict. That should be impossible after so long in office (much less how long the war has been going on). Sadly, Trump’s comments revealed yet again just how deep his ignorance about a vitally important subject is.
914 days in, 548 to go