Alan Webber’s rant on the Afghan withdrawal is wrong on many levels. Besides paying lip service to the 13 service men and women killed by an ISIS K suicide bomber while calling their mission “absurd” and “in vain,” he passes over the immediate cause of their death by claiming not to know what ISIS is, and uses as his authority a group of long-retired, all-white male military officers who support all things Trump including his still uncorroborated Big Lie.

Yes, President Biden called in additional U.S. military forces to conduct the evacuation when the Afghan government and military in Kabul folded under Taliban rapid advance. What competent president would have not done so under similar circumstances? Does Webber prefer President Trump’s method of saying, “I don’t take responsibility at all” as he did with responding to the pandemic?

It was a dangerous and extremely difficult mission which the military conducted admirably, successfully airlifting over 122,000 people including about 6,000 Americans. Only a little over 100 Americans who said they wanted to leave were not able to get to the airport by the final flight.

This was by far the largest rescue airlift in history. All those involved deserve our highest gratitude. Although not perfect, this feat was not absurd and actually quite productive. For those rescued, it was by no means in vain.

Stephen Harman