Army veteran MPs criticise government over Afghanistan

In yesterday’s special Commons debate on Afghanistan, the government’s most piercing criticism came from a collection of army veteran MPs.

Contributions from Johnny Mercer, Tobias Ellwood, Dan Jarvis, and others, roundly lambasted the government for the decision to leave Afghanistan, not being willing to take a different course of action from the Americans, and for leaving behind Afghan colleagues.

The standout speech of the session was made by Tom Tugendhat. A pin drop could be heard in the House as the chair of the foreign affairs committee delivered an emotional and stirring account of why he lamented the decision to leave Afghanistan.

President Joe Biden came under considerable criticism during the debate. When remarking on comments Biden made about Afghan forces “running away”, Tugendhat described the president’s words as “shameful.

Photo copyright: UK Parliament/Roger Harris