I often argue, to the chagrin of other conservatives, that NPR is one of the most balanced “mainstream” news sources. Sure, it’s tilted to the left, but they at least make an effort to talk to the other side, unlike CNN or MSNBC., which simply demonize everyone with an “R” after their name. Proving my theory right once again, NPR interviewed Mary Beth Long, former assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs under President George W. Bush. She is coordinating the rescue of Americans left in Afghanistan even after Biden’s last plane left. Long says the effort is going to continue until every American is out. This woman is a hero and she did not mince words when describing the unreal chaos the Biden administration unleashed on Americans trapped in a war zone. NPR did not cut her off, skip to a commercial, or otherwise interrupt her to stop her from telling the truth.
MARY BETH LONG: There were many people who were there visiting family. There were contractors who were there who had substantial relationships with Afghans, who had green cards, some of whom became American citizens who didn’t necessarily go into the embassy or tell State Department where they were.
RACHEL MARTIN, BYLINE: So may I ask – the people who you’ve been working to get out, had they had any interaction with the U.S. government?
LONG: No, not until they received either text messages or emails. And the problem with that was severalfold. No. 1, the Taliban was sending out very similar text messages and email. The second problem with that was the State Department’s texts and emails asked these American citizens to go on websites where you fill out forms and you have to go to this other website. And then at the end of it all, you had to print out a form and take it in the last 48 hours to the embassy that you’ve printed out, I guess, on your printer that everybody does not have in Kabul. And that was the only way you could even get close to a gate. It’s insane.
Remember, Joe Biden’s administration was supposed to be the most competent administration in history. Instead, we have people who don’t know printers are in short supply in Kabul.
Long has bypassed the incompetent administration and is coordinating rescue missions with a private company.
MARTIN: So how has your organization been able to do it differently?
LONG: Several things – we were working with a number of other groups, and they had people on the ground, many of them who were literally going and picking up Afghans, particularly those U.S. citizens with Afghan citizenship – excuse me – or the reverse. That – some of them were old ladies. Some of them were pregnant. We would have waypoints and have everyone meet there and then load buses with as many U.S. citizens, green card holders and Special Immigrant Visa holders as we possibly could.
MARTIN: How did you get the planes?
LONG: Actually, several other people – many of them were donors or wealthy individuals. A couple were special interests. We had people on the ground, then, that connected our planes with those particular manifested Afghans and Americans that we had cleared.
Interviewer Rachel Martin did an excellent job letting Long talk without interrupting her. This is an interview that CNN would never do. Remember that the next time you want to get mad at NPR. Long then detailed the heroic efforts to save people that her organization is undertaking, including smuggling people overland. When these people make it out, they’re going to have blockbuster hits on their hands, and I hope the Daily Wire entertainment arm starts producing movies or series about it.
MARTIN: Without revealing identities, can you tell us about the people you’ve helped out?
LONG: Oh, there have been some heart-wrenching stories. One of the families right now, a U.S. citizen family that we cannot find are a man and wife and two female children who are Texas residents. And those poor people have gone to gate after gate after gate and heard the instructions of our U.S. State Department. And unfortunately, when they get there, the gates don’t open. And we’ve lost contact with that particular group.
MARTIN: What do you do now? Presumably, you still have a lot of people, U.S. citizens, Afghan citizens who are still in touch with you trying to get out.
LONG: We’re already pivoting. One of our great, terrific leaders saw this coming and has already been working resources (ph) to get people out over land and using other means.
MARTIN: So over land, presumably, that goes into Pakistan.
LONG: There’s also northern opportunities up through the north, Tajikistan and some of the northern border countries.
MARTIN: So you’ll keep going.
LONG: Oh, yes. As Americans, I mean, isn’t that what we’re all about, getting our people safe?
Is it too soon to ask Mary Beth Long to run for president in 2024? I also found this interview she did about changing her mind on Donald Trump’s foreign policy and publicly supporting him after signing a letter that said the opposite. It’s rare for a person like her to admit she was wrong about something. This woman is interesting and I like her.
Kudos to NPR and Martin for featuring such a good guest with so much experience and expertise. Shep Smith also had her on his program too, but not without trying to smear Donald Trump during the interview, as usual. He should learn from NPR’s Martin and just let his interviewee speak.