President Joe Biden has taken heavy criticism over his handling of the withdrawal of American forces from Afghanistan. This week, as evacuations from the country’s capital of Kabul continued following the Taliban’s rise to power, a terror attack on the local airport led to the deaths of 10 Marines, two soldiers, and a Navy corpsman, as well as dozens of Afghans, Fox News reported.
The resulting outcry has led to calls for accountability, but it isn’t just Biden who’s in the line of fire as the Taliban tightens its grip on Afghanistan. Fox was the first to report Friday that some members of Congress are now targeting another top White House official for impeachment over the botched withdrawal effort: Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
Articles of impeachment against Blinken were drafted up by Republican Reps. Ralph Norman (SC) and Andy Harris (MD).
“Secretary Blinken has failed to faithfully uphold his oath and has instead presided over a reckless abandonment of our nation’s interests, security, and values in his role in the withdrawal of American forces and diplomatic assets from Afghanistan,” the articles read, according to Fox.
GOP congressmen: Blinken failed
The two GOP congressmen also accused Blinken of having “failed to advise and counsel the President” as well as Congress and the American people of dangers that were reported by “his own diplomats and the intelligence community.”
“Under the Constitution of the United States of America, the Secretary of State is tasked with informing Congress and American citizens on the conduct of U.S. foreign relations,” Rep. Norman said in a statement.
“In Afghanistan, he failed to do so, leaving American citizens exposed in a city under the control of the Taliban,” the South Carolina Republican added.
“Secretary Blinken is also responsible for the safety of American citizens abroad and, in the case of danger, the safe and efficient evacuation of those Americans — which he has not done thus far,” Norman charged.
Blinken: Some Americans want to stay
As politicians back in Washington argue over who’s responsible for the chaos in Kabul, questions remain over just how many Americans are still trapped behind Taliban lines in Afghanistan, with National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan telling reporters as recently as last Sunday that the precise number was unknown.
However, Fox reported Thursday that Secretary Blinken had indicated some 6,000 Americans were said to be in Afghanistan as of Aug. 14, and that of those, 4,500 have since been evacuated.
With regard to the remaining 1,500 U.S. citizens still stranded halfway around the world, Blinken claimed that 500 had been given instructions on how to leave, while at least some of the other 1,000 Americans are actually choosing to stay behind.
“From the list of approximately 1,000, we believe that the number of Americans actively seeking assistance to leave Afghanistan is lower, and likely significantly lower,” the secretary claimed, according to Fox. “It’s hard to overstate the complexity and the danger of this effort,” he added.