(The Post Millennial) – President Joe Biden’s interview with ABC News’ “Good Morning America” appears to have been edited short, with nearly 1,000 words sliced from the airing of the Thursday morning interview.
According to transcripts analyzed by the Daily Wire against the aired interview, some of the cut footage appear to be inconsequential, like hellos and welcomes, while other cut clips appear to show instances of Biden struggling with his wording.
The interview centered around the chaotic events currently unfolding in Afghanistan, marking a rare case this week of Biden taking questioning or an interview regarding the matter.
In one moment, host George Stephanopoulos asked Biden about his comments from July saying that a takeover by the Taliban was unlikely, and whether the intelligence was wrong or if he downplayed the risk.
“There was no consensus. If you go back and look at the intelligence reports, they said that it’s more likely to be sometime by the end of the year,” said Biden in the aired portion of his answer.
“The idea that the tal — and then it goes further on, even as late as August. I think you’re gonna see — the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and others speaking about this later today,” Biden continued in the transcript.
In another cut segment, Stephanopoulos told Biden: “But you know that Senator McConnell, others say this was not only predictable, it was predicted, including by him, based on intelligence briefings he was getting.”
“What — what did he say was predicted?” Biden responded, with Stephanopoulos going on to clarify that McConnell said it was predictable that the Taliban would takeover.
In another moment, Stephanopoulos asked Biden about a statement from a special forces officer, who said in regards to the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, “I just wish we could’ve left with honor.”
“I– I think a lot of– a lot of Americans, and a l– even a lot of veterans who served in Afghanistan agree with you on the big, strategic picture. They believe we had to get out. But I wonder how you respond to an Army Special Forces officer, Javier McKay (PH). He did seven tours. He was shot twice. He agrees with you. He says, ‘We have to cut our losses in Afghanistan.’ But he adds, ‘I just wish we could’ve left with honor,'” said Stephanopoulos.
“Look, that’s like askin’ my deceased son Beau, who spent six months in Kosovo and a year in Iraq as a Navy captain and then major– I mean, as an Army major. And, you know, I’m sure h– he had regrets comin’ out of Afganista– I mean, out of Iraq,” said Biden.
“He had regrets to what’s– how– how it’s going. But the idea– what’s the alternative? The alternative is why are we staying in Afghanistan? Why are we there? Don’t you think that the one– you know who’s most disappointed in us getting out? Russia and China. They’d love us to continue to have to–,” Biden continued.
Stephanopoulos went on to question whether Biden thought the withdrawal could have been handled better, to which Biden said no, adding that there was no way to get out without “chaos ensuing.”
“So for you, that was always priced into the decision?” Stephanopoulos asked in an area question.
“Yes. Now, exactly what happened– is not priced in. But I knew that they’re gonna have an enormous, enorm– look, one of the things we didn’t know is what the Taliban would do in terms of trying to keep people from getting out, what they would do,” Biden responded in the aired portion of his response.
“What are they doing now? They’re cooperating, letting American citizens get out, American personnel get out, embassies get out, et cetera. But they’re having– we’re having some more difficulty in having those who helped us when we were in there–,” Biden continued in the transcript.
Stephanopoulos continued in the transcript by stating “And we don’t really know what’s happening outside of Kabul,” to which Biden had responded “pardon me?”
Stephanopoulos restated his comment, and Biden responded: “Well– we do know generically and in some specificity what’s happening outside of Kabul. We don’t know it in great detail. But we do know. And guess what? The Taliban knows if they take on American citizens or American military, we will strike them back like hell won’t have it.”
In another cut segment, Stephanopoulos pressed Biden about China’s response to the chaos in Afghanistan, and the pressure the country is putting on Taiwan.
“You talked about our adversaries, China and Russia. You already see China telling Taiwan, ‘See? You can’t count on the Americans,'” said Stephanopoulos.
“Sh– why wouldn’t China say that? Biden asked. “Look, George, the idea that w– there’s a fundamental difference between– between Taiwan, South Korea, NATO. We are in a situation where they are in– entities we’ve made agreements with based on not a civil war they’re having on that island or in South Korea, but on an agreement where they have a unity government that, in fact, is trying to keep bad guys from doin’ bad things to them.”
“We have made– kept every commitment. We made a sacred commitment to Article Five that if in fact anyone were to invade or take action against our NATO allies, we would respond. Same with Japan, same with South Korea, same with– Taiwan. It’s not even comparable to talk about that,” Biden continued.
“Yeah, but those–” started Stephanopoulos, with Biden interjecting, “It’s not comparable to t–”
“–who say, ‘Look, America cannot be trusted now, America does not keep its promises–'” Stephanopoulos continued.
“Who– who’s gonna say that? Look, before I made this decision, I met with all our allies, our NATO allies in Europe,” said Biden. “They agreed. We should be getting out.”
“Did they have a choice?” Stephanopoulos asked, in regards to NATO allies.
“Sure, they had a choice,” said Biden. “Look, the one thing I promise you in private, NATO allies are not quiet. You remember from your old days. They’re not gonna be quiet. And so– and by the way, you know, what we’re gonna be doing is we’re gonna be putting together a group of the G-7, the folks that we work with the most– to– I was on the phone with– with Angela Merkel today. I was on the phone with the British prime minister. I’m gonna be talking to Macron in France to make sure we have a coherent view of how we’re gonna deal from this point on.”
In a final cut comment from the President, Biden responds to pressing from Stephanopoulos who said the Biden appears to think “we should’ve gotten out a long time ago” in regards to US deployment in Afghanistan.
“I ask you, you want me to stay, you want us to stay and send your kids back to Afghanistan? How about it? Are you g– if you had a son or daughter, would you send them in Afghanistan now? Or later?” said Biden.
In response to the withholding of the full video interview with the president, Representative Jim Banks of Indiana urged ABC News to release the interview in its entirety during an interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt on Thursday. Banks was one on those GOP members that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi refused to have on the January 6 select committee.
.@RepJimBanks calls on @ABC News to release its full, unedited interview with President Biden on his disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal. “Obviously the interview did not go well for the president … the American people deserve to see all of it” pic.twitter.com/KfLTJVa2y9
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) August 20, 2021
“I want to see the entire unedited interview,” Hewitt said. “I think that offer of a transcript ought to be rejected as quickly as President Nixon’s offer of transcripts of the Watergate tapes to be given to Senator Stennis was rejected 50 years ago. Should that entire unedited interview be released?”
“Well, without a doubt,” responded Banks. “I mean, if ABC was going to agree to an exclusive interview with the President, who refuses to answer questions in any public setting, then ABC owes it to the American people to release the entire video. Obviously, this interview did not go well for the President. The small snippet of it that we’ve seen, Hugh, but like you, I want to see all of it.”
“The American people deserve to see all of it,” Banks continued. “The American people deserve to know why is this president hiding. What is going on? What is preventing this president from appearing before the American people and assuring us that there is a plan and answering any question, the tough questions, the easy questions, answer any questions about what it’s going to take to solve this catastrophe and lead this country forward.”
“And right now, the President is living up to the worst perceptions about him, and those perceptions are that he is incapable of leading, and the fact that he did a video with George, and whatever that agreement was to appear with George and do this interview, we don’t know what that agreement was. I’m sure it was, they gave the White House some control over what was released,” said Banks. “But ABC owes it to the American people to release all of it.”
Hewitt goes on to ask Banks whether he has “personal concerns” about Biden’s “capacity to make decisions at this moment?”
“You know, I’ve never been one to talk about that, Hugh,” responded Banks. “I mean, I’ve dismissed that, and I don’t want to talk about any commander-in-chief like that, but at this point, it’s clear this president is, that there’s something larger going on here that prevents this president from leading our country. I mean, it’s just, it’s very clear that, it’s clear to the American people that until he can assure us otherwise, the American people are going to continue to have growing doubts about his ability to lead our country.”