On MSNBC's Deadline, Army veteran Matt Zeller criticized President Biden's speech on the United States withdrawal from Afghanistan:
BRIAN WILLIAMS: I'm curious to hear your reaction of the consequential speech by the American president. He didn't run from it, he owned it, he owned the fact that, as he put it, the buck stops with him.
MATT ZELLER: I hope he gets to own their deaths, too. I feel like I watched a different speech than the rest of you guys. I was appalled. There was such a profound bold-faced lie in that speech, the idea we planned for every contingency? I have been personally trying to tell this administration since it took office, I have been trying to tell our government for years this was coming. We sent them plan after plan on how to evacuate these people, nobody listened to us. They didn't plan for the evacuation of our Afghan war-time allies. They're trying to conduct it now at the 11th hour, the thing they were most concerned about was with the optics of the chaotic evacuation. They got exactly what they were most concerned of by failing to do what was right when they could have done it. We had all of the people and equipment in place to be able to save these people months ago and we did nothing.
I'm appalled that he thinks we only need to take 26,000 people. There's 86,000 people currently left behind in Afghanistan alone. We identified all of them for the government, I have no idea why he claims people don't want to leave Afghanistan,. I have a list of 14,000 names right now of people who want to get out of Afghanistan, and the idea that the Afghan military should be blamed for this? Do you know how many casualties the afghan military took in an average year? More than the United States did in 20. When you are not getting paid on a regular basis, when you are not getting fuel, when no one is supplying you with ammunition and yet you're still showing up to the fight, how dare us for having to blame these people for not having the audacity to be able to survive a Taliban onslaught? No, no, no. What we need to be doing right now and I'm appalled the president didn't say is we need to be talking about how we're going to get every single one of these people out.