UNBELIEVABLE: US charging Afghan evacuees

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The handling of the airlift to remove Americans, allied nationals and Afghan workers is unimaginably screwed up.  Certainly – as President Biden says — the buck stops on his desk for ordering an ill-conceived, flawed and disastrous — and needlessly deadly – evacuation.  But the situation is worsened by an utterly botched operation on the ground.

According to Biden, the rescue is going as well as possible.  Either he is a heartless liar (consistent with his long reputation for prevarication) or the windmills of his mind are grinding to a halt.

Even as the lucky few are being flown out of Kabul airport, thousands are still hiding in their homes all over the country – afraid to step outside lest they be arrested or killed.  Both distance and the brutal Taliban terrorists present a formidable obstacle to their escape.  For many, the obstacles will be insurmountable – and many will die.

Biden says that situation would have been the same if he had begun the exodus earlier.  Really?  Would it not be a lot more effective if the Taliban were not around to prevent movement to the airport?  If Biden had not surrendered our Bagram military airfield to the Taliban at the onset, there would have been a second hub of departure – as well as some of the other regional airports that were still in the control of the Afghan government.

The direness of the situation is underscored by our State Department’s communique that the United States could not assure the safety of anyone who was not on the grounds of the Kabul airport.  This was reaffirmed by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Mark Milley.  In answer to a press question, he stated unequivocally that the American military could not rescue anyone outside the airport.  Cannot?  Or just will not?  I guess, if our military is not strong enough to win a regional war over folds fighting from the backs of pick-up trucks, then perhaps Milley is correct.

At least there is good news for the folks who made it to the Kabul airport – as long as they can pay their airfare for the trip out of danger.  PAY THEIR AIRFARE?  According to a report in the Daily Beast, those boarding the planes will be required to reimburse Uncle Sam for $2000 (American citizen rate) or more (non-American rates).  We can only assume that the fee will not apply to those hanging on the outside of the planes.

When asked to deny the rumors, the State Department pointed to the law “that requires that evacuation assistance to private U.S. citizens or third country nationals be provided on a reimbursable basis to the maximum extent practicable.’”

To make things perfectly clear, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said that there was “no intention of seeking any reimbursement from those fleeing Afghanistan.”

If that was the case, then why did the U.S. Embassy issue a Security Alert telling those stranded outside the Kabul airport that they would get no help from Uncle Sam in getting to the airport AND that “Repatriation flights are not free, and passengers will be required to sign a promissory loan agreement and may not be eligible to renew their U.S. passports until the loan is repaid. The cost may be $2,000 USD or more per person.”?

But there was a modicum of good news. Those who cannot afford the $2000 get a loan.  Interest free?  But if the loan from the government is not repaid, the deadbeat’s passport will not be renewed.  And this while Uncle Sam is considering the cancellation of billions of dollars in student loans.

There is NOTHING positive about Biden’s obstinate decision to take troops out of Afghanistan and hand the nation over to the Taliban – including the implementation of the God-awful decision at every level.  Unwittingly, Biden has been a major asset to the enemies of America and western democracies.  He has triggered a tragic farce that will roll on to the disadvantage of the United States and our allies for decades. 

So, there ‘tis.

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