President Joe Biden and many of his top officials would like everyone to believe that any American or Afghan ally stuck in Afghanistan has what amounts to a free pass to breeze through Taliban checkpoints on their way to the airport in Kabul for evacuation. However, that’s far from the truth on the ground.
As the Washington Examiner reported, many Afghan allies at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul who were told to make their way to the airport have already reported being harassed and assaulted by members of the Taliban as they attempted to pass through the terrorist group’s various checkpoints, saying they’re worried they might not be evacuated.
A dire situation
NBC News obtained a cable sent from the U.S. Embassy in Kabul which clearly indicated that Afghan staffers left behind are scared to death to make their way to the airport, as a number of them have already had a “brutal experience” in attempting to do so.
The situation is apparently so dire that thoughts of dying at the embassy compound are more appealing than being captured by the Taliban or being separated from their loved ones.
“Happy to die here, but with dignity and pride,” one unnamed Afghan official reportedly said.
The feelings of those Afghan allies who have essentially been left behind at the embassy comes at the same time that the U.S. State Department has stated that it has a “special commitment” to helping those particular Afghans, who’ve worked with the U.S. for some 20 years, escape from the Taliban-controlled country.
So far, some 25,000 people in total have been evacuated from the country since Aug. 14, though an undetermined number of Afghan allies and U.S. citizens essentially remain trapped behind enemy lines.
A new threat
On Monday, it was revealed by Taliban leaders that the terrorist group is hard set on an Aug. 31 deadline for the U.S. and other nations to get everyone out of the country, threatening retaliation if the deadline is extended, which was hinted over the weekend by President Joe Biden as a possibility.
“So if they extended, that means they are extending occupation,” Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen in a Sky News interview, according to USA Today. “While there is no need for that, I think it will deteriorate the relation, it will create mistrust between us. If they are intent on continuing the occupation, so it will provoke a reaction.”
The Taliban deadline has raised questions from all corners of the mainstream media and from Congress concerning the slim chance that the remaining Americans and Afghan allies can realistically be evacuated within the next seven days, not to mention the fact that some 6,000 U.S. troops will also need to evacuate.
It was also noted by USA Today that a firefight broke out at Hamid Karzai International Airport overnight, resulting in the loss of at least one Afghan soldier. The Pentagon stressed that no U.S. personnel were injured in the exchange of gunfire, and failed to identify the attackers involved.
Only time will tell how Biden’s foreign policy blunder ends, but given the circumstances on the ground right now, coupled with the Taliban’s deadline, it’s not a stretch to presume that it will likely become much worse before it gets better.