President Joe Biden took so long to evacuate Afghans that assisted U.S.-led forces it amounts to killing them, a former serviceman said.
Sam Lerman believes the Biden administration was too inept to withdraw at-risk individuals from Afghanistan quickly enough to avoid Taliban retaliation.
“This is murder by incompetence,” the U.S. Air Force veteran said according to the Associated Press.
Lerman revealed he did not sleep last weekend because he was so busy processing Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) applications in Virginia, for Afghans who worked with Americans.
“Never in my life have I been ashamed to be an American before,” he said according to the newswire agency. “And I am, deeply.”
The remarks came as the Pentagon announced an ambitious last-ditch rescue plan to evacuate at least 22,000 SIV applicants, families members, high-profile Afghan women, journalists and more. The effort is arguably disorganized, and it is unclear how long the deteriorating security situation in Kabul will allow evacuations to continue.
U.S. forces temporarily suspended flights from Hamid Karzai International Airport for several hours, after hundreds of Afghan asylum seekers flooded the terminal building, stairway, and runway. U.S. troops fired two warning shots into the air and were fired on themselves.
Many of them were so desperate to leave they clung onto U.S. Air Force military transport planes with their arms and legs, even after take off. At least three stowaways plunged dozens of feet to their death while another was found dead in the landing gear well.
“The crowd was out of control,” one U.S. official said according to Reuters. “The firing was only done to defuse the chaos.”
This is a damning image for the Biden administration, and underscores the magnitude of the humanitarian crisis on the ground. It is unconscionable that the United States president is nowhere to be found.— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) August 16, 2021
Mr. President – Do your job and address the nation. pic.twitter.com/tTreEIgL3Y
North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies, who withdrew forces ahead of the Biden administration’s planned August 31 deadline, sent troops back to bolster security during evacuation, according to the Associated Press.
Kabul is the last major Afghan city to fall to the Taliban uprising that began months ago. The battle recently escalated after fighters seized control of the presidential palace.
Two weeks before the Biden administration’s planned a full military withdrawal, the United States sent thousands of new troops back into the Middle Eastern country. Their mission is to safeguard a large-scale airlift.
State Department spokesman Ned Price confirmed the United States has completely evacuated its embassy staff from Kabul and already lowered the U.S. flag.
U.S.-backed Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the presidential palace on Aug. 15. The shock decision came as Taliban insurgents threatened to overthrow the Afghan government. This brought a stunning end to a two-decade campaign, in which the United States and allies tried to keep peace in the country according to the New York Post.
Hundreds of Afghan asylum seekers are still waiting outside the airport for the next evacuation flight.
“I see people crying, they are not sure whether their flight will happen or not,” data analyst Massouma Tajik, 22, said according to Associated Press. “Neither am I.”
An extra 1,000 new American troops are expected to arrive at the airport on U.S. Air Force C-17 transport planes. The planes will then evacuate about 5,000 civilians from Afghanistan each day. The total number of U.S. soldiers deployed is expected to exceed 6000.