Senate candidate Kelly Tshibaka, who served in the national intelligence community in Washington, D.C. for several years, said on the Must Read Alaska Show on Monday that while she supports a withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, it has to be carefully planned so that the radical Islamists don’t resume control leadership of the country.
Tshibaka, running against Sen. Lisa Murkowski, said that Americans owe a debt of gratitude to the military men and women who have fought terror in Afghanistan and the Middle East over the past 20 years.
“This was not just a civil war, as some of our news reports are talking about,” she said. “This was related to us. That is why we have to say thank you to what our military personnel has done. In the last 20 years we have not had another 9-11.”
After leaving Alaska for college and serving as an intern for the late Sen. Ted Stevens, Tshibaka took a job with the Department of Justice and was involved in standing up the modern intelligence community, various groups and agencies with acronyms that are familiar and unfamiliar to everyday Americans.
“Let’s remember what is actually happening here as we rewind the clock, because I was on the inside,” she said. “Why did we do this? The purpose of this was to disrupt the radical terrorist organizations and the countries that harbor them. We call them Islamists. Afghanistan as our number one target. establishing peace there has cost us over 6,000 American lives and 20,000 Americans have been wounded.”
“We’ve dropped down to a couple of thousand people now, she said to help the people on the ground in Afghanistan keep peace in their own country,” so that was the purpose of being there,” Tshibaka said.
“Pulling out in the fashion that we did in the past couple of months, this wasn’t just Joe Biden’s decision. He consulted with intelligence personnel, diplomats, and Congress. The Democrats supported him, in fact Sen. Murkowski supported him with the assumption that the Administration had a viable plan in place for leaving. So we took a couple thousand troops out, just to send a couple thousand in again, essentially conceding that this plan was a complete failure,” she said.
Tshibaka reminded listeners that when President Barack Obama withdrew troops from Iraq in 2011, that led directly to the rise of ISIS and ISIL,” the transnational insurgent group based in western Iraq and eastern Syria. They are now far worse than anything Al Qaeda ever did, Tshibaka said.
“We can expect something similar to rise out of this disastrous transition,” she said. Creating a vacuum in leadership will breed further radicalism, she said.
Listen to interview with Tshibaka on the Must Read Alaska Show: