Updated: Aug 27
On Monday, Reach 871 (RCH871), a C-17 Globemaster III military cargo plane, took-off from Kabul International Airport with four times its rated load to safely evacuated more than 640
Afghan refugees to Qatar.
There were also horrific scenes at the airport as desperate refugees, unable to get inside the C-17 planes, instead clung to the wings and landing gear as the aircraft took off. Footage from Kabul Airport reported by multiple outlets showed at least two people falling to their death after the planes took off.
Officials said Monday that the government is prepared to take more than 20,000 Afghans who are candidates for Special Immigrant Visas, or SIVs, with them to U.S. bases. However, only a total of 700 people have left the country since Saturday.
"Our military embrace the opportunity to recognize their contributions to combined operations in Afghanistan by welcoming them into the U.S.," said the Pentagon's director for defense intelligence, Garry Reid, adding that officials are working to create capacity to support refugee relocation at temporary sites.
"At this point, we're looking to establish 22,000 spaces," Reid said. "We can expand if we need to."
After the heroic airmanship of the crew of Reach 871 the United States government temporarily halted the evacuation flights for Afghans with visas because it was focused on getting Americans in Afghanistan to safety, but that has not stopped Afghans from streaming towards Kabul’s airport in the hopes of getting a flight out of the country.
Now, however, that slim hope may be fading as the Taliban have surrounded the airport and it is only their forbearance that allows the evacuation flights to continue – everyone knows they could shootdown the arriving and departing aircraft at will.
Jeff Schogol, writing for the independent military news journal Task & Purpose, reports the Taliban have begun going door-to-door in Kabul looking for former Afghan government officials, police, and other members of the now defunct security forces, according to a reporter from Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty Afghanistan.
The Afghans, who had worked with the United States, are desperate to escape certain death at the hands of the Taliban and knowing there is a way out many have chosen to leave rather than fight.
However, not every Afghan is trying to leave rather than fight for their country.
The Hindustan Times reports Afghan soldiers, who had managed to hide themselves from Taliban troops, are reportedly arriving in the Panjshir Valley at the call of Ahmad Massoud, son of the renowned anti-Soviet Afghan leader Ahmad Shah Massoud.
The elder Massoud was assassinated by the Taliban immediately before 9/11, but his forces, dubbed the Northern Alliance, formed the core of the anti-Taliban fighters who joined the United States in the post-9/11 invasion and subsequent ouster of the first Taliban government.
Massoud is reportedly gathering strength in Panjshir Valley. The flag of the ‘Northern Alliance’ or the United Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan has been hoisted for the first time since 2001 in Panjshir valley.
Massoud has been joined by Afghan Vice President Amrulla Saleh who tweeted: "I will never, ever and under no circumstances bow to the Talib terrorists. I will never betray the soul and legacy of my hero Ahmad Shah Masoud, the commander, the legend and the guide. I won't disappoint millions who listened to me. I will never be under one ceiling with the Taliban. NEVER," said Saleh.
Massoud and Saleh’s defiance of the Taliban puts to lie Joe Biden’s claim that the Afghans wouldn’t fight for their own country.
But it also puts a question to every liberty-loving American: What would you do under the same circumstances?
Who will organize the resistance to tyranny if it comes to America? Where would you go? What would you do if you were being hunted, as the Oath Keepers and others who were at the US Capitol on January 6 are being hunted? What happens when a hostile government starts going door-to-door looking for “non-compliant” people?
We should all be outraged by the lies and incompetence that have characterized the disaster in Afghanistan, especially the Biden-led debacle that has unfolded over the past week. But we should also take it as a warning that we have one place to defend liberty – and it is here, and the time is now – because there aren’t any planes to safety from here.
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