Tucker: American leaders ‘need to acknowledge’ missteps in Afghanistan

This is a rush transcript from “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” August 30, 2021. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated. TUCKER CARLSON, FOX NEWS CHANNEL HOST: Good evening and welcome to TUCKER CARLSON TONIGHT. America’s longest war ended today after nearly 20 years, the final […]

This is a rush transcript from “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” August 30, 2021. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

TUCKER CARLSON, FOX NEWS CHANNEL HOST: Good evening and welcome to TUCKER CARLSON TONIGHT.

America’s longest war ended today after nearly 20 years, the final U.S. military aircraft lifted off from Afghanistan. General Kenneth McKenzie of the United States Marine Corps oversaw this war. Here was his announcement.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEN. KENNETH MCKENZIE, JR., COMMANDER, CENTCOM: I am here to announce the completion of our withdrawal from Afghanistan and the end of the military mission to evacuate American citizens, third country nationals, and vulnerable Afghans.

The last C-17 lifted off from Hamad Karzai International Airport on August 30th this afternoon at 3:29 p.m. East Coast Time and the last manned aircraft is now clearing the airspace above Afghanistan.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, we got everyone out and we’re done. It’s a poignant moment, more than 4,000 Americans overall died in Afghanistan in over two decades, including last week several enlisted Marines who were just infants when American troops first arrived in that country.

So, finally, after decades, it is done. But is it done?

Just moments after the clip you just saw, after announcing that we had left Afghanistan for good, General McKenzie conceded that actually, not all of us did leave. In fact, there are still Americans trapped in Afghanistan. The United States military left them behind. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCKENZIE: No American citizens came out on the last, what we call the joint tactical exfiltration, the last five jets to leave. We’ve maintained the ability to bring them in up until immediately before departure, but we were not able to bring any Americans out. That activity ended probably about 12 hours before our exit, although, we continued the outreach and would have been prepared to bring them on until the very last minute, but none of them made it to the airport and were able to be — and were able to be accommodated.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: “None of them made it to the airport.” So, that answers a lot of questions. In the past week, you may have wondered about this large but unknown number of American citizens you keep reading about, who, for whatever reason are still stuck in Afghanistan, and you may have asked yourself, who are these people? And why are they still there? Maybe they don’t want to leave, that may be the conclusion you’ve come to. Maybe we don’t owe them anything.

It would be nice to believe that — very nice — but now we can’t believe it because we just learned from the commander of American troops in the region that at least some of these people who are our countrymen, our fellow Americans, really are trapped in a nation controlled by the Taliban.

These Americans tried to flee, but it was too chaotic and too dangerous. As General McKenzie just put it, they couldn’t get to the airport in time, so the U.S. military just left. Tough.

Call us if you make it to Tampa.

It is hard to believe that General McKenzie just admitted this in public. The reporters in the Briefing Room seemed to think it was just perfectly normal another Pentagon briefing, but there’s nothing normal about this, not in this country. It is appalling on every level. It is the definition of dishonorable.

What’s the point of having a military that doesn’t bother to rescue its own citizens? It’s a serious question. Why do we have an army? All those guns and helicopters and missile systems. Isn’t the whole point of all of it, its whole purpose is to protect Americans?

Apparently, there’s another purpose, at least in the view of the man who oversees the military’s Central Command. Those trapped Americans are no longer our problem, General McKenzie explained. We’re going to let the State Department deal with them.

And with that, tanned and relaxed from his extended vacation in the Hamptons, garage band enthusiast and part-time Secretary of State Tony Blinken took the podium.

Yes, Blinken confirmed, there are more than a hundred Americans who have been abandoned in Afghanistan and who are understandably desperate to get out. No, we have no actual way to guarantee their safe passage. The military is gone.

But no problem, the medieval theocracy that now runs Afghanistan has everything under control. The Taliban have given us their word that American citizens will be fine. And with that, Tony Blinken left the stage. He took no questions nor by the way did Joe Biden appear then or at any other time today to explain what exactly is happening to these Americans or in Afghanistan.

The President of the United States appears to be missing again.

If you take three steps back, you can see very clearly that we are watching some kind of pivot point in our history. The most obvious casualty apart from the 13 dead servicemen last week is American power and prestige, both of which in the span of just days have been profoundly and permanently diminished.

There will be huge consequences of this moment. You’ll see them both in the near term, you’ll see them through the generations going forward. But for now, it’s worth answering a simple question. Who is taking responsibility for this? Who is paying for the disaster we’re watching?

Not so long ago that would have been an easy question to answer, our leaders would be paying the price. Until fairly recently, the people in charge understood that leadership comes with obligations. It is not all privileges.

If you’re going to make big decisions, you have to be willing to suffer if they go wrong.

In the spring of 1912, Edward Smith ran his ship into an iceberg in the North Atlantic. As it went down, Smith did not blame climate change for the disaster. Instead, he stood stoically in the wheelhouse and rode the Titanic to the bottom of the ocean and people applauded.

It didn’t seem strange, it was expected. He was in charge. He stayed until the end.

So who is in charge of this? And more to the point, who is paying for it?

Well, over time, an entire class of foreign policy experts and political leaders are responsible. They watched for 20 years as Afghanistan turned into a pointless mess in which Americans died and were damaged beyond repair.

And as this happened, they said nothing. In fact, they lied about it, repeatedly. Who are these people? The name Liz Cheney comes to mind, but there are many, many like her.

And then, there are the people responsible for what has happened in the last couple of weeks. A pull out that could not have been more ineptly managed if you’d intended to screw it up. That would be Joe Biden and as many incompetent lieutenants, some of whom seem deranged.

So what is their punishment? How many of them have been fired? How many have resigned? How many have even apologized? That’s the best place to start always.

To our knowledge, none. Not one. In fact, so far as we can tell, the only military leader to suffer so far for this disaster is a Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel called Stu Scheller. Now Scheller didn’t decide to abandon Bagram Air Base, the blood of those 13 servicemen last week are not in his hands.

Scheller’s crime was posting this video on social media.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STUART SCHELLER, RELIEVED OF DUTY: If an 0-5 Battalion Commander has the simplest live fire incident EO complaint, boom, fired. But we have a Secretary of Defense that testified to Congress in May that the Afghan National Security Force could withstand the Taliban advance. We have Chairman of Joint Chiefs who had come out, is a member of that, who is supposed to advise on military policy, we have a Marine Combatant Commander — all of these people are supposed to advice.

And I’m not saying we’ve got to be in Afghanistan forever, but I am saying, did any of you throw your rank on the table and say hey, it’s a bad idea to evacuate Bagram Air Field, the strategic air base before we evacuate everyone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, this is a disaster, that is obvious, the disaster is the result of a series of bad decisions made by people whose names we know. Have any of those people been punished, explain themselves, or apologize? That’s the question that Stu Scheller asked, and for asking it, The Pentagon relieved him of his command.

On Sunday, Stu Scheller announced that he was resigning from the Marine Corps. He has got three years until retirement and the pension that comes with it, but he is leaving. Here is why.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCHELLER: All I asked for was accountability of my senior leaders when there are clear obvious mistakes that were made. I’m not saying we can take back what has been done. All I asked for was accountability.

For people to comment on what I said and to say yes, mistakes were made.

I think them accepting accountability would do more for service members and PTSD and struggling with purpose than any other transparent piece of paper or message and I haven’t received that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: Yes, I mean thousands of Americans died in Afghanistan, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands were permanently damaged by the time they spent their over 20 years, and the exit diminishes our country permanently. Who did that and why haven’t they apologized? It’s a really simple question, and for asking it, Scheller was relieved of command.

Instead of taking any form of responsibility for this disaster that they caused, the Biden administration bewilderingly is doing the opposite. They are bragging in public with a straight face about what a great job they’ve done.

Joe Biden’s flak already announced that the White House does not plan to punish anyone — that means The Pentagon or the Intel Agencies for what we’re watching now. No one.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

QUESTION: Does he believe he was given bad advice and will he ask for any resignations of his generals given the high cost of American and Afghan lives?

JEN PSAKI, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: No to both of those questions.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, the Biden administration’s position has not changed in the face of all the evidence we’re watching on television. They are telling you they did as well as they possibly could have done.

Joe Biden first said that on August 19th, that was prior to the bombing in Kabul. But as recently as today, The Pentagon’s top spokesman said it again. Watch the oily John Kirby explain that there was no possible way to predict that, for example, Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani, would suddenly abandon the country to the Taliban.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REAR ADMIRAL JOHN KIRBY (RET.) PENTAGON PRESS SECRETARY: Our expectation was that the Ghani government would stay in place. Nobody could have imagined how quickly that government would have literally just dissipated, almost overnight. There was simply no way to predict that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, we could spend the rest of the show, the rest of the week, the rest of the year until New Year’s Day forensically going through each lie that they’re telling you and batting it down because these are the flimsiest possible lies. We are not going to do that. It would give everyone a headache.

But let’s just — let’s just — let’s take a close look at this one, quote: “There was simply no way to predict that the President of Afghanistan was going to fold and run away.” So, if you want a sense of how ludicrous that statement is, what a lie it is, consider what our government knew about Ashraf Ghani, the President of Afghanistan.

According to “The Washington Post,” The Pentagon didn’t even know that Ghani had fled Afghanistan until they saw it on television. They had no idea, quote: “U.S. officials were as surprised as anyone. The Americans had expected Ghani would stay for an orderly transition to an interim authority, but he did not inform most of the government’s senior ranks including his two Vice Presidents about his departure, nor did Ghani contact the U.S. government, which was left to piece together the absent leader’s movement from rumor and media reports.”

So our Intel Agencies received a combined $85 billion last year alone in Federal tax dollars. For perspective, that’s more money than Russia, Germany, and the U.K. spend on their entire annual military budgets. But for all that money, our generals and our spies were confident that Ashraf Ghani would stick around for a quote, “orderly transition.” They say there was no way to predict otherwise.

Meanwhile, no one, not The Pentagon, not the C.I.A. not the State Department could say where Ashraf Ghani was. They had no idea. So, our authorities have no problem finding say a middle-aged woman who committed the crime of waving a flag at the Capitol Building on January 6th, but they have no idea how to find the President of Afghanistan.

Now, that’s not to say we were completely in the dark. What our leaders did notice is that before Kabul fell, it was evident that Ghani did not care at all about doing his job and was not capable of doing it. This is the guy that we installed effectively, whatever they tell you.

As the Taliban began seizing key territories all over the country, provincial capitals, all through the summer, Ghani was transfixed not by what was happening in Afghanistan, but by a new government salary payment system that was slated to roll out soon.

According to “The Post’s” account, quote: “Even as a cascade of provincial capitals fell, President Ghani appeared distracted.” According to one official who spoke to “The Post,” quote: “Ghani would want to talk about the digitization of the economy. It had nothing to do with the dire threat.” End quote.

Keep in mind, Ghani, no background in any relevant discipline. The guy was a College Professor who worked at Johns Hopkins. We picked some completely incompetent tool from American academia rather than like an actual Afghan who could run the country. Of course, we did, because Tony Blinken liked him, and people like Tony Blinken liked him.

So, the President of Afghanistan’s flaky personal behavior reportedly raised some red flags with U.S. officials that would include Frank McKenzie the head of Central Command. “The Post” reports that McKenzie was quote: “Mystified by Ghani’s behavior.”

The question is, did anyone in The Pentagon do anything about it? Well, of course, they didn’t. Nothing. They just pretended everything was fine because they’re dumb.

As the Taliban swept through Afghanistan, the State Department wasn’t reaching out to Ghani to figure out where he was or what he was doing, instead Tony Blinken and his deputies were working to get other countries to sign a statement to send to the Taliban urging them to let Americans out of the country. Ultimately, that statement was signed by military powerhouses like Haiti, Papua New Guinea, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. That’s what the Secretary of State thinks is significant, getting Papua New Guinea and Congo and Haiti to sign some stupid document that means nothing. These are children.

But no one is apologizing for it. They won’t even acknowledge they screwed up. They are not having a moment of self-reflection about why were they on the phone with the government of Haiti as American citizens were trapped in Afghanistan run by our new friends, the Taliban? They’re never going to explain why they did this, why they put the safety of thousands of American citizens in the hands of a President who didn’t care enough to stick around, and of course that President, Ghani, isn’t apologizing either.

He was trained by the U.S. after all. He was educated at Columbia, and he’s taken millions of dollars we’ve given him and we fled, all while claiming to be a hero who left his country to avoid more bloodshed rather than what he clearly is, which is a coward.

Meanwhile his kids, they are Americans of course, they’ve got U.S. passports. They are living in million-dollar properties in Washington D.C. and Brooklyn and demanding that this country accept as many Afghan refugees as possible. His son by the way worked for Pete Buttigieg on the presidential campaign. That tells you everything.

So, to choose a President of Afghanistan, our brain dead ruling class chose someone just like them. Of course, they did.

Suddenly, a lot of what we’ve seen over the past 20 years in Afghanistan, in particular, over the past four months makes sense. The experts in the State Department and the C.I.A. took trillions of dollars to install people in Afghanistan who are every bit as clueless as they are.

Remember, it was in June that U.S. Intelligence was predicting that the Ghani government would remain intact for six months. As recently as this month, Mark Milley said he had no Intelligence suggesting the Taliban would take over Afghanistan quickly.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEN. MARK MILLEY, CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF: There was nothing that I or anyone else saw that indicated a collapse of this army and this government in 11 days.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, they believed that, they actually believed it, because the incompetence around them kept repeating it like it was true and they bought it. And that’s one of the reasons The Pentagon abandoned Bagram Air Base, which would have been of course a much easier place to secure than an airport, a commercial airport in the capital city.

They didn’t think they’d need Bagram. They had confidence in Ashraf Ghani, the guy who was obsessing over Afghan’s new version of PayPal. That’s also why the Biden administration reportedly turned down the Taliban’s offer to cede all of Kabul to the U.S. military. They thought they’d have far more time than they actually did.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

NED PRICE, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON: On the tactical decision of which is the right airport to have for an evacuation, of course, any responsible President would give significant weight to the advice of the commanders on the ground and their advice was to close Bagram and focus on Kabul.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: Oh, close Bagram focus on Kabul. We did that, and now a lot of people are dead, and a lot are still stuck there. And once again, to beat a dead horse, no one has apologized.

If you caught one of your kids doing something wrong, you wouldn’t rest until that child apologized. Contrition is an essential part of fixing a problem. It’s not just practically important, it is spiritually important.

Admit you were wrong and they won’t, because they don’t care what you think.

And so to this moment, the only person who has been punished for these terrible decisions, one Marine Corps Officer who criticized those decisions.

This can’t go on.

When leaders refuse to hold themselves accountable, over time, people revolt. That happens.

We need to change course immediately and start acknowledging our mistakes. The people who made them need to start acknowledging them or else the consequences will be awful.

Well, thousands of Afghan citizens have now arrived at military bases in the United States. They’re all translators, right? No, actually they’re not. Almost none of them are translators. That’s why they need translators to communicate.

And now, there is evidence that many of these refugees have not even been vetted and they are walking off bases with no supervision at all.

That’ll end well.

We’ve got details straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON: So our geniuses in Washington spent 20 years in Afghanistan with no clearly defined mission, then they decided to pick a college professor to run the country, to run Afghanistan, a college professor, a guy just like them who turns out to be every bit as corrupt as they are in the end.

And then they get in a way that’s almost calculated to humiliate and diminish the United States, the most disastrous exit from anything in 250 years. So, they look around and they say, hmm, how can we make this a little bit worse? I have an idea, let’s import some rapists. That would make it even worse than we’ve already made it — and they have.

“The Washington Times” reported today that a previously deported rapist was among the Afghan refugees that just landed at Dulles Airport. Of course, let’s import rapists, because it’s not bad enough.

Congressman Tom Tiffany recently toured Fort McCoy in Wisconsin where 2,000 Afghan evacuees are being held. He says he did not see a single Special Immigrant Visa holder. He also says that all of the evacuees were free to leave the base whenever they wanted to.

Congressman Tiffany joins us tonight.

Congressman, thanks so much for coming on.

First of all, thank you for seeing this for yourself. Tell us what you saw.

REP. TOM TIFFANY (R-WI): So, we’ve seen the debacle in Afghanistan and it appears the Biden administration is going to double down on it by bringing people who are unvetted into our country.

I was at Fort McCoy in Southwestern Wisconsin last Friday where there were 2, 000 evacuees from Afghanistan and what we found out is none of them were there on a Special Immigration Visa. They were all there on parole.

And for our listeners, the Special Immigration Visa is a thorough vetting process that can take up to two years to find out if a person should be coming to the United States. The Parole Authority is granted to the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security and he could just wave people in.

They have circumvented — the Biden administration has circumvented the SIV process and they’re just bringing people in on parole. Second thing that we saw, Tucker, was that people could leave the base including without the authority of the General that is overseeing Fort McCoy.

CARLSON: So, we’ve got two islands off the coast. I’m not talking about Guantanamo Bay, I’m talking about Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard, and I don’t think any of these refugees have been moved to Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard. They’ve all been moved to places like Wisconsin and Maine and like far away from the centers of power.

Is there anything we can do to change it? If we’re going to import thousands of unvetted Afghan Pashtun tribesmen, why aren’t we moving them to the places where the people who make these decisions live?

TIFFANY: Well, that would really be a good idea, but what I have suggested — and there are Afghans that should be able to come into our country. I’ve talked to servicemen in my district who said there are people that should be able to come from Afghanistan because they they’ve given their — some of them have given their — almost their lives being threatened by the Taliban, and they should be able to come to the United States.

However, these people are not being vetted thoroughly and what should happen is, they should go to a third — a safe third country like Qatar, someplace like that and be vetted there, and then if they get through the vetting, they should be able to come in, because 84 percent of the people in the first quarter of this year that tried to get an SIV in Afghanistan, they were rejected. Only 16 percent were able to get in.

There has to be a thorough vetting process. The Biden administration is circumventing it.

CARLSON: Yes, they’re just using a crisis to change our country. They’ll never lose another election. That’s the point, as you know.

Congressman, thanks so much. I appreciate you coming on tonight.

TIFFANY: Good to be with you, Tucker.

CARLSON: So, an awful lot has been going on recently, so it’s possible that some of you may have missed this from just the other day.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: So let me say this as parents — to the parents — as you have, you have the tools, you have the tools to keep your child safer and two of those tools above all are available to you. One, make sure that everyone around your child who can be vaccinated is vaccinated. Parents, adults, teens.

Two, make sure your child is masked when they leave home. That’s how we can best keep our kids safe.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: Wait a second. Was that Joe Biden lecturing the rest of us on how to raise our children? Yes. And that’s odd. It seems a little like getting real estate advice from a homeless man or babysitting tips from Jeffrey Epstein. It’s a bit much. It’s a tad presumptuous.

As accustomed as we’ve all become to the shameless insanity of 2021, pregnant fighter pilots, birthing men, vaccinated triathletes jogging with their masks on, it is worth pausing for a moment before letting this one pass.

So, here is the response to Joe Biden from a radio show host called Chris Stigall who apparently also has kids, quote: “Make sure your child isn’t chucking illegal guns in dumpsters while impregnating strippers while strung out on heroin with fraudulent identification in a rental car, cashing checks from foreign governments using your name, then talk to me about parenting, geezer.” Which honestly is good advice for raising kids. It’s at least as important as wearing a mask on the playground, we would say.

So you may have noticed anyone who disagrees with the public health experts is getting banished from American society, getting destroyed.

One mother has just learned that she is not allowed to see her own son because she hasn’t accepted the vaccine.

Meanwhile, Alex Berenson who has told the truth from day one has been permanently kicked off social media, but he is not banned here, so he joins us next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON: Man, if Joe Biden can lecture you on how to raise your kids, anything can happen. Maybe he’ll write a parenting book at some point. We’ll review it.

Anything can happen. We know that because it wasn’t very long ago that vaccine mandates were considered far too radical even for the most radical Members of Congress. For example, in April, this April, Nancy Pelosi explained on camera that you can’t force people to take medicine they don’t want. This is America — or it was, now Democrats have concluded they can make you do whatever they want.

In Illinois, one judge recently ruled that a mother is not allowed to see her son until she submits to the vaccine.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REBECCA FIRLIT, MOTHER BANNED TO SEE HER SON UNTIL SHE IS VACCINATED: He is a very sweet boy. He’s my whole world.

QUESTION: Do you miss him?

FIRLIT: I miss him more than anything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice over): Rebecca Firlit has been divorced for seven years and shares custody of her eleven-year-old son with her ex-husband in what had been a 50/50 split in parenting time, but on August 10th, in an unrelated child support hearing, Cook County Judge James Shapiro asked Firlit whether she’d been vaccinated.

When she told the judge no because she’s had bad reactions to vaccines in the past, Judge Shapiro stripped Firlit of all of her parenting time until she agrees to get vaccinated.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: First of all, the correct answer to have you been vaccinated is, it’s none of your business, okay. But if you don’t get vaxxed, then we will take your kids away. Stripped her of all of her parenting time until she agreed to get vaccinated.

Thankfully that decision received media attention, so the power mad lunatic, Judge Shapiro was forced to reverse his ruling.

But, lots of other stuff is going on in Chicago, for example, a security guard at a liquor store shot a man three times because he wasn’t wearing his obedience mask. According to CWB Chicago, during a bond hearing that guard’s attorney said the customer was quote, “putting others’ lives at risk by not covering his face.” So, he got shot three times and he deserved it.

Now, you’d think stories like this might make the people who used to lecture us about civil liberties a little bit concerned, but no they’re not concerned, they’re totally on board.

Prominent Democrats continue to fantasize about committing violence against their political opponents. They are doing it everywhere and in public. Here is the latest. It’s a new tweet from Arne Duncan. He was Barack Obama’s Education Secretary, remember?

Quote: “Have you noticed how strikingly similar both the mindsets and actions between the suicide bombers at Kabul’s airport and the anti-mask and anti-vax people here? They both blow themselves up, inflict harm on those around them, and are convinced they’re fighting for freedom.”

In other words, says Arne Duncan, anyone who disagrees with me is a terrorist. And what do we do to terrorists? We drone them.

So, here’s the bottom line, if people like Arne Duncan continue to talk this way, things are going to get really dark really, really fast. These are disagreements with our fellow Americans, they’re not terrorists, they are people who disagree with us, and if we persist in calling them terrorists, you know, God knows where it’s going.

Alex Berenson has just been banned from Twitter apparently for good. Twitter has also prevented anyone from reading any of his posts. This probably won’t surprise you, Alex Berenson has persisted in telling the truth, reading the data from day one, but here is the good news, Alex Berenson’s work is still available on “Substack: where his readership is increasing exponentially every day, so maybe there are alternatives to the monopolies.

Alex Berenson joins us tonight. Alex, thanks so much for coming on.

So, no one watching is surprised that you’ve been banned. I think everyone is appalled by it, but it’s not shocking because you have been so fearless in telling the truth. Really quickly, tell us what you got banned for? And then tell us what the alternatives to the old system are turning out to be.

ALEX BERENSON, AUTHOR: Sure, well, first of all, I’m not clear what I got banned for. I haven’t received an official notice or e-mail from Twitter about this. I can’t get into my account and they’ve told other people that I’ve been banned.

On Saturday, I tweeted that if you look at the efficacy and duration of the vaccines, it’s probably more accurate to call them therapeutics than vaccines and given their side effect profile, and the fact they have to be dosed in advance. You know, that’s a decision that people are going to want to make on their own and certainly not something that we want to mandate.

I think every statement I made in that tweet was totally accurate and defensible, and I think if it gets to a jury, we’ll find out what a jury has to say about that.

But to be honest, Twitter hasn’t told me I can’t tweet. They can’t — they haven’t told me I can’t tweet under my name, they’ve told me, I can’t tweet under somebody else’s account which we know ghostwriting is a thing on Twitter. So, you know, as far as I’m concerned, I just can’t get into my account right now.

Now, Twitter has 200 million people — 200 million daily active users. It is a tremendously important and valuable platform. For me to be denied access to it when I’m trying to you know get public health information out there I think is dangerous.

I have “Substack” and I’ve been amazed at the response, Tucker. You know, thousands and thousands of people are signing up every day, but Twitter is a much larger platform and you know, I think I have a First Amendment claim, you know in that Twitter sort of the modern Town Square and in California, actually where Twitter is based, there is special protection for this.

The California Supreme Court had a very interesting ruling about 40 years ago on this issue involving malls, so Twitter, you know wants to fight battles in court in California and we’ll see if that works to their advantage or not.

And then I think there’s a separate issue here, which is that Twitter has defamed me. Twitter has said that my information is inaccurate and you know, as a result, everybody from “Vice” to other places you know, they say terrible things about me and they say I’m disgraced or that you know, that I’m putting out false information.

Twitter is not just one voice on its site. Obviously, Twitter is the operator of its own site and it has a special responsibility not to defame users of the site.

So, you know, it’s not just that I have a right to put out information right or wrong, it’s that I think the information is right.

So please, join the movement. Come to “Substack.” Support this fight.

CARLSON: I hope you sue the crap out of these totalitarians, I really do, and if you do, I hope you’ll come back and tell us how we can you know, buy popcorn and watch, I really do.

BERENSON: I have been — it’s more than that, Tucker, people want to be part of this, they want to help fund this lawsuit. It’s been amazing to me.

CARLSON: Yes, I want to fund it, like, you know, I do. I mean that. Alex Berenson, thank you. I appreciate it.

BERENSON: Thanks.

CARLSON: So it turns out American citizens weren’t the only thing the Biden administration left behind in Afghanistan. We just armed the Taliban to such an extent that you won’t even believe it when you hear the details, it’s not like we left a couple of 1911’s behind. They’re now one of the most powerful armies in the world.

We have details next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON: So on its way out of Afghanistan, the Biden administration left behind an awful lot of Americans, but also nearly $90 billion in military equipment. How much is that? Well, only two countries on the planet have a military budget larger, China and the United States. So, the Taliban now have the best equipped military of its size in the history of the world.

What do they have? Well, according to a tally by “The Times of London,” the Taliban just received more than 22,000 Humvees, more than 50,000 trucks, and other armored vehicles, as well as a sizable Air Force. It comes with four C-130 transport planes, dozens of other fixed wing aircraft, and up to 350 combat helicopters. The Taliban now has more Blackhawks than many developed nations, and those are just the vehicles.

Taliban soldiers also got more than 350,000 American rifles, 126,000 handguns and approximately 64,000 heavy machine guns. It’s quite an arsenal. It’s all at your expense.

It’s a disaster, obviously, but it also makes for a striking contrast with what is happening in this country. At the very moment the White House is arming our new friends, the Taliban, they are working hard to disarm you.

Whether or not it makes the news, it is happening. The administration just announced quietly, it is banning some of the most commonly purchased ammunition in the United States. This move will certainly and intentionally lead to severe shortages in this country. That’s why they did it.

Joe Biden himself has said repeatedly, he would like to prevent you from owning the firearms that most Americans use to defend themselves and their families, and those efforts are now accelerating.

So how about this as an answer? No. You’re not allowed to give more than half a million guns to the Taliban, guns that we paid for and then try and take our guns away in this country. Sorry, that’s not how it works. So, shut up and back off.

Not one more word about gun control from these people until they get back every single rifle from Kandahar. That is the rule.

Teddy Daniels is running for the United States Congress from the State of Pennsylvania. Before he became a politician, he served in Afghanistan where he was nearly killed. Teddy Daniels is one of the few people running who seems like an interesting person and totally sincere, so we spent an hour talking to him on a brand new episode of “Tucker Carlson Today.” Here’s part of that conversation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TEDDY DANIELS, CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE FOR THE STATE OF PENNSYLVANIA: It was hell. If you could describe hell to somebody, that’s what it would be like.

You never knew what was going to happen next.

CARLSON: Yes.

DANIELS: Again, you know boredom through sheer terror in a matter of seconds, and you know we did a lot of work with the locals. We — I interacted a lot with the Afghan kids and you know, the villagers and the problem is fighting an insurgency. You can’t always tell the good guys from the bad guys.

CARLSON: Yes.

DANIELS: And I think that was the most stressful part of being over there. You can’t tell who is good and who is bad.

CARLSON: So, you were wounded while there.

DANIELS: Yes, sir. Yes, sir.

CARLSON: And I think we have video.

DANIELS: Yes.

CARLSON: You know, of that. I mean, which is sort of amazing. You had a helmet cam.

DANIELS: Yes, sir.

CARLSON: Okay, so this is you in Afghanistan in a firefight. Here we go.

[VIDEO CLIP PLAYS]

CARLSON: That’s you?

DANIELS: That’s me.

CARLSON: Shocking. That’s shocking video.

DANIELS: April 25th, 2012.

CARLSON: So, tell us the context.

DANIELS: So we got pinned down. I actually came out into the open to draw the fire away from our squad, started getting torn up with shrapnel, bullet fragments, things of that nature.

The rifle at the last part of the video that you showed round actually came in the bottom of my 203 grenade launcher and that’s what knocked the rifle out of my hands.

CARLSON: An AK-47 round.

DANIELS: Yes.

CARLSON: Jeez.

DANIELS: Yes, and the thing is, is I was sliding in behind that rock in the video. I had the rifle up in front of my face as I was sliding down and that’s where the round hit the 203.

You know, Tucker, I — if that rifle was not there at that second, at that moment in front of my face as I’m getting down behind that rock, I would have caught one. I wouldn’t be here tonight. I wouldn’t be here.

CARLSON: What happened to the rifle that saved your life?

DANIELS: Well, we got back to our outpost. They obviously took the grenade launcher off and I still had the rifle for the rest of the time that I was in country, but no grenade launcher.

CARLSON: You didn’t get to frame the grenade launcher.

DANIELS: No, no, no. Some supply guy somewhere probably has that in the collection. I didn’t get to keep that.

CARLSON: Did you think you were done when you got hit?

DANIELS: I’ll tell you what? I actually had — I had a talk with God behind that — behind that rock.

CARLSON: I bet.

DANIELS: And, I had a vision of two soldiers coming to tell my son that, “Your dad was killed behind a rock in Afghanistan.” And I said, okay, God, I get it. This is it. This is the day you bring me home. I don’t want my son knowing that I didn’t go out fighting.

CARLSON: Yes.

DANIELS: So the camera actually went dead and I reloaded, I stood up and started working my way down that hill. I had a round hit the corner of my eye protection, they just shot right off of my face and then I had another round skip off the side of my helmet and I’m returning fire because I’m in the open now, just walking down the hill.

I’m bleeding from my arm, bleeding from my leg.

CARLSON: You’re a big target.

DANIELS: Yes, not a very fast one either, so they — the entire time though, Tucker, you know —

CARLSON: Shot your glasses off.

DANIELS: Oh yes. Oh yes. I accepted death though. I had made my peace with God and honestly, I’ve never felt more at peace in my life than I was walking down that mountain. I never felt more peace.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON: So, Teddy Daniels goes on to explain how he got from there to a congressional race in his home state of Pennsylvania and what he plans to do if he makes it to Congress. It’s great actually.

That full interview is on foxnation.com. We’ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON: As we told you at the opening of the show, the most infuriating part about living in America right now is not just that our leaders make mistakes, that they’re incompetent, they’re bad managers, but that they’re never held accountable for those mistakes. They just go back to the Hamptons with Tony Blinken and laugh about it.

They’re never fired. They never apologize.

Well, in 15 days, the long-suffering residents of the State of California will have a chance to hold someone accountable, their governor, Gavin Newsom, who has so mismanaged the state they can’t keep the lights on, crime is skyrocketing, wildfires are so bad right now at Tahoe, people can’t go outside.

And in 15 days, voters in California will be able to recall him. Is it just voters in California? In California, non-citizens can vote, so people who don’t live in California vote? It seems kind of racist to prevent them from voting, just because you don’t live there.

We can’t answer those questions, we’re not election officials.

What we can say is, in 15 days, democracy has a chance to work. Let’s hope that it does.

We’ll be back tomorrow and every weeknight, 8:00 p.m., the show that is the sworn enemy of lying pomposity, smugness and groupthink.

Sean Hannity takes it away.

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Maude Faigley

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