Afghan Generals Khoshal Sadat, Sami Sadat & Green Beret Thomas Kasza : The Fall of Afghanistan & Realities of Life Under the Taliban
ABOUT THE EVENT:
For most of the past 20 years, Afghan Lt. General Khoshal Sadat and Lt. General Sami Sadat (same name, but no relation) fought and led thousands of Afghan soldiers in a long, difficult and brutal war against the Taliban. In addition to their years of experience combating the Taliban on the front lines, much of it with the Special Forces of the Afghan National Army, both generals worked extensively with and fought alongside the U.S. military – before the U.S.’s sudden and disastrous departure in the summer of 2022.
While serving as Commander of U.S. led forces in Afghanistan, legendary General Stan McChrystal chose LTG Khoshal Sadat to serve as his Aide-de-Camp. Sadat trained at the UK’s Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst and the U.S. Army Command & Staff College. For his last position before the fall of Afghanistan, President Ghazi appointed Sadat as the nation’s Deputy Interior Minister in 2019 – overseeing over 115,000 police and security forces across the nation. He fired 27 of 34 provincial police chiefs for ineffectiveness, corruption or both. But seeing the continuing problems at the highest levels of the Afghan government and security forces, LTG Khoshal Sadat resigned and left the country a few weeks before the Taliban’s ultimate victory.
With a similar background, LTG Sami Sadat also fought on the front lines, often leading special forces units against the Taliban. After training in Western military academies, he became Afghanistan’s youngest general. Sadat was commanding the fight against the Taliban in Helmand Province until August 15th, 2022. That day he was called to Kabul and appointed Commander of Afghan Special Forces – not knowing President Ghazi would flee the nation that same day and Kabul would soon fall. In light of the atrocities and repression under the Taliban since their return to power, LTG Sami Sadat has publicly stated that he is willing to lead a new war to liberate and democratize Afghanistan.
Both Generals Sadat will discuss: their personal experiences; the devastating impact of the U.S. withdrawal; the key reasons for the sudden collapse of the Afghan government & military; and the realities & outlook for Afghanistan and its people under Taliban rule.
To start the conversation, clips will be shown from National Geographic’s acclaimed documentary ‘Retrograde’ – which is directed by Academy Award nominee Matthew Heineman and follows the last months and weeks of LTG Sami Sadat’s command before the fall of Afghanistan.
ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:
LTG Khoshal Sadat (no relation to Sami) is Sami’s closest ally in charting a new course for Afghanistan. A former Deputy Minister of the Interior and a leader amongst Afghan Law Enforcement, Khosh is a scholar soldier and celebrated figure amongst the youth of Afghanistan. A graduate of the Roval Military Academy at Sandhurst, the US Army’s Ranger School and the US Army Command and Staff College, he has commanded Afghan Special Mission Units from the Platoon to Regimental levels. Khosh’s leaderships positions include the Crisis Response Unit which combatted high profile attacks originating from ISI and the Haggani Network, Deputy Director for Intelligence, and Chief of Afghan Police. In addition to his service in clandestine SMUs alongside US and UK intelligence agencies, Khoshal served as an advisor to both General McChrystal and Petraeus during the peak of the GWOT. Khoshal is forward-thinking innovator having also advised Fortune 500 companies, and still maintains a close relationship with General McChrystal.
LTG Sami Sadat: The final commander of Afghan Special Operations, Sami dispelled the misguided notion that the Afghan military threw down their arms in leading the heroic final stand of the 215th Corps in the Taliban Heartland of Helmand Province. Not content in letting his country be dominated by extremism, Sami is leading an effort to unite the younger generation of Afghan leaders to shape the future of Afghanistan. A Graduate of King’s College, the Joint Services Command and Staff College of the U.K., the NATO Defense College and Polish National Defense University, Sami was on the bleeding edge of counter-terror operations in Afghanistan. Prior to his assignment as Corps Commander, Sami commanded Afghanistan’s Join Special Operations Command, where in 2019, the Taliban saw it’s highest rate of casualties in 20 years of war. Sami held several high-level positions within Afghan Intelligence Services, to include director of its covert action program Sami is arguable most recognizable as the focal point of 2022’s Retrograde; a National Geographic Documentary that chronicles the final months leading to the collapse of Afghanistan.
Thomas Kasza: A Green Beret and combat veteran, Tom is the Executive Director of the 1208 Foundation; an NGO that is provides advocacy and direct, life-saving aid for at-risk Afghan Special Operators. The 1208 Foundation has a special emphasis on the National Mine Reduction Group; Afghan citizens who were recruited to clear IEDs on behalf of US Special Forces. Tom’s efforts have landed himself and 1208 on the front-page of the New York Times and into the depths of congress. In addition to the humanitarian mission and his studies as a graduate student at Georgetown University, Tom has helped to develop the 1208 Foundation into the premiere veteran-run NGO focused on a proactive solution for Afghanistan. Concerning the outlook towards post-2021 Afghanistan, it is NGOs who are the tip of the spear, and alongside LTG Sadat and BG Sadat, Tom has helped to begin the mobilization of America’s veteran-volunteer community.
In Partnership with the Asia Society Texas: