When Will the American Hostages in Afghanistan Be Released?

A State Department spokesman says that there are still 60,000 Afghan interpreters in Afghanistan following the U.S. pullout in August. And, according to private rescue agencies that are evacuating Americans and Afghan allies, there are as many as 13,000 American citizens, legal permanent residents of the U.S., and their dependents still in Afghanistan.

These Americans are hostages just as surely as if a Taliban terrorist was holding a gun to their head 24 hours a day. They aren’t free to leave. They aren’t even free to move. Most are still in hiding trying to avoid the Taliban. So where’s the urgency, Mr. President? And why are you and your administration continuing to lie about the numbers of Americans still in Afghanistan?

While Biden never promised to evacuate the tens of thousands of Afghani interpreters who assisted U.S. forces for 20 years, the United States has a moral obligation to try to save as many as possible from the vengeance of the Taliban.

We could be doing better.

Wall Street Journal:

More than 60,000 Afghan interpreters and others who have applied for visas to seek shelter in the U.S. after working alongside American forces still remain in Afghanistan, a State Department official said Thursday.

About 33,000 Afghans, including principal applicants and their families, have already cleared the more-onerous vetting requirements and could be eligible for immediate evacuation. This is the first time that the State Department has provided a number on those left behind since the Afghanistan government collapsed this summer.

A total of 62,000 Afghans are believed to have been left behind, the official said.

The administration of Joe Biden doesn’t even breathe the word “hostage” knowing that once the thousands of Americans still in Afghanistan are seen as prisoners of the Taliban, the political fallout would put the finishing touches on the destruction of his presidency.

Biden’s only hope to avoid political catastrophe is to continue to work quietly behind the scenes and beg the Taliban to release our people.

Part of the problem is that the Kabul airport is only half functional. But there are other ways to get people out of Afghanistan than passenger aircraft. The sticking point is that there isn’t the will to get the job done.

Ed Morrissey sums it up better than anyone.

This is an utter disgrace, and it all goes back to Biden and his leadership team. And apart from occasional updates as State sees fit to give, it’s also an utter disgrace by our national media, which has chosen to ignore these abandoned Americans and allies rather than hold Biden accountable for his cowardly actions. Disgrace barely touches on it, in fact.

The total chaos caused by Biden’s botched withdrawal left thousands of Americans unprepared. Now, the State Department is complaining that the Americans who now want to leave didn’t register with the embassy–so, naturally, they didn’t know they had to get them out.

But that’s not what the president, the State Department, and the Pentagon have been saying. They recently claimed there were fewer than 12 Americans still in Afghanistan, but that’s a ludicrous number as private evacuation efforts have taken thousands of Americans out of the country since September. These efforts continue to this day.

Is it “cowardice” as Ed says? What would you call it?

Related: Biden Abandoned U.S. Military Families in Afghanistan

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