The Struggle for the Soul of America: Republican Hypocrites Call for Biden’s Impeachment

A very dark cloud hangs over Afghanistan. Last Thursday Islamic state terrorists killed 13 U.S. troops and dozens of Afghan civilians attempting to escape through the Kabul airport.[1] Since the Taliban captured Kabul two weeks ago, about 117,000 people, mostly Afghans, have been evacuated from the country.[2] After 20 years of war, the United States is finally pulling out of Afghanistan, leaving the country in chaos.

Far right Republicans like Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn and Missouri Senator Josh Hawley are calling for President Biden’s impeachment or resignation.[3] They and a host of other Republicans argue that “his decisions created an environment ripe for crisis that indicates he is not capable of leadership.”[4]

These Republicans choose to ignore the fact that in February 2020 the Trump Administration signed the Doha agreement with the Taliban to withdraw all U.S. and NATO forces from Afghanistan by May 1, 2021. It did this in exchange for the Taliban’s ceasing attacks on U.S. forces. This deal “was widely recognized as having thrown our allies [the Afghan government] under the bus, as the Taliban were free to carry on fighting the Afghan army as long as they didn’t attack U.S. forces.”[5]

At the same time, the deal strengthened the Taliban’s ability to overthrow the Afghan government. It included the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners in exchange for 1,000 Afghan security force prisoners. For this and other reasons, “it was immediately clear to all observers that the treaty comprehensively removed incentives for the Taliban to compromise.”[6]

In other words, it was President Trump, not Biden, who set the stage for this Afghan catastrophe. And it’s laughable, as one observer noted, that Trump is blasting Biden for what’s happening in Afghanistan since “he was criticizing Biden for following through on his own exit strategy.”[7]

Like all of Trump’s presidential acts, the Doha Agreement and the U.S. troop withdrawal (Only 2500 remained when Biden took office.) were primarily motivated by Trump’s belief that it would benefit him personally in his 2020 re-election campaign.[8] For Trump and many Republicans to now call for Biden’s impeachment or resignation over the Afghan debacle is beyond the pale. Still, it’s typical Republican behavior to be outraged at their opponents’ actions while they find Trump and other Republicans’ more reprehensible conduct somehow acceptable.

For example, Republicans refused to impeach and convict President Trump when he incited a rightwing mob to storm the U.S. Capitol and prevent Congress from certifying the 2020 presidential election. Plus, when the insurrection turned violent and Capitol police were being killed and maimed, Trump waited three hours before begrudgingly calling for reinforcements.[9]

Or, when the Democrats introduced the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voter Rights Act which would protect all Americans right to vote. The Republicans called this a “power grab” and “a stunning one-party takeover of voting laws and elections in our country.”[10] Yet, in red state after red state, they are the ones who are enacting voter suppression laws to ensure one-party Republican control of our government.[11]

It is incumbent upon the Biden Administration and the Democratic Party to expose the Republicans as the utter hypocrites they are. While the Democrats are far from perfect, unlike the Republicans, they do not make everything about political power. The pullout from Afghanistan, the impeachment of Trump and the current voting rights bills in Congress are all, first and foremost, for the benefit of the American people. That the vast majority of the Republican Party is, first and foremost, all about power puts American democracy in dire jeopardy.

Bruce Berlin, J.D.

A retired, public sector ethics attorney, Berlin is the author of Breaking Big Money’s Grip on America (See breakingbigmoneysgrip.com.), the founder of New Mexicans for Money Out of Politics, a former U.S. Institute of Peace fellow, and the founder and former executive director of The Trinity Forum for International Security and Conflict Resolution. He can be reached at breakingbigmoneysgrip@gmail.com.

Subscribe to this blog at https://breakingbigmoneysgrip.com/my-blog-3/. Join the movement to revive our democracy. Together we can save the soul of America.


[1] https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/26/world/asia/kabul-airport-bombing.html

[2] https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/28/world/asia/afghanistan-evacuations.html

[3] https://www.yahoo.com/now/wave-republicans-call-biden-impeachment-223000412.html

[4] Ibid.

[5] https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/afghanistan-airport-explosion-happened-under-biden-traces-back-trump-ncna1277755

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/19/us/politics/trump-biden-afghan-taliban.html

[9] https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/13/us/politics/trump-impeached.html

[10] https://www.foxnews.com/politics/rnc-exec-dems-hr-1-hostile-takeover-election-process; https://www.republicanleader.senate.gov/newsroom/remarks/hr-1-would-create-a-stunning-one-party-takeover-of-voting-laws-and-elections-in-our-country

[11] https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/voting-laws-roundup-july-2021

The Struggle for the Soul of America: The Afghan Tragedy

I travelled overland through Afghanistan on my way to India in the fall of 1972. It was before the failed Russian invasion and well before the American incursion. Back then, the country was at peace.

What struck me most about Afghanistan was its rugged independence. I entered the country from its western neighbor, Iran. Having been ruled by the U.S. supported Shah for many years, Iran clearly exhibited a strong American influence. To the east of Afghanistan stood Pakistan, which had been part of the British Empire for a long time.

Surrounded by all this western persuasion, Afghanistan proudly maintained its unique individuality. In fact, it was more like a gathering of tribal fiefdoms than a unified country. To believe that a foreign power like the United States could march in and transform Afghanistan into a western styled democracy was a fool’s errand.

Tragically, it took 20 years for the United States to understand that it could not determine the outcome of Afghanistan’s civil war. During that time we spent nearly $1 trillion in this futile attempt.[1] Related costs, e.g., interest on the war debt and support for injured military, will continue to mount for years to come. In addition, more than six thousand Americans lost their lives there. Well over a hundred thousand Afghanis were killed as well.[2]

The United States has little to show for this massive endeavor. Yes, we took out Osama Ben Laden. But that was in Pakistan over ten years ago.[3] In truth, our country just postponed the inevitable, the Taliban control of Afghanistan.

Probably the greatest tragedy has yet to come. The Taliban treat Afghani women and girls savagely. With its takeover of the country, women will be beaten, even executed, for the smallest violations of the Taliban’s strict moral code.[4]

Afghanistan is yet another example of grossly incompetent American foreign policy. Our country has a counterproductive habit of backing unpopular, corrupt governments that are eventually overthrown by native insurgents who then install anti-American, militant regimes. A prime example is the Shah of Iran, who was deposed by the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, bringing about the Islamic revolution in 1979.[5] The U.S. involvement in Chile, Cuba and Vietnam also come to mind.

But the worst case of disastrous American foreign policy, of course, is China. Chiang Kai-Shek and the Kuomintang may have been the most corrupt of all U.S. allies.[6] In 1949, his American backed government was toppled by Mao Zedong and the communist revolution. More than seventy years later, the United States is still coping with the consequences of that misguided policy blunder.

Now, with this latest foreign policy catastrophe, we can only hope that our country will learn a strategic lesson about involving itself in another nation’s internal affairs. While we may mean well, the United States does not have the omniscient wisdom and wherewithal to do what’s right for other countries. We have a nearly impossible time doing the right thing for our own people.

While we cannot and should not completely withdraw from the world stage, our nation must step back and fully re-examine how to move forward in the international arena in the best interests of justice and world peace.

Bruce Berlin, J.D.

A retired, public sector ethics attorney, Berlin is the author of Breaking Big Money’s Grip on America (See breakingbigmoneysgrip.com.), the founder of New Mexicans for Money Out of Politics, a former U.S. Institute of Peace fellow, and the founder and former executive director of The Trinity Forum for International Security and Conflict Resolution. He can be reached at breakingbigmoneysgrip@gmail.com.

Subscribe to this blog at https://breakingbigmoneysgrip.com/my-blog-3/. Join the movement to revive our democracy. Together we can save the soul of America.


[1] https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/08/14/statement-by-president-joe-biden-on-afghanistan/

[2] https://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2021-08-14/costs-of-the-afghanistan-war-in-lives-and-dollars

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_of_Osama_bin_Laden#:~:text=Osama%20bin%20Laden%2C%20the%20founder,DEVGRU%20or%20SEAL%20Team%20Six

[4] https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2021/08/the-talibans-return-is-awful-for-women-in-afghanistan/619765/

[5] https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/shah-flees-iran

[6] https://www.salon.com/2014/03/08/35_countries_the_u_s_has_backed_international_crime_partner/