A retired Green Beret running for Congress demanded accountability over the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan and called for an “Afghan war commission” to “find out who was lying and when they were lying.”
Joe Kent, a retired U.S. Army Special Forces chief warrant officer, served for over 20 years and completed 11 combat deployments. He’s running as a Republican for a seat representing Washington state’s 3rd Congressional District.
Kent, in an interview with Fox News, demanded accountability for the chaos in Afghanistan.
“It starts with Biden, and we have to work our way down,” Kent told Fox News. “I think we need to have a full Afghan war commission and find out who was lying and when they were lying.”
“If we don’t fight for it, they will get away with this one, and that will lead to more and more of these,” he continued. “And I don’t just mean the military industrial complex, the intelligence community. I mean every level of our government.”
Kent also expressed disdain for senior leadership across government institutions and questioned the motivations behind their decision-making.
“We have to come to the realization that the vast majority of our elites and of our institutions really are not working in our best interest whatsoever,” he told Fox News. “Some of them outright despise us.”
The former combat veteran who fought in the Iraq War specifically targeted leadership within the U.S. military.
“These commanders, these generals, have been lying for years because they want to keep these wars going,” Kent said. “Wars are good for generals. This is how they make their rank.”
“This is how they slide into their next gig within the D.C. beltway, in academia, in think tanks or even on the board of a defense contractor, just like Gen. [Lloyd] Austin,” he said, referring to the secretary of defense.
Austin previously served as a four-star general in the Obama administration. After retiring as commander of the U.S. Central Command, or CENTCOM, Austin joined the board of Raytheon Technologies, a military contractor.
Kent’s wife, Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Shannon Kent, was killed on Jan. 16, 2019, while conducting special operations against ISIS in Syria. The former Green Beret-turned political candidate blamed her death, in part, on the military industrial complex and on war perpetuated by the desire for personal gain.
“President Trump attempted to get us out of pretty much every conflict,” Kent told Fox News. “The apparatus of the Pentagon, the military industrial complex, the blob, whatever you want to call it, found ways to thwart President Trump.”
“That’s how my wife got killed,” Kent, a father of two, continued.
He also said the U.S.’s chaotic exit from Afghanistan showed that military leadership never intended to fully withdraw from the country even after Trump signed a deal to have U.S. troops out by May 2021.
“The military never planned on living up to the deal that Trump negotiated with the Taliban,” Kent told Fox News. “You can tell they didn’t have a plan to ever leave Afghanistan … There would have been things in place already to get us safely out of there.”
“The military knows how to do this,” he continued. “This isn’t incompetence, this is malice.”
“This culture that the military has of, ‘no matter what, we’re going to stay in these conflicts till we can slow roll presidents and essentially go against the will of the American people,’ that’s absolutely toxic,” he continued.
“And then the Biden administration just wanting a political win and just wanting these optics … that just made this lethal comb….