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Flying Blind: After Botched Afghanistan Exit, U.S. Takes Hit on Al Qaeda Intelligence.

Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie Says We’re at ‘About 1 or 2% of Our Capabilities.’

Photo for: Flying Blind: After Botched Afghanistan Exit, U.S. Takes Hit on Al Qaeda Intelligence.

Key Points

  • The botched withdrawal in Afghanistan also crippled our intelligence channels.
  • Gen. Frank McKenzie says, ‘We’re at 1 or 2% of the capabilities we once had to look into Afghanistan.’
  • Al Qaeda and ISIS are actively growing and recruiting inside and outside the country.

We’re now 3 months on from the Biden administration’s botched withdrawal in Afghanistan; a withdrawal that killed 13 U.S. service members; stranded thousands of American citizens; and abandoned billions of dollars in military equipment. But the bad news isn’t over yet.

Thanks to Biden’s blunder back in August, we now have no idea what al Qaeda is up to. You know, Osama Bin Laden’s old buddies and orchestrators of the September 11th attacks that killed almost 3,000 Americans? Yeah —those guys. American intelligence doesn’t know what they are up to for the first time in 20 years.

Here’s what Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, said in an interview with the Associated Press: intelligence channels have been rolled back to almost nothing.

“We’re probably at about 1 or 2% of the capabilities we once had to look into Afghanistan,” McKenzie said. adding that this makes it “very hard, not impossible” to ensure that neither al Qaeda nor the Islamic State group’s Afghanistan affiliate can pose a threat to the United States.

According to Fox News, “McKenzie and other senior U.S. military and national security officials had said before the U.S. withdrawal that it would complicate efforts to keep a lid on the al Qaeda threat, in part because of the loss of on-the-ground intelligence information and the absence of a U.S.-friendly government in Kabul.”

And that’s exactly what’s happened. 

“The U.S. says it will rely on airstrikes from drones and other aircraft based beyond Afghanistan’s borders to respond to any extremist threats against the U.S. homeland,” Fox News adds. But, according to McKenzie, no drone strikes have been carried out since Biden’s retreat.

This creates the perfect climate for an al Qaeda resurgence —and it’s already happening. McKenzie told the Pentagon that the terrorist group is rebuilding in Afghanistan and, according to AP, “militants are coming into the country through its porous borders, but it is hard for the U.S. to track numbers.”

So we don’t have eyes on al Qaeda. Great. What about ISIS, General McKenzie?

“We should expect a resurgent ISIS. It would be very surprising if that weren’t the case. It remains to be seen that the Taliban are going to be able to take effective action against them.”

So, in conclusion: two terrorist groups that hate America are on the rise and actively recruiting.

Biden must have seen this coming. Or, more likely, he didn’t.