News & Politics

Here's One Guy No One Thought Joe Biden Would Leave Behind in Afghanistan

(AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

Who else has Joe Biden and his crack Secretary of State Antony Blinken left behind in Afghanistan?

Besides “hundreds” of “stranded” Americans, there’s news that the president left behind a guy who once helped saved his life in the most desperate of circumstances.

The Wall Street Journal reports that an Afghan interpreter who helped save then-Senator Biden’s life was left behind like so many others.

Thirteen years ago, Afghan interpreter Mohammed helped rescue then- Sen. Joe Biden and two other senators stranded in a remote Afghanistan valley after their helicopter was forced to land in a snowstorm. Now, Mohammed is asking President Biden to save him.

Biden was part of a team of senators in Afghanistan whose helicopter was forced down in a “blinding” snowstorm in the treacherous Afghan mountains.

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The Journal reports that Biden used that incident to puff up his “bad ass” bona fides on the campaign trail.

“If you want to know where al Qaeda lives, you want to know where [Osama] bin Laden is, come back to Afghanistan with me,” he said on the campaign trail in October, just months after the February rescue. “Come back to the area where my helicopter was forced down…in the middle of those mountains. I can tell you where they are.”

Left unsaid was what it took to save him from the Taliban fighters bent on killing any foreigners . The day before the rescue, the 82nd Airborne killed two dozen Taliban soldiers nearby.

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The Journal reports that the interpreter, identified only as Mohammed to protect his identity, spun up with members of the 82nd Airborne and Blackwater contractors. They jumped into Humvees and drove hours to save Biden and Senators Chuck Hagel and John Kerry.

As a private security team with the former firm Blackwater and U.S. Army soldiers monitored for any nearby Taliban fighters, the crew sent out an urgent call for help. At Bagram Air Field, Mohammed jumped in a Humvee with a Quick Reaction Force from the 82nd Airborne Division and drove hours into the nearby mountains to rescue them.

The team rescued the senators, who stayed warm in the helos and joked about tossing snowballs at the Taliban. Kerry later cracked, “We were going to send Biden out to fight the Taliban with snowballs, but we didn’t have to do it.”

Mohammed’s attempt to get into the U.S. has been held up for months by red tape. Veterans,  who served with the interpreter on the more than “100 firefights,” made appeal after appeal to to get him out. He got to the Kabul airport, but when he was told his wife and children would not be able to come with him, he left and went into hiding.

Related: As Afghanistan Fell, Taliban Gave the U.S. the Option to Secure Kabul. The U.S. Refused.

Now Mohammed is begging Biden to get them all out: “Hello Mr. President: Save me and my family. Don’t forget me here.”

He says he can’t leave his house.

Related: Pentagon Respond to Reports of Dogs Left Behind in Afghanistan

And now Joe’s gone.

Though many interpreters who helped American forces have been saved, Mohammed’s feeling the truth of Otter’s words to Flounder in Animal House: “you f**ked up, you trusted us.”

Joe got what he wanted out of the relationship: a campaign story.

Mohammed’s going to have to find another way out.

Joe’s done here.