tv America Reports With John Roberts Sandra Smith FOX News August 27, 2021 10:00am-12:00pm PDT
heroes. turn toward gratitude and honor. floyd holly, daniel greer, adam benjamin, those are names that i know. we will learn the names from yesterday and let's honor them. >> harris: amen. say th name. thank you. thanks for watching. let's go to "america reports." >> john: we begin with fox news alert. we are expecting an update from the white house as the nation mourns the 13 troops killed in afghanistan, this is big chance there will be more terror attacks to come. i'm john roberts in washington. >> sandra: i'm sandra smith in new york. the pentagon says there are specific credible attacks on kabul airport. there was one suicide bombing yesterday, not two, as first reported during the chaos and confusion after the blast.
despite the danger, the u.s. military continues evacuation efforts there with new urgency, president biden calling it a worthy mission during an event with israel's prime minister a short time ago. >> president biden: come with significant loss of american personnel. it is a worthy mission because they continue to evacuate folks out of that region, out of the airport, evacuated more than 12,000 additional people out of the airport in the last 24 hours. >> john: the president did refuse to take questions from the press. fox news strategic analyst jack keene, griff jenkins with the latest. >> sandra: we begin with jennifer griffin live with the lates >> jennifer: eminent terror
attacks against u.s. forces is ongoing. >> we're monitoring these threats very specifically. virtually in realtim jennifer newsom: two suicide bombers yesterday, adding there was not a second suicide bomber at the baron hotel. gunmen opened fire. the pentagon could not say if u.s. troops were killed by that gunfire. death toll of afghan rose to 130. >> can you say the taliban were not involved in this bombing, you are reliant on them for protection around the airport. are you ruling out them being involved because you are dependent on them right now? >> i didn't hear him put it that way. he said, adresa, asked was there a failure? obviously. >> in terms of isis-k how many
prisoners left and believed to have bye-bye released from prison and why were they not released before the u.s. pulled out, to some place like gitmo? >> clearly in the thousands. >> sandra: reports they shared lists of americans in afghan allies with the taliban are incorrect. >> can you give us clarification on the sharing of american citizens' information and sid information with the taliban. there were reports that u.s. officials were sharing that information. >> i don't think they are sharing information as you would say in the question like giving information. what information is very important right now is at the ground level to ensure that as people approach checkpoints, that those taliban checkpoint leaders have and understand who is coming.
>> they provide information and for the most part shg the taliban have been letting those people pass. >> sandra: jennifer griffin at the pentagon for us. john. >> john: bring in analyst and retired four-star general jack keene. start on what jennifer griffin was talking about when john kirby, this idea of the failure of taliban in securing people coming from the airport. yesterday mckenzie said he didn't see anything that suggested the taliban consciencely let them through and president biden didn't see collusion between the taliban and isis, they haven't ruled it out, what are you thinking at this hour? >> i can't rule it out either and it makes sense not to. either we just had a poor job of screening going on or they are
complicit. we can't trust these guys, they lie through their teeth. they enabled 9/11, they have killed and wounded, some catastrophic, including allies. they killed 66,000 afghan security forces and civilians. ho can we take their word on just about anything? >> sandra: general, i want your thoughts on the change that we learned of, just a couple hours since the pentagon come out and said that these deaths resulted from a single attack, one suicide bomber, rather than two attacks as we learned during the chaos yesterday? >> yeah, that's pretty significant. one suicide bomber was able to do that much damage, how horrific that is and it was a complex attack because i understand there was exchange of gunfire, too.
that is really quite staggering there to have that kind of breakdown and cause those kind of problems and challenges. my god. listen, our troops have done a great job of that airfield, to be commended. it is being overshadowed by stark reality of losing 13 troops and 130 afghans. getting out 112,000, i think that is the number we have now. very commendable and the department of state and everybody is doing that. we had a security lapse yesterday. you can't run from that, that is reality of it. i don't agree at alla, john, with this stubborn self-righteousness that the president seems to display about 31 august. why wouldn't we just adjust the date and get everybody out, if it takes a few more days to do that, so be it, tell the taliban that is what we're going to do.
they held this thing up, as well. we should at this point, could care less what their reaction is. we are in charge of our own destiny and have the power to ensure that destiny comes out the way we want it. >> john: perhaps the president's thinking illuminated by the statements of jen psaki that just got sent out. she said the president met this morning with national security team, including our commanders and diplomatss in the field. vice president joined by secure teleconference. advised president and vice president another terror attack is likely, but they are taking maximum force protection measures at the kabul airport. calculus by the president here, general, every hour that the u.s. military stays there at the airport, they are at heightened risk of another incident like that which happened yesterday. >> yes, i understand that certainly. the mission is to get our people
out. the means is to have our troops there and provide security to do that and there is risk associated with this mission. the mission isn't complete if we walk away and leave american citizens there and afghan partners by the tens of thousand, i would imagine, what this harsh reality is going to be. and it sends huge messages out there when the united states displays that kind of weakness to our adversaries and our allies who are already, you well know and reported on how frustrated they are with us over this whole ill-conceived, hasty withdrawal and implication it has had for their own national security and their own people. >> sandra: general keene, we had a live look at the white house, where the flags have been ordered to fly half staff after the death of those service members. just still just it hurts as a
nation when we see what has happened, general keane, first we've been able to speak with you since all this happened and learned of the 13 service members that died in this attack. we know that the airlift operations continue. it's a massive effort. the priority still to get americans off the ground there. general keane, walk us through what the next few days look like as we approach tuesday, august 31st and what the days following up to the deadline may look like? >> we have our hands full, we are trying to protect ourselves from another suicide bomber ark tack and certainly that is very real threat given the pronouncement of it and multiple sources now. that is all hands on deck to make certain that is not happening. obviously, try to expedite as many people as we possibly can through this process. at the same time, dealing with
inherent danger, just to be participating in the process. i'm talking about our citizens and our afghan partners. but this will come to an end on the 31st. the president has made up his mind that's it. when we leave afghanistan, given implication what has taken place here, taliban takeover, didn't set conditions in place to prevent, we now know the u.n. is reporting somewhere in the neighborhood of 8 to 10,000 terrorists in afghan, beyond the taliban. we have said this is going to become an epicenter for international terrorism and it is already on its way. the world is a more dangerous place as a result of these decisions by this administration, in my view. >> john: general, when the president finally came out yesterday. he vowed those who are behind the attack yesterday would pay.
listen to what he said. >> president biden: those who carried out this attack, as well as anyone who wishes america harm know this had, we will not forgive. we will not forget. we will hunt you down and make you pay. i will defend our interest and our people with every measure at my commend. >> john: it begs the question among many of the president's critics and others, that if we're pulling out of afghanistan lock, stock and barrel, how do you hunt people down and pay them back? >> it is going to be very difficult and highlights the problem we have with the growing international terrorist threat inside of afghanistan, how are we going to track that? this business of over the horizon, i think largely wishful thinking because we just lost all the afghan people we had a
connection to, lost security forces, which were our eyes and ears and as publicly reported, cia bases there exclusively focused on islamist terrorists, particularly the al qaeda and other intelligence agencies, as well. all that is gone. this is challenging. we are doggedly determined and running down people who kill americans and i do know that the united states military and intelligence service will focus on this. we ran down the guys who blew up the uss cole, embassies in africa and al qaeda and isis leadership. this is persistent, dogged determination to get to the end of it. we doll that. it is complicated now because of resources we pulled out of afghanistan, that is the flat truth of it. >> sandra: general keane, everything that happens in afghanistan has been complicated and gotten a whole lot more so. sir, thanks for joining us.
>> yeah, great talking to both of you. >> sandra: thanks. john, when it comes to whether or not we are going to have to go back in there, into afghanistan, panetta made headlines listen. >> we'll have to go back in to get isis, have to go back in which al qaeda resurrects itself, as they will with this taliban. they gave safe haven to al qaeda before and will probably do it again. >> sandra: cugo back to the secretary of state's own words on afghanistan in keeping forces there. may of 2020, john, remarkable moment in dead and good to get the general on. >> john: that statement from leon panetta, if we have to go back in, why are we getting out? >> sandra: i think a lot of people are asking that.
we've got more coming up. by the way, we are watching that hurricane and awaiting press conference at the white house. white house press secretary expected to step up, planned for one and pushed back to 1:45 eastern time. a lot of questions growing over safety of our soldiers and jen psaki saying that biden has been advised another attack is likely. we will bring that press briefing when it begins live. >> john: this tragedy hitting hard for veterans who served in afghanistan, watching 20 years of war end in disaster. we will hear from texas republican congressman, jake elzy, he served in afghanistan five times. he'll be up next. >> everyone in the military is completely heartbroken, frustrated, angry to see this happen. we want to see real leadership, that is what we want to see. the newday two and a quarter refi is the lowest in their history.
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>> sandra: the crisis unfolding in afghanistan painful for veterans who served in that country. they know better the risk our troops are still facing before coming to congress, our next guest logged 800 carrier landing as naval pilot, five in afghanistan. congressman jake ellzey joins us now. sir, thank you for being here on incredibly important day to this country and thank you for your service. coming off the deadliest day for the u.s. military in over a decade. your thoughts after hearing from the president yesterday. he did not take questions on afghanistan a moment ago when he was speaking at the white house. we anticipate an update shortly from his administration, your thoughts in this moment? >> our thoughts go out to those who gave their lives in this
all-volunteer force and the sacrifice they made for their fellow americans and afghanis who are certainly innocent in this. it is difficult to describe the amount of feelings that veterans like me and all americans at this time, both sides of the aisle, democrats and republicans feel about this. specifically when we know they were led into a trap at a single runway airport in the middle of a city, instead of going out of bagram. i flew out of al-baghdadi in 2013 and 2014. who made the decision to use kabul airport instead of bagram, that doesn't make sense to anything. relying on safe passage of taliban to get people out, that doesn't make sense. taliban are terrorists and we gave them a list of american names. we will find out who that is, too. leader mccarthy called for
speaker pelosi to call us into session. the governments have been called back into session. capitol building behind me is empty, it shouldn't be, we should be called back into session, compel this president to do what is right. missions don't end when he says they do, missions end when they are success sxfl we get all americans out. >> sandra: what do you want to see help next, congressman? >> come back into session and take back bagram and ensure our brave men and women, this is not for nothing. i want to encourage our veterans who fought there, they did not fight in vein and to show everyone in the world that america deals from a position of strength, instead of weakness. everything biden administration has done has been opposite of that. >> we are showing pictures of you in uniform during your service there. no one knows this situation better than you, sir, you are
saying how important it would have been to reopen bagram in order for this evacuation to have more safely taken place. you're talking about congressional oversight of decisions that were made that led to this deadly day and perhaps god forbid, more. why do you think that decision was ultimately made to close down that air base? you've had a lot of time to think about this. >> it's a question that everybody is asking and it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever from a force protection standpoint. the people who drove into the gate yesterday, 170 dead, they had a short pathway from the gate and kill 170 people, 15 american servicemembers. so if you had that in bagram, it is a remote area, you would have good force protection capability
with great road leading from kabul to bagram that is part of the effort must be made as soon as this is over. that light will glare harshly on the decision-makers there. you have academics running a war, this is direct result of that. we have seen the decision-makers are nowhere to be found. remember 1991, desert storm, general out front everyday. so long since we've seen secretary blinken, general milley, where are they? why are we hearing from john kirby? i want to hear from a decision-maker on why this stuff is going on and we are not extending deadline to get the others out. >> sandra: i hear the frustration in your voice. i want to put up on the screen veteran crisis hotline. the number 800-255. there are a lot of veterans having a very difficult time with this, finally, i'll just
ask you, sir, can you send a message to them knowing many are listening right now? >> you have saved thousands of lives in afghanistan, educated womens and children. gave the idea that america is a good place 273, and you can live in freedom and peace. joe biden has done a lot to destroy that, it is a very sad day. >> sandra: honor to speak with you, thank you for your service and thank you for being here today. >> thank you, sandra. >> sandra: john. >> john: you can certainly understand the way that the congressman and other veterans feel about all of that. so many people with so much effort into trying to bring afghanistan from where it was prior to 9/11 into the global community of nations. so much blood and sacrifice by american service members and to wholesale pull out and leave it all to fall apart and become haven for terrorism again, people have to rightly be
questioning among the leadership, the last 20 years all about. >> sandra: point well taken. we have heard from john kirby at the pentagon. why are we not seeing leadership at highest level on daily basis providing transparency on the ongoing operation. the defense second, secretary of state, the president himself, the vice president, for that matter, john, ultimate frustration from the congressman. thank him for joining us. the deadly bomb nothing kabul forcing top democrats to break their silence. some push for congress to come back from summer break. you just heard from the congressman, the latest from capitol hill coming up. >> john: and where the top biden official pointing fingers at each other. hands are tied by the previous administration. who is taking responsibility for the lives loaf? karl rove joins us with more reaction and bret baier will be
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landlords stating the cdc exceeded authority and only congress can extend that evikz ban now. >> sandra: and stunning new video showing extensive corrosion near the foundation of the kongedo building that collapsed in surfside, florida. that amount should have been obvious, 98 people died when the tower fell in june. >> john: wildfire in california forcing evacuation orders, telling tourists to stay home. the calleder fire 12% containd and forecasters say windss will pick up as humidity drops, making things harder. >> sandra: we are probably at this point moments away from the white house press briefing. jen psaki expected to take questions from reporters as the administration continues to deal with the biggest crisis of biden's presidency. they have shown a united front,
new reporting on finger pointing going on behind the scenes, something the west wing karl rove says needs to be fixed before the next disaster strikes. joining us on anchor bret baier. thanks to both of you being here, great to see you, karl and bret. karl, explain if this is happening behind the scenes and there is finger-pointing and blame being thrown around, what could be consequences of that be or the impact of that be on the ongoing situation in afghanistan? >> bret: i take this back and forth between various components of the biden administration as evidence they did not engage in systematic toefrt arrive at concrete plan where problems were examined in detail, big decisions for the president to be made. it was haphazard thing, get out of by august 31st. the
departments were left to themselves. they would have been operating off the same sheet of music and having resolved issues at the beginning, not the end. we've seen this, evidence of the special visa program for afghan allies, a disaster. no effort to -- shut down bagram air force base as jake ellzey said, big mistake. no -- sloppy process of planning and execution and we're seeing finger pointing as a result. >> john: yesterday the president held the news conference and peter doocy asked the question, the president on one hand accepting responsibility and blaming his predecessor, listen here. >> do you bear any responsibility for the way that things have unfolded in the last two weeks? >> president biden: i bear responsibility for fundamentally all that's happened of late. here is the deal, you know, i wish you would sayeh tavangar
these things, you know as well as i do that the former president made a deal with the taliban. get all american forces out of afghanistan by may one. >> john: bret, you know and mike pompeo, former secretary of state was articulating earlier today, that agreement we have right here was conditions based and number of conditions that had to be met before u.s. forces would come out, that is why forces did not come out last may 1, yet the president is saying no, this was donald trump's fault. what do you say? >> bret: that is right. point to that context, cucriticize the trump's dealing with the taliban and toefrt make a peace deal and a lot of republicans on capitol hill did. however, the ambassador said there is no obligation for the united states to withdraw troops
if the afghan partiess are unable to reach agreement or if the taliban show bad faith in any parts of this agreement. part of that agreement the bagram air base would be open and americans would leave and the military would be last to go. that is not what happened here. >> sandra: some are placing blame on the americans, saying they did not leave or ask to leave afghanistan soon enough. from roths wilson, acting ambassador to afghanistan. listen. >> we put repeated warnings every three weeks to americans going back to march or april. each one in stronger terms, leave now, leave immediately. people chose not to leave, that is their business and their right. >> sandra: it is their fault, karl? karl: it is their fault. let's depict them as cowards. the administration says we take
responsibility and trying to deflect every way it can. i agree with bret, the agreement and i wasn't a fan, it was conditions based. president biden was under no obligation to continue all agreements made or all decisions made by his pred sezor, lots of decisions and agreements he's ripped up, he's president, the commander-in-chief, he could have said, i don't agree with this agreement between the taliban and the united states government and i intend to do a different way and had all the authority in the world to do exactly that. >> john: bret, when you look at the agreement itself. condition number four permanent and comprehensive cease-fire had to be negotiated between the taliban and afghan government. clearly the taliban violated the terms of the agreement. why is the united states holding fast to it? >> bret: great question. let's put that agreement aside, we are where we are. the negotiations with taliban
for security of u.s. troops and continuing of this evacuation is really where this story heads and what is raising eyebrowos capitol hill and inside the pentagon, if you talk to people ark none mussily, the deputy leader of the taliban is hakani. if you go on the state department's rewards for justice website today, right here, this is a bounty for hakani. he is in kabul and hearing steer the taliban. we are dealing with taliban for security of u.s. troops and the evacuation ongoing, that is the thing that is really stunned a lot of national security experts. >> sandra: also important, in this moment, after a week where this nation has grieved over the loss of servicemembers, to hear
from those veterans, they are frustrated with what is happening. karl, you have heard from many of them, this is leroy petry, served in afghanistan, saying we abandoned our people, this was this morning. >> we abandoned them and it makes me angry. how long have we stood by our ally necessary germany, japan, korea, we made a commitment. we've been there 20 years, we should have honored that commitment and stayed for a lifetime if needed. >> sandra: the 13 service members who died in that attack yesterday, carl, we learned the names and grieve for their families. important to hear from the veterans, they have a lot to say on all of this. >> that is right. i was on vacation, yesterday i had lunch in rancho, mexico, in the restaurant is a plaque honoring that man.
i want him and everyone else to understand, for 20 years, you did the right thing. you sacrificed, bled and fought, and we stayed in afghanistan and made certain it was not a haven for terrorism. and between 65 and 70% of the afghan people are under the age of 25. they have no memory of anything except what they lived in, land desperately attempting freewayed, democracy and engage with the modern world. >> john: bret, you heard karl rove say 20 years united states military kept afghanistan from being haven of terrorism. leon panetta, we played the sound from a short time ago, he said, we'll have to go back in to get isis, probably go back in when al qaeda resurrects themselves, they will with taliban. they have given safe haven before and will probably do it again. which begs obvious question, what are we doing?
>> bret: right. we may physically leave. we are going to speedup this process and there will be a time when the music stops and all the military leaves. however, leon panetta is right. we're going to be back in there to play whack-a-mole with terrorist groups that pop up and are a threat to us. the war on the ground in afghanistan may be over for a short time, the war against terrorism is not over and really, if you talk to most people, it can't be. one more point, president biden in the meeting with israeli prime minister said we stand with you. we are allies with you, almost like he's trying to shore up world allies because they are questioning that. >> sandra: bret, i want to finish up with the "washington post" this morning, put it up on the screen. biden embrace with military that is grieving. rest assured when histories written, there will be enough blame for all to share.
for today, too much sorrow. karl and bret, thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> john: live look at the white house briefing room, we are waiting for press secretary jen psaki to update the situation in afghanistan, scheduled four minutes if now. we'll take it live when it starts. >> sandra: we will indeed 6789 the president's advisors are warning another attack is likely. americans at risk, our allies see this as a race against time. our next guest is working around the clock to help get people out now.
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dedicated to providing accurate reporting and analysis of the war on terror. bill, good to talk to you, thank you for joining us. the taliban has said in the wake of this monstrous bombing yesterday, which has killed more than 200 people, including 13 brave u.s. servicemembers, it will run down the people behind this. do we trust the taliban will investigate this given the fact their takeover of the country allowed these terrorist groups to flourish? >> the taliban is a terrorist group itself, this is what the biden administration have done, asked a terrorist group, that uses suicide tactics to protect american citizens and allies from another terrorist group that uses suicide bombers as a tactic and we expect that to work. we should not be shocked by what happened yesterday. the taliban has remained in bed with al qaeda, the alliance
between the taliban and al qaeda endured 20 years of war in afghanistan. the taliban and islamic state are enemies, but in some cases and documented in the united nations, sanctions monitoring report, the taliban, department amir, is the leader of the akani network and been connected to islamic state and used islamic state cutout at times. the united nations has signal intelligence to indicate that is the case. you can't trust the taliban to be a partner. this is a talking point being spread and needs to be put down. >> john: bret baier said couple moments ago there is $5 million award out for haqqani's arrest. mcmaster suggested the taliban
knew more about the attack than they were letting on, listen here. >> i would not be surprised if this isis-k is a front for the taliban who are organizing the attack against us. to humiliate us further after we surrendered to a terrorist organization. >> john: tough talk from the president we'll hunt them down and make them pay. there seems to be increased urgency to gets american forces out by the deadline of august 31, which does serve the taliban's purposes. >> exactly. look, the taliban does run the risk of raising islamic state stature by if it allows this attack. but at end, achieves getting them out and humiliated the united states in the process. as far as counterrorism operation goes, with what? the u.s. is gone, u.s. assets are out of afghanistan, no
longer an army to hunt them down, no longer director of the intelligence agencys and what afghan would support the u.s. now after u.s. abandoned them and said the afghan soldiers wouldn't fight when they lost over 66,000 soldiers fighting for their country. >> john: bill, real quick answer to this question. former defense secretary, former chief of staff, leon panetta say, we're going back into afghanistan because it will become a haven for terror again, is he right? >> i think he's right, i would argue it already is a haven for terror, al qaeda has been there. i don't think this president will go back into afghanistan, why would he leave if he thought he would have to go back? jauksz >> john: that is the question. bill roggio, thank you. sandra. >> sandra: the race to rescue
stranded americans continue, even under threat at kabul airport at this moment. how many americans are still stranded there? will some be left behind? the white house briefing is set to begin any moment, you can expect reporters to press this white house on just that. >> john: tried to press the president, but he wasn't taking question and look at flight of afghan allies and growing danger of retaliation at the hands of the taliban. stay with us. >> good thing, i will not die for -- what i did, i will never regret it because i have tried to help people. as someone who resembles someone else... i appreciate that liberty mutual knows everyone's unique. that's why they customize your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. oh, yeah. that's the spot. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty ♪ psoriatic arthritis, made my joints stiff, swollen, painful. tremfya® is approved to help reduce joint symptoms
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write down phone numbers for your parents, siblings and neighbors. pick a place to meet your family if you are not together and can't go home. remind your parents to pack an emergency supply kit. making a plan might feel like homework, but it will help you and your family stay safe during an emergency. >> sandra: jen psaki now at the white house, let's listen. >> sec. of state psaki: since july 3rd, a good sign. so far in august, we have gotten 12.5 million first shots into arms, 2 million more first shots than all of july, with several days left to go to add to the total. hit major milestone in effort to tocinate adolescents. they have at least their first shot. obviously more work to do, positive step forward.
want to note today the department of health and human services secretary announced $85 million in funding to improve mental health services for our nation's children and youth. >> sandra: she did not start out on afghanistan, john. she will obviously get to that and take questions. this is following the pentagon this morning saying there are credible threats against the kabul airport at this moment. evacuations continue. i say notable, she started talking about covid, not afghanistan. >> john: they are trying to change the subject, coronavirus or something else, get away from starting with afghanistan. >> sandra: we will jump in as soon as she starts addressing afghanistan, because john, we know there are many. griff jenkins is standing by. can you get in here before we go back to psaki?
>> ned price won't get the questions in. number of citizens trying to get out is in the hundreds, not the thousands, estimated 1000 americans are potentially stranded. they believe this hour that "vast majority, two-thirds, believed to be nearly or out of the country, and say dozens are wanting to remain behind," and they are not giving exact numbers see if we get them at the briefing. sandra. >> jessica: covid-19 health precaution including immediate covid-19 testing and vaccines on arrival. numerous other federal agency to ensure access to medical care and sufficient support to enable successful resettlement in the united states. the president is grateful for
the critical role, dedicated workforce, including military servicemen and women, diplomat and law enforcement and many others are and implementing this effort. this afternoon, the president and fema administration, chriswell will host a call with governors of louisiana and mississippi to discuss preparation for tropical storm ida, expected to make landfall on sunday. you may know, sunday is the 16th anniversary of hurricane katrina, which claimed 1800 lives. fema administration met with governor bill edwards and state emergency management director to discuss mobilizing what could be a dangerous storm hitting region heavily impacted by the delta variant and the president will track this and receive updates through the weekend.
>> you had a statement out there -- sober language -- national security advisor, likely. i know you're limited, is there more specificity you can offer on what that threat is and secondly, what does it mean for the evacuation that the intel in any way and changes that need to be made limit or restrict ability to continue or get much done with the mission through august 31. >> sec. of state psaki: what i conveyed was national security team the president met with this morning, advised president and vice president another terror attack in kabul is likely.
they are taking maximum force protection measures at kabul airport and surrounding areas with our forces, as a result. i will note that the department of defense just gave a briefing this morning and echo some of the descriptions they offered. the threat is ongoing and active. it is, troops are still in danger, that continues to be the case everyday they are there. this is the most dangerous part of the mission, this is retrograde period of the mission. that means this is period of time the military commanders on the ground and forces begin to move, not just troops home, but also equipment home. that is often a very dangerous part of any mission, but in this case, they are doing that while there is an ongoing and acute threat from isis-k. that is what they are facing. i would note, since you gave me the opportunity, the military made clear to the president, they are committed to continuing
this mission, to saving lives, to evacuating more people from the country over the coming days and completing their mission by the 31st. what it will mean as they move to this retrograde phase, reduction in numbers over the next couple days. we have been putting out numbers twice a day, so you can see how we are evacuating people out of the country. those numbers will go down in the next couple days and you should anticipate that. that is as result of the retrograde process that needs to take place, but also i will note force protection is front and center and vial to the mission. >> one more, president biden told our reporters in the oval office that during this meeting with the prime minister, they talked to dr. fauci today about getting booster shots -- what information he has now that
justifys the possibility of doing that correction? >> sec. of state psaki: the president would rely on guidance by the cdc. that guidance is eight months. that has not changed f. they were to change their guidance based on data, he would abide by that. for people watching at home and you reporting, nothing has changed about the eight-month timeline as relates to the boosters. >> why did the conversation happening to trigger -- >> sec. of state psaki: i obviously wasn't sitting in the meeting having the discussion with them on this. as israel has taken step of doing six-month boosters and the president referenced advice from the prime minister, we make our own ark sessment based on experts in the united states and nothing changed on the front. more likely reference to that.
we have ongoing discussion with health and medical experts about what they look at. >> on afghanistan, i want to get an update on the president's plan, if he has any to -- troops that remain -- return. >> sec. of state psaki: hasn't been announcement by the u.s. military about the timing of that, i can reiterate what i conveyed yesterday, the president will look for any opportunity to honor the servicemen and women who lost their lives yesterday. i don't have anything to announce at this time. >> there has been reporting around taliban requests diplomatic -- from the united states, could you tell about what -- here at the white house about whether or not that is appropriate and how or if that would happen after -- >> sec. of state psaki: i would say first that we are looking at ways and refer to secretary of state and state department here to continue to engage. i'll note something i said, i
know this wasn't your question, to get it in. the president did direct the secretary of state to continue diplomatic efforts with international partners to secure third country nationals and afghans with visa to leave after the u.s. military presence ends. part of that is having coordinated approach and engagement with the taliban. in order to continue to evacuate any american citizen who was not prepared to leave, who wants to leave, third country nationals and afghans with visa, we need to coordinate with the taliban. that does not translate into presence on the ground. we are pulling our presence out by the 31st, that has not changed. >>-- we can't trust the taliban with american security. in terms of the attack yesterday -- i guess my question is coordination with the taliban best of the options right now
or -- military and white house only option given -- >> sec. of state psaki: maybe both. i will say, i won't get into semantic debate, it is worth repeating as often as i can, we don't trust the taliban. this is not about trust. there is reality on the ground. the reality is taliban control large swaths of afghanistan, including area surrounding the perimeter of the airport. that is our option to get individuals eligible for the range program the united states has out. we have evacuated more than 105,000 people as result of those coordinated efforts of getting people out. but i will say that as the department of defense noted earlier today, clearly something went wrong here in the process. we saw the isis-k attack occur yesterday. we don't have additional
information to suggest that it was intentional or anything along those lines, a question that was asked yesterday. clearly, there was a break in the security process here, no question about that. >>-- about the security threats -- in the world. this has always been something the president -- [indiscernible] -- what you have seen over the course of the last several days that makes this moment different than what the president was citing? >> sec. of state psaki: i can't get into specific details from here, the reason we put this out publicly the way we did. yesterday there was an attack by terroristss that killed 13 members of the u.s. military. it is important for us as the government to be clear about what threat our u.s. forces are
facing on the ground as they continue to implement the mission. the threat is acute, it is ongoing, our troops are in danger and taking the steps they are taking to save lives and evacuate people because of their commitment to the mission and we felt it was important for people to understand that. >> i wanted to ask about the statement you put out. in light of yesterday's attack, troops are taking maximum force protection measures at kabul airport. what resources are available that they didn't have yesterday, same number of troops and same amount of equipment? >> sec. of state psaki: any resources they need and request from the president, they will be granted. i will not get into additional details. >> does the president have plans to speak to the families of the fallen service members? >> sec. of state psaki: how this process works, next of kin notification happen by the department of defense typically in person to next of kin, i believe they gave update this
morning. it is ongoing, the president wouldn't make a call or reach out until the process is completed and would be up to next of kin and family to determine if they are prepared to receive a call from the president of the united states. i think it is important to note that this may be the worst day of their lives. they may or may not feel they are ready to talk to the united states or want to talk to the president of the united states and that is their choice. i expect once any calls are completed, we'll provide an update. >> i want to know if the white house has any reaction to the republican lawmakers who are calling on the president to resign over this? >> sec. of state psaki: well, nancy, i have to say that seeing some of those occur or be called for or put out on twitter, the backdrop here is the u.s. men and women of the military deployed on the ground are bravely continuing to implement mission to save lives on the ground. american citizens, afghan partners, many people that some
of the same individuals are calling for us to evacuate. yesterday they lost 13 of their own. the president made absolutely clear we are going to hunt down, go after and kill the terrorists who are responsible. everyone should be supportive of that. >> time for -- >> sec. of state psaki: correct, go ahead. >> thank you, the president says we will hunt you down and make you pay, what does that look like? will he order a mission to kill the people responsible or be satisfied if they are captured and brought to trial? >> sec. of state psaki: i think he made clear yesterday he does not want them to live on the earth anymore. >> the u.s. is coordinating with the taliban about security for the next couple days, people running security for the taliban in kabul are terrorists with millions of dollars of bounties on their heads. will we try to bring those known terrorists to justice before we leave the country?
>> sec. of state psaki: our focus right now is on doing everything we can to get the remaining american citizens who want to depart out of the country. to get our afghan partners out of the country. this is not a preferred relationship or a situation that we would have designed if we had started from scratch. i think that is very clear. right now we need to coordinate, that is our focus next couple days. >> you said you think we will have a great deal of leverage over the taliban after we leave. do you think we will have more leverage with no troops on the ground in afghanistan than with thousands of troops on the ground in afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: to be clear, one of the steps directed to take in my statement this morning, engage with our international partners to determine what the path forward looks like. there are key components here. taliban will want a functioning airport, so do we. that is something we need to
work with our international partners on, we will update you with more. >> the commitment to make those who are responsible for yesterday's attack pay, the president committed after american troops leave afghanistan, he would be willing to send in american troops in some covert form to complete that mission to kill those responsible. >> sec. of state psaki: i will not get into details on what hunting down and going after the terrorists who killed 13 servicemembers will entail or detail and i don't think the department of defense will either, that commitment will remain until it is done. >> troops to go back into afghanistan -- >> sec. of state psaki: i will not get into the detail of what that would require, commitment remains until it is done. >> so it is clear, couple days away from august 31 deadline, is the white house commitment all americans who want to leave afghanistan will be able to leave before that date? >> sec. of state psaki: that is what we are focused on and committed to and working toward.
>> diplomatic effort, the deadline is tuesday, what can you tell us about the talks, secretary of state to undertake, how close of an graument agreement will we have -- >> sec. of state psaki: that is not what we are predicting, we are not predicting diplomatic presence on the ground in afghanistan. we're talking about coordinate withing our international partners in order to determine what the path forward looks like. we will continue to evacuate third country nationals, afghans with visas and any american citizens who have not departed because they are not prepared to depart after that period of time. coordination with international partners and continued engagement in some capacity with the taliban. >> are you suggesting there will not be diplomatic presence in afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: we have been clear, pulling out by 31st, haven't made any other
assessment. >> the president has all legal authority he needs to -- isis-k. is it the white house's view the president could lean on the -- 9/11 to do so? >> sec. of state psaki: i can assure you the president and military feel they have all authority to attack isis-k. >> members of g-20 are pushing for a special meeting on afghanistan, italy, is there discussion on having date for special meeting on afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: great question. it would be coordinated through the state department, jennifer, i would refer you to them, they will have more detail on planned engagement in the coming days. >> the oval office talked about how if diplomacy failed with iran, looking at other options, what other options might moon? >> sec. of state psaki: any president maintains range of options.
our objective and first priority and focus on diplomatic path forward, that is where we're putting our energy this point in time. go ahead. >> there have beg your pardon a lot of questions about this, i want to try to get clarity around after august 31, for people who still be on the ground in afghanistan and want to get out, does the u.s. right now have a vision of a process they will use to get people out after august 31? what is the commitment after august 31? is it absolute, if you want to get out of afghanistan and you are -- you help the u.s. military, you are an afghan, you will be able to get out? if you're a greencard holder or someone wanting out, is the u.s. guaranteeing that you will be able to get out? >> sec. of state psaki: i don't think we can guarantee, what we can do, work toward diplomatic
efforts with international partners to secure means for third country nationals, afghans with visa, eligible for the programs and any american citizen to leave the country after the u.s. military presence ends. there is means of mechanisms for that, conversations are ongoing. our commitment does not change on august 31, obviously we need to figure out the operational mechanism, the conversation underway. >> question about green-card holders in afghanistan, are they prioritized right now or only u.s. citizens? are green-card holders not being prioritized at this point? >> sec. of state psaki: you can note from the numbers, the last 24 hours, more than 10,000, i think higher than that, people out, just over 300 were american citizens, passport holders, i should say, rest were afghan, green-card holders they are
still getting out of the country, yes. >> biden administration filled with people with long experience with afghanistan, many dating back years, if not decades. including the president. most of that time the taliban was a sworn enemy, the enemy against who we fought. is there recognition inside the administration of the irony, grim irony of having to being in a position to rely upon and coordinate with and have negotiations with the adversary they fought, many of them fought for two decades? >> sec. of state psaki: irony is far too light of a term. the reality is here, to field earlier question, this is the circumstance we're faced with. the taliban controls large swaths of the country, that is not what anyone participated this point in time. to get american citizens out, afghan partners out, green-card
holders out, we need to coordinate with the taliban. been able to evacuate 105,000 people as a result. not only place in the world we have to work with adversaries or people who have been enemies at times in order to further u.s. national security objective, part of what you have to be flexible to do when running the united states or national security teams are looking to achieve objective around the world. >>-- inside the administration and meetings you're in, kind of frustration or whatever you call it, with the situation they find themselves in? >> sec. of state psaki: okay, i understand your question, having sat in meetings, not a lot of time for self-reflection right now, focus is on the task the hand. as we talk about threats acute and ongoing we are focused on that and information incoming.
i wouldn't say there is a lot of focus on self-reflection at this point in time. go ahead. >> what is the white house's reaction to the supreme court yesterday overturning the cdc targeted eviction moratorium, will they issue a new moratorium and what is the white house doing to address what could become a real eviction crisis for renters? >> sec. of state psaki: president biden would support congressional -- and the supreme court clearly outlined that as sole way moratorium could remain in effect. i think it is important to remember our objective here, to keep as many people around the country in their homes as possible. federal legislation is one way to do that, the evictior moratorium had in place and issuing month to month is one way to do that. era funding through the american
rescue plan is another way to do that. we have asked and put out today the department of treasury and secretary of hud, sent letter calling on all governors, mayors, county officials to put in place their own moritoria. it has same impact, it is preventing people from being kicked out of their home and there is funding to get that done. the place that our responsibility we continue to focus on is working to eliminate any red tape that exists. we made announcements earlier this week that allows renters to attest to economic circumstances to make it easier. we have seen impact in some states. we will continue to look for ways to ease burden and get access to funding. >> you said biden would support another moratorium, will he actively urge congress to take up a vote and pass or issue one? >> sec. of state psaki: he's
conveyed that, it is important to go back, not to beat a dead horse here, not miss the forest through the trees here, trying to prevent people from being evicted from their homes. if there were enough votes, it would have happened. it hant -- hasn't happened we're looking at how to achieve the objective. not everyone, people calling for extension to keep people in their homes. seven states have taken the steps, more states can take the steps, they have funding they need. >> refugees from afghanistan have been landing at the airport and sit on airplanes for hours at a time, with no or limited access to food, is this something the white house is aware of and are you making efforts or taking lead on relocated afghans? what does the white house think about conditions right now and what are you doing?
>> sec. of state psaki: we are working to improve conditions for people coming to the country. our security vetting process is so thorough that even as people are vetted before they come, go through a background check we implement checks including confirmation, in some cases, on landing. we check manifest and limited number of cases, we have vetting processes that may be be unresolved. very limited, may lead to a delay in an individual being held on the plane so we can have that process seen through. ensuring people are treated humanely coming to the united states, they is access to food and water, something we're committed to and will continue to improve conditions. i think the reason why these planes are waiting is also an important part of the context here, as well. >> you addressed the republican criticism of the president, but
what is your message, white house message to democrats who expressed concern about the withdrawal from afghanistan? do you have a message or response -- >> sec. of state psaki: a specific piece? >> congresswoman suzanne lyles said it is clear we cannot put americans in danger for unwinnable war. it was egrejuously mishandled. what is your response to that? >> sec. of state psaki: i don't have any direct response to any member of condition. it is easy to throw stones or be critic from the outside. it is hard to be in the arena and make decisions. the decisions commander-in-chief have to made include difficult options. these were the options, send more troops to potentially lose their lives, that is option. some support that, that is their prerogative. you pull out and don't put anyone at risk, and you don't
evacuate more than 105,000 people, that is another option. the option he's chosen based on recommendation with his military commenders and advisors on the ground is to implement evacuation that has saved lives potentially of more than 105,000 people certainly at risk of men and women serving in the military, as we saw by the events of yesterday. that's the choice he made. >> you guys have said repeatedly -- idea only two choices. what evidence do you have there weren't other choices that could have been made? >> sec. of state psaki: what is the other choice anyone is offering? >> for example, the government in may, look, we're going to start a mass evacuation of all of the u.s. personnel, we are going to put out an announcement that says we advise all of our
afghan allies to start evacuating, as well, it would be show of no confidence in the government. i'm not suggesting that is the right way to have gone, but it is another option and i'm sure 10 other options i haven't thought of. why do you present these only two options. >> sec. of state psaki: there are other options, there are consekwens. take your example, if we had evacuated and moved in c-17, 6000 troops, i think what you are suggesting and implemented in may. what would have happened, threat on u.s. forces would have increased at that point in time. isis-k. >> been operating in capitol that wasn't overrun by the taliban. >> sec. of state psaki: how do you know that? >> the taliban wasn't near kabul at that points. >> sec. of state psaki: it is easy to playback seat, look what
could have happened. i think we've been clear on a couple of things, i will say. no one anticipated, including on the outside, that is the afghan government would have fallen at the pace they fell. the president and members of the national security team have spoken to that, as well. we didn't anticipate the afghan national security forces would have folded as they did. we didn't anticipate that. as a result of that happening, we saw chaotic situation just two weeks ago, you can always, my point in response to the question, there are consequences to difficult choices and decisions. that is what faces you as commander-in-chief and that was larger point i was trying to make. go ahead. >> thank you, jen. can you tell us about the servicemembers -- gender, age, anything you can give us? >> sec. of state psaki: i wouldn't be in a position to share details about individuals,
that would come from the department of defense and notification of next of kin are ongoing. go ahead. >>-- [indiscernible] -- are you confident that the president -- booster shot no scientific -- >> sec. of state psaki: it was approved by the f.d.a. and recommended in the united states, gold standard of this data. >> last 24 hours we understand 12,000 people evacuated out of afghanistan. you can't get specific on what security plans are in place, but generally speaking, can you say if protocol or plans on the ground have changed to enable
evaktuations safely? >> they ark just and make adjustments on the ground. commanders on the ground do in order to keep troops safe, in order to successfully evacuate more people from the country. we will not get into details from here. it is important to note and reiterate, you will see reduction in numbers over the next couple days, they are beginning retrograde process. they will be mindful of keepingly men and women in the military safe to the degree they can. >> we have seen images of servicemembers entering human barrier holding people back in kabul, do you know if that is still happening? seems like very vulnerable -- >> sec. of state psaki: just so i understand -- >> images of them conforming groups from getting to a certain
area, is that still happening or one change implemented? >> sec. of state psaki: point you to department of defense for any operational changes they can speak to and i predict they will not speak to many in detail. what i will note and refer to something general mckenzie said in terms of illustrating what is happening here. in order to do security screenings necessary, people have to get quite close. members of the military have to get close to individuals they are screening. they have screened tens of thousands of people, some images may reflect that. i would point you to them for specifics they can provide. go ahead. >>-- health and human services office told us they are receiving reports -- covid vaccine cards how concerned this could threaten the nation's progress against the virus?
>> sec. of state psaki: i would not state that as our level of concern. we are concerned about fake vaccine cards, i do not have assessment how broad it is, i would have to check and get an assessment of that. >> two questions about the president's commitment -- often says the democratic congressman seth bolton told hunter walker, colleague, "even if you agree with the biden administration decision to withdraw, the way they handled this has been a total disaster," i don't think we can guarantee that, which is it? >> sec. of state psaki: i think the question was about individuals who are still there, they are not prepared to leave or other afghans or others who may want to depart, i know you care about context. >> there is commitment to
evacuate and there is a deal with the taliban? >> sec. of state psaki: i don't understand what your question is. >> the airport evacuation was disorganized and criticized, is there a plan behind the commitment to evacuate remaining americans? >> sec. of state psaki: the fact we've evacuated 105,000 people, including and i can give you the latest numbers, i know the state department is giving or about to give. of those evacuated since august 14th, evacuated 5100 u.s. citizens, likely more, we've received confirmation within the last day, 300 additional americans were evacuated and 500 american citizens that we are working with who want to leave and we are communicating and in direct contact with them. that speaks to our commitment. go ahead. >> my question on the topic, yesterday the transparency group released secret service -- one
e-mail said secret service agents bitten every single day from march 1 to march 8. march 9th briefing, you only described one biting instance to us and describe the dogs as being whisked back to delaware on preplanned trip to family frnds. that is not the world's most important story, but it is significant, we expect accurate information for minor stories, why is this a misleading account presented to us, if we can't get honest -- issues like afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: i know you do keep the dog, thank you for that. major had challenges adjusting to life in the white house. he's been receiving additional training and spending time in delaware, where the environment is more familiar to him and he's more comfortable. i do not have additional
specifics, that speaks to where major is located, to be fully transparent and your ongoing interest in the dog. go ahead. >>-- quarantine, are these people being vaccinated? percentage of afghans -- 5% vaccinated. >> sec. of state psaki: there had was a story out earlier today, i can give you more detail on it. let me find the detail. i can tell you basically individuals who come in to the united states are offered a vaccine, those coming in on parole as parolees, it is required, it is condition of their parole to the united states. we have made this available and are looking for ways to expand access to other places where individuals are landing to provide it as quickly as possible in landing.
in terms of what steps we are taking, everyone is tested upon arrival and steps are taken if individuals test positive to quarantine them. obviously american citizenss are asked to quarantine and like any other american citizens, that would be something they would do on their own. go ahead. >> the president plans to hunt down the people responsible for the attack, how do you prevent that coming open -- terrorist groups in afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: again, i think the military and the national security team that serves the president, has enormous capabilities and is pursuing range of missions at the same time. the one they are undertaking in afghanistan is front and center in the news right now. we are consistently looking and tracking down and hunting terrorists around the world where they are, this is part of that effort. that effort is ongoing, the president made the decision to
bring our men and women home is because the terrorist threat has metastasized. this are other parts of the world and this goes to earlier question, we don't have military presence on the ground, a diplomatic presence on the ground, but we're still tracking counterrorism, libya, yemen are two examples of that, that will continue. >> isis-k want to or have capability to attack americans domestically in the united states or just in afghanistan? >> sec. of state psaki: that is not an assessment we've made at this time. >> is today your last day? >> yes, it is. >> thank you for your services in the media. [applause] >> decided too many seats in the briefing room. >> sec. of state psaki: there are a lot of seats, i will look into that. >> to ensure iran never develops nuclear weapon, president biden told the israeli prime minister today, well, we're putting
diplomacy first and seeing where that takes us, but diplomacy fails we're ready to turn to other options. can you reveal what are the other options? >> sec. of state psaki: as i said earlier, any president has a range of options at their disposal, i will not outline those from here. our first preference is on diplomatic path and pursuing diplomatic path forward, that is where our energies lie at this point in time. go ahead. >>-- eviction issue? >> sec. of state psaki: that is up to speaker and leaders in congress to determine. he would support and be happy to sign, love to sign legislation into law. but there are ways to achieve same objective, that is what we're pressing on. >> and usually give us a week ahead, you have details for what the president is doing? >> sec. of state psaki: maybe i skipped that, hold on, i didn't
mean to do that. apologys, thank you for the prompt. everyday, some details will be finalized over the coming days as you can expect, it is a bit fluid. everyday this weekend and next week the president will meet with national security team to discuss intelligence and diplomatic updates on the situation in afghanistan, i noted at the top, he will receive regular updates on the hurricane and we will provide updates to you as they happen. next week the president will welcome president of ukraine to the white house to visit from the united states unwavering support in the face of russia's ongoing -- tackle corruption and implement reform agenda based on shared democratic values. on friday, he will deliver remarks on the jobs report and building the economy back better. as we is skr have details, we
will provide them. get to them in a second, it's been a while. >> to follow-up there, i want to return to the biden area of continuing a forever war, both republican and democratic administration polling shows majority of the country opposed and withdrawal and the idea no matter what it will be messy. given the events of the past two weeks, does the president feel that u.s. military personnel will put in the best position to carry out their mission on the ground? >> sec. of state psaki: i would say first anything the u.s. military has asked for as they are working to implement this mission, they have been granted and i think they would confirm that. the president asked them that at the end of every meeting. i would note something said yesterday at department of
defense briefing, which is that they know and this is why the men and women of the military are so ark mazing and incredible. they know they are putting themselves in harm's way when they implement missions like these and they put together plans that have forced posture protection front and center. when dealing with a real threat from isis-k, of course events like yesterday unfortunately happen. >> yesterday, the president said that he made the assessment after talking to military advisors that bagram air force base was not much of a value add. i'm curious, because general milley said if we were to keep bagram and the embassy going, forces would exceed what we had. with that decision about leaving, is that because there wasn't value-add or would have
required sending more troops? >> sec. of state psaki: bagram was enormous base that has significance distance from kabul, significant is all relative. it is far away from kabul. would have required quite a presence to protect and wasn't located in place that would have been as effective in evacuating people who are located in kabul. >> the president said yesterday "we have greater threats coming out of other countries, heck of a lot closer to the united states," is there anything you can tell us what countries he was referring to, in particular, as regard to afghanistan, alarming statement. >> sec. of state psaki: i think he was intended to von va what he conveyed about the metastasizing threat from range of terrorist organizations that have greater capacities around the world and how we need to
keep our eyes focused on those as being root reason why he brought our men and women home. go ahead. >> [indiscernible] -- >> 11 marines, one navy one corps man killed yesterday. you would not think we are a nation grieving. it struck me, questions about the president's dog, evictium moratorium and smiles and laughter about a reporter's last day in the room, all fine on other days, that struck me as very difficult and unusual, especially for those families who are grieving. we learn the names of those servicemen who died in the attack yesterday and knowing that what jen psaki just told the nation, according to the president's national security team, there is another terror attack in kabul, that is likely,
threat is ongoing, troops are still in danger. john. >> john: let's bring in chris wallace. there was tough talk from the podium regarding this peter doocy said we will hunt them down and make them pay mean? jen psaki said the president made it clear he doesn't want them to live on the earth anymore. if you pull out of afghanistan, how do you go back in and deal with these people, the blow the president wants to see them dealt? >> chris: obviously our intelligence assets will be sharply diminished, i don't know if they will be gone. we won't publicize if they are americans or not u.s. soldiers conceivable cia, para-military. there are plenty ways to go after people, drones, air strikes, whether it is cruise
missiles, plenty of ways to do it. i thought two main points, two news points she made today i thought were interesting. top of the briefing jen psaki said we are now entering the most dangerous phase of this mission, the retro-grade phase. we have known we are getting into this delicate period in the last four days, we are trying to get as many people out as we can, same time, trying to draw all of our military abruptly, 5000 troops out. ideally, you get the last evacuatee and last american soldier on a plane, last plane to leave afghanistan, one thing she said. because of the fact we're in draw-down phase, retrograde, there will be fewer evacuations we've been doing 20,000, 12,000, the number will be getting smaller in the last few days, we'll be in the process of
pulling up stakes at kabul airport in addition to trying to evacuate people. >> sandra: we had a congressman jake ellzey, on the program, he served five tours in afghanistan, he said why are we getting spokespeople? fair question. we hear from john kirby at the pentagon and jen psaki at the white house. to your point about what she just said, we are entering the most dangerous part of this mission. we just had the deadliest day for the u.s. military in over a decade yesterday. so as far as the messaging and the communication, do you expect and should there be increased level of communication from our highest levels of government in the final dayss of the mission? >> chris: we had the president for the better part of a half-hour yesterday, not only making a very heart-felt
statement, also taking a number of questions, that was just at 5:00 yesterday, 5:30 yesterday afternoon. they can't -- >> sandra: where is blinken and austin? >> chris: they got to be doing their job. >> sandra: fair question, where is second of state, the defense secretary to lead us in this crucial moment? >> chris: well, you know, anybody can criticize what they want, this week we had national security advisor, earlier this week the secretary of state, we had the president yesterday for half an hour, you know, i think woo -- we're getting most of the answers we need. i remember covering the white house and john, you probably remember when you covered the white house, i spent six years in the briefing room. you don't tell us how to cover the stories, we won't tell you how to do your communication strategy. >> john: in previous
administrations, if the president waited six hours or longer after that many u.s. servicemembers were killed, he would have been roasted, i don't think there is any question about that. cut number four, leon panetta looking beyond horizon of august 31, he believes u.s. forces will go back into afghanistan, listen how he put it. >> we'll have to go back in to get isis, probably have to go back in when al qaeda resurrects itself, as they will with this taliban. they gave safe haven and probably will again. >> john: u.s. troops were in afghanistan, we are not out the door and terror attack against u.s. interests, what is it going to be like after we leave and what about the idea we'll have to go back in, if have you to go back, why leave in the first place? >> chris: it is the form we go
in. the question, look, big question of policy that has been debated, a lot of people think we should have kept a big presenc donald trump in 2016 made a deal with the taliban to get out. joe biden campaigned in 2020 on the same point. when joe biden came in vice president in 2009, he very much felt we should not surge the troops. remember, you may have been covering the white house then, barack obama decided to send tens of thousands of troops there, biden was fwaens that and felt we should have smaller footprint, a counterrorism footprint, not sure we will have that. that is the kind of thing leon panetta is talking about and a lot of this maybe not as effective, but a lot can be done by remote control. think of the people we took out in the -- >> john: i just -- >> chris: between pakistan and
afghanistan. >> john: i think how many times we did it by remote control in the late 1990s until 2001 and it didn't work. >> chris: yeah, you know, we spent 20 years there, what we did in afghanistan didn't end up working, spent 20 years building government and military and they collapsed in 11 days. >> john: good points. >> sandra: chris wallace, thanks. bring in admiral william fallon, admiral and former commander. sir, welcome, thank you for being here. in fact, today we learned after yesterday, it was reported to us, the american people, there was two attacks yesterday there in afghanistan that led to the casualties. we now know that it was one. it seems details on the ground continue to change. we'll get your thoughts in this moment as we just heard from the white house.
sir, can you hear us? you're on the air. >> i've got you now. thanks. i think it is pretty sad, very discouraged at events that transpired recently, particularly yesterday with the loss of life. i think that we could have done something quite different. the so-called deal that was negotiated with the taliban when we know they are unlikely to keep their word and as part of that, we apparently gave up our leverage, we decided to pull out of bagram, the on-site field provide air support for afghan troops we've been doing all along, seems to me that we shouldn't be surprised at chaos going on, it is very tragic, when you get in a situation like this, we are basically in the
alamo trying to defend ourselves as we pull out, it's not very good situation. i doubt we have the kind of intelligence on the ground we'd like to have regarding what is coming at us and large crowds ready made for terrorists, probably just delight in this situation. >> john: this is john here, thank you for joining us, apropos call sign for where he is, call sign is fox. failure and security that led to that horrific event yesterday. listen what jen psaki said at the press briefing a short time ago. >> sec. of state psaki: i will say, i won't get into semantic debate, it is worth repeating as often as i can, we don't trust the taliban. this is not about trust. there is reality on the ground, the reality is the taliban control large swathss of afghanistan, including the area surrounding the perimeter of the
airport. by necessity, that is our option to coordinate with to get american citizens out, to gets our afghan partners out, individuals eligible for the range of programs the united states has out. we have evacuated 105,000 people as result of those coordinated in large part of the coordinated efforts of getting people out. i will say that as department of defense noted earlier today, clearly something went wrong here in the process. we saw the isis-k attack occur yesterday. we don't have additional information to suggest that it was intentional or anything along those lines, which was a question asked yesterday. clearly there was a break in the security process, no question about that. >> john: admiral, whether pacific commander or head of com some years back, she said we don't trust the taliban, entrusting them to security and
this happens, what is your take on what happened yesterday? >> big picture, you can't all the information you get in the intelligence circuits. some is good, some is not good. and in my experience, you take in the information, you weigh it, you make a judgment call and you go from there. i'm mindful of the fact 20 years ago, we went into afghanistan precisely because the landlords at that time, the taliban, allowing terrorists groups, in that case, al qaeda to run amuck and use sanctuarys to perpetrate their criminal acts around the world. 20 years later, back in basically the same situation again. very difficult and i don't think we should be this way. i think we should have had different policy in terms of the pull out, i think effectively, our combat operation ceased some time ago, we're there to help
and respond to the afghan armed forces as they needed help and to be there with eyes and ears and pick up on information available to prevent things like what happened yesterday. no idea what sources may have had. i know there's been raised elevation, threat elevation, no idea what the basis of that is, it is ready-made for terrorism, with very large crowds, a lot of chaos. there is questionable gang of folks in the taliban that have surrounded the airport to keep people out of the airport. who knows what their priorities, seem to me probably to keep people from getting in so they can get out. >> sandra: we pray for those in harm's way. admiral, what the white house told us, the national security team is taking a maximum-force protection measures at the kabul airport. psaki asked for additional detail and she said anything they are asking for, they are
getting. to pick your brain on that, as we move forward into the most dangerous part of the mission, what exactly would that entail as we now know this is the part of the mission where the troops start leaving, the equipment starts leaving and it gets very dangerous on the ground there. >> couple of key decisions have been made, maybe they have been made, that is just how long do you continue to allow or try to allow people to come in from the perimeter to get evacuated. primarily trying to get out of the country. at some time, they will have to decide that's it, cut it off and retro-grade is the term they use to get our equipment and people out of there. it is not going to be pretty, any way you look at it, from my view. it is something that is already underway and pretty clear it will not be turned around. i don't think it would do good
to stuff additional troops into that place, there is not much they can do other than provide additional guns, but they will have to come out of there pretty soon. i think it's, we're going to have to hold on and they will do their best. i'm sure they are trying to put space between people on the outside, the crowds, so they don't get subjected to another closed-in terrorist attack. of course, that negates opportunity to bring more people in. i think probably very close to cut-off time and then from then, get people on and get out of there. >> john: quick last question, if i could. based on what you know of the theater, where do you expect afghanistan will be six months from now? what kind of threat will it pose to the u.s.? >> if we look at what transpiring in history, i'd expect it is going to be continued weak government and
ideal conditions for terrorists and these guys allow other terrorist groups, which they have been doing to operate, i wouldn't be surprised if we have to go in to try to conduct raids or neutralize some threats, if we can get it identified. that will be more difficult now, we have a lot fewer eyes and ears on the ground. >> sandra: we played that for viewers, thank you for your time. thank yo >> adam buller is negotiating, adam, good to get you in here. the president is defending dealing with the taliban, they don't trust the taliban, have to work with them. is the president right to put any face in the taliban from what you know about them, you negotiated with them in doja. >> i was with them twice in doja, we had strength behind us.
taliban is regional militia, they are disciplined and you can make a deal. we did, they stopped attacking american citizens the day after. that is because we had strength on the ground, this region responds to strength. the difficult situation is, i don't think president biden has a choice but to trust them. we have no avenue or alternate. is that good situation to be in? no, we are leaving with our -- >> sandra: briefing now, just stand by with us to the state department. >> before we move to today, let me just say a few more words about yesterday. this is sentiment you heard from the secretary, but i think it is one that bears repeating. most u.s. embassies around the world, the first american you see upon entry and the last upon exit is a u.s. marine.
wherever the secretary travels, there is one group, he always meets with, that is marine security guards. they are constant and they are partners around the world. it is not overstatement to say that we could not conduct our work globally, were it not for our marine counterparts and u.s. military more broadly. yesterday's news was wrenching, wrenching for every single american, but it was especially and ark cutely felt by many people here. the deaths of service members as well as tragic loss of life on the part of so many afghans seeking nothing more than security and opportunity is something on the hearts and minds of everyone here. it was a dark day.
but our service members, alongside diplomatic personnel, of course had been back at it again today. they are guarding the facility in kabul. they are facilitating the most nobel of missions. that is the effort to bring to safety american citizens, as well as afghan and international partners. as you heard from the president, that mission will not be deterred precisely because of the bravery, the skill, the determination of all those on the ground and of course in no small part due to our u.s. military partners. i will turn to today and to our ongoing evacuation efforts. you heard from 3 a.m. eastern on august 26th until 3 a.m. eastern on august 27th, a total of approximately 12, $500 people were evacuated in kabul. this is the result of 35 u.s. military flights, which carried
approximately 8500 evacuatees and 4000 people. since august 14th, the u.s. evacuated and facilitated evacuation of approximately 105,000 people since the end of july, we have relocated approximately 110,600 people. of those evacuated since august 14th, we have brought to safety at least 5100 u.s. citizens and likely more. within the last day, more than 300 additional americans were evacuated. there are approximately 500 american citizens we are currently working with, who want to leave and with whom we are communicating directly to facilitate their evacuations.
thanks to an ongoing aggressive outreach campaign that consists of multiple outbound messages per day by phone, by text message, by e-mail and other tools, we are communicating with several hundred american citizens who have not yet determined whether they want to leave for various reasons. last night alone, we reached out to every american who we believe may be in afghanistan and attempting to leave. in many cases, we did this again, multiple times by phone, by e-mail, by text. we continue to reach out to anyone who makes contact with us through multiple means, which over the past week has included tens of thousands of calls, e-mails, texts and finally before i take your questions, let me give you a question on the evacuation of the locally-employed staff.
we have a responsibility to these individuals that worked with our colleagues on the ground in kabul and we are grateful for their commitment and dedication to the united states. i can confirm that the vast majority of our locally-employed staff and their immediate family members have been evacuated or are currently on the ground of the hamed karzai airport. we're working to evacuate remaining staff and we've been in direct contact with them. these employees have served the united states. they have not only worked for us but worked with us. they are our colleagues. as you heard us say before, our embassies around the world quite simply could not function without locally-employed staff. we will continue to do everything we can to bring them to safety. >> so before you came out here, your colleague