A network of “hundreds of thousands” of people, including analysts, are using satellite imagery and other tools to help Afghan interpreters who worked for U.S. forces to evade Taliban checkpoints in Kabul and bring them to the safety of the airport.
The network’s efforts are necessary because the Biden administration is offering little assistance to the 20,000 interpreters and their families who are at great risk every second they remain in Afghanistan.
Afghanistan war veteran and CIA analyst Matt Zeller is part of the group.
Zeller described a “digital Dunkirk” campaign working to evacuate the Afghan interpreters. He said “hundreds of thousands” of people joined the movement after just a few weeks, but that it could grow into the millions by the time it’s over.
“If you served in the Afghan war and you still care about these people, chances are you’re probably part of the digital Dunkirk,” Zeller told Fox News.
He said it started as an “army of veterans” getting pinged by Afghans, but that the network has grown to include organizations for human rights, faith and political advocacy.
Zeller told Fox News, “It’s not just veterans. Literally it’s pastors, it’s my mom, it’s my relatives, people who have never served in Afghanistan … widows, widowers, children of people who served.”
The Kabul airport is a hellish place for Americans. It’s even worse for Afghans looking to get out of the country. One woman, a U.S. citizen, was forced to leave her family behind because they weren’t citizens yet and Zeller says, “That is being played out over and over and over again.”
“I’ve got friends who have told me that they’ve had literally U.S. citizens standing in the crowd waving their blue passports screaming ‘I’m a U.S. citizen,’ and the Marines can’t come get them,” Zeller said.
Zeller said the U.S. has a responsibility to evacuate the Afghan interpreters.
If they aren’t evacuated now, then “they’re gonna be dead, and we’ll regret for the rest of our lives having failed them,” Zeller told Fox News.
Zeller says he would love it if someone called him and asked him to help with the evacuation in Afghanistan. “I don’t know of a single veteran that I’ve spoken with who feels any differently.”
He said he can’t imagine what it must be like for the U.S. troops at the Kabul airport “who have to stand 50 meters away from the Taliban and watch them be thugs and not be able to do a damn thing about it.”
Gunfire could be heard throughout voice memos a female journalist attempting to leave Afghanistan sent Fox News. Based on her location, the U.S. troops at the Kabul airport could likely hear the shots.
Zeller believes that there is a solution to the problem of the interpreters and the Americans struggling to get to the airport and it rests with one man.
Zeller said the campaign to evacuate the interpreters “is a whole of America effort … minus the one guy, the only guy, who can give the order to actually truly save these people,” referring to President Biden.
“I was appalled that the secretary of defense said he didn’t have the ability to guarantee the safe movement of Americans to the airport in Kabul,” Zeller told Fox News. “He absolutely does.”
“He has the United States military,” he continued. “What he doesn’t have is the orders to move those people.”
Biden doesn’t have the guts to give those orders. But his dream of being remembered as the president who ended the “forever war” has been dashed. He will now be remembered as the president who allowed the most shameful military episode in American history to unfold on his watch.