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Pompeo weighs in on Afghanistan exit, touches on political future

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo(KWCH 12)
Published: Aug. 16, 2021 at 7:09 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - In a return to Kansas, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo took time to weigh in on the current situation in Afghanistan, discussing his prior efforts to establish a successful exit strategy when he served under the Trump administration and reacting to the images coming from the nation with the Taliban poised to take power.

At the Kansas Independent Oil and Gas Association’s annual meeting, Pompeo and his wife, Susan, were the main guests. A topic on the minds of may was the reaction from the 70th secretary of state on Afghanistan.

“We were working hard to put an orderly transition in place, to have the Afghans have peace and reconciliation,” Pompeo said. “I met with the Taliban to deliver that. We made clear to the Taliban if they didn’t honor their commitments, we would ring holy heck on them. And they knew that. That deterrence model helped. We went from over 10,000 down to 2,500 (troops). We didn’t have a single American killed for over a year and a half. That was the fact that we had real American leadership. and I regret we’re not in that place today.”

The U.S. Army veteran who created a business before serving as a congressman representing Kansas also shared a message for young leaders.

“If you work hard, tell the truth, and keep your faith, not every day, but a lot of days, good things will happen,” he said.

In discussing his political future, Pompeo indicated his focus is on campaigning for candidates ahead of next year’s midterm elections.

“I’m campaigning for candidates all across America. I’ve done dozens of events. I’m going to go to Oklahoma to help Senator (James) Langford in a couple days. We are out making that sure President Biden’s team doesn’t own both levers in congress in January of 2023,” he said. “That’s the plan. What happens after 2022, we’ll pray. We’ll work and we’ll see what the lord brings to us.”

When asked about a potential presidential run in 2024, Pompeo said, “No idea. We’ll have to see what happens.”

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