New commanders arriving in country discovered that their predecessors had left things in a total mess, only to report at the end of their tour that impressive progress had been made—with their replacements then finding quite the opposite. And so it went, year after year, as the U. S. military learned to deceive itself. In so doing, of course, it also deceived Congress and a gullible public.

Meanwhile, Congress offered negligible oversight, finding perpetuating the war more convenient than ending it. And members of the press demonstrated little of the outrage regularly heaped upon Trump for his varying offenses.

If those offenses meet the standard of high crimes and misdemeanors, then how are we to classify what has occurred in Afghanistan since U.S. forces first arrived in 2001? And who will demand accountability? After finishing with Trump, Congress has long-overdue work to do.