Fox News’s Peter Doocy was wide open at Tuesday’s press briefing following the announcement that Speaker Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan. Doocy wanted to discuss major inconsistencies in Biden’s handling of Afghanistan.
Doocy put pressure on National Security Council John Kirby over the presence of al-Qaida in Afghanistan following the failed withdrawal.
Doocy argued Kirby’s statement that the administration had knowledge of al-Qaida’s presence in Afghanistan is “not consistent” with President Joe Biden’s previous Aug. 20, 2021, remarks that the terrorist group was out of the country. On that day, Biden said, “What interest do we have in Afghanistan at this point, with Al-Qaida gone?”
Kirby, the then-Pentagon press secretary, said later Aug. 20, 2o21, that there was a small presence of al-Qaida and ISIS in Afghanistan.
“In a major way, al-Qaida was not playing a—no, wait, let me finish,” Kirby responded Tuesday to Doocy. “They weren’t playing a major role in operations or resourcing or planning in Afghanistan. But Peter, I know specifically because I was at a different podium a year ago and we talked about the fact that al-Qaida had a presence in Afghanistan, but small and not incredibly powerful or potent. And, I think, again without getting into numbers, we would still assess that to be the case.”
U.S. intelligence officials located al-Zawahri decades after he had been Usama bin Laden’s deputy during the 9/11 attacks. He was also bin Laden’s successor after the leader was killed by a Navy SEAL team in 2011.
According to reports, the terrorist often went out on the balcony in the early morning and he was always alone, making it an ideal opportunity to eliminate him while minimizing the risk for his family who CIA officials determined also lived in the house.
The U.S. surveillance showed the al-Zawahri never seemed to leave the house where his wife, daughter and grandchildren were also apparently living freely thanks to Biden.