Why It Took So Long To Leave Afghanistan:'s Scott Horton

The foreign policy author and podcast host discusses Joe Biden's withdrawal and how to fix U.S. foreign policy.


"After 20 years, I've learned the hard way that there was never a good time to withdraw U.S. forces," said President Joe Biden in defending his decision to take U.S. personnel out of Afghanistan. "How many more generations of America's daughters and sons would you have me send to fight…Afghanistan's civil war when Afghan troops will not?"

Biden's decision to pull the United States military out of Afghanistan after two decades has been roundly condemned by interventionists, who say that the retreat was "humiliating" and disastrously planned, leaving thousands of Afghans prey to vengeance and violence at the hands of the Taliban.

For Scott Horton and other critics of U.S. foreign policy, the biggest question about the withdrawal is what took so long. Horton heads up the Libertarian Institute, is editorial director at, and hosts The Scott Horton Show podcast. He's also the author of Enough Already: Time To End the War on Terror.

Reason's Nick Gillespie talked with the Austin, Texas-based Horton about why he believes American intervention in Afghanistan was doomed from the start, U.S. foreign policy has been a disaster for all of the 21st century, and a libertarian approach to both domestic and foreign affairs would make people better off all over the globe.

Photo Credits: Scott Horton; Mohammad Rahmani on Unsplash;; Joshua Sukoff on Unsplash; Pool ABACA, Newscom; Saifuraham Safi Xinhua News Agency, Newscom;; Voice of America News, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons; Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons.jpg; Tayfun Salci ZUMAPRESS Newscom; SSG LEOPOLD MEDINA JR, USA, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons; AP POOL ABACA picture alliance Consolidated News Photos, Newscom

Music Credit: When The Sunrise, Instrumental Version, by Sivan Talmor from Artlist

Written by Nick Gillespie; produced by Regan Taylor; audio post-production by Ian Keyser