Sen. Joni Ernst, a Republican from Iowa, remarked Saturday that "many of our traditional allies and partners" pulled her aside and asked about the chaotic scenes at the Halifax International Security Forum last month.
"They are not turning to us and seeing leadership at this moment in time," she declared. "We can’t just continue to promise to be the partner of choice."
The point she made was echoed by former George W. Bush advisor Karl Rove, who opposed the withdrawal and suggested that leaders needed to explain the invasion to Americans better.
"What would have happened if we had had a description over the last several years of what actually our mission was – that we'd ended the combat mission, that we were providing intelligence and air support and training?" Rove questioned, as per Fox News.
Ernst and Rove spoke in Simi Valley, California at the annual Reagan National Defense Forum, a conference that binds together government officials and defense industry executives to "review and assess policies that strengthen America's national defense in the context of the global threat environment."
Sen. Ernst, 51, stressed U.S. credibility was "jeopardized in the last year with the hasty and haphazard withdrawal of Afghanistan."
"We have to take action in this area and show the rest of the world that we are the partner of choice," Ernst pressed.
The War in Afghanistan is the longest war in U.S. history. It was started by the Bush Administration in 2001 after the U.S. accused the Taliban-ruled country of being a safe haven for al-Qaeda, which perpetrated the September 11 attacks.
The ill-advised withdrawal was completed on August 30, with the US evacuating an estimated 130,000 people out of the country as it fell back under Taliban control.
Thirteen U.S. troops were killed at the Hamid Karzai International Airport as the U.S. evacuated interpreters and other vulnerable populations, including women and children.
"Apparently, Mr. Biden didn't require detailed planning for this major policy initiative. He announced his goal - the U.S. out of Afghanistan on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, later changed to August 31 - but the execution was supported only by wishful thinking," Rove wrote in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal.