‘Go and tell the State Department to f*** themselves’: What the Taliban said to Americans and Afghans who have been shot at and beaten at checkpoints while trying to escape Kabul
- Taliban fighters ‘were creating as much problems as they could’ to prevent Americans, Afghan-Americans and Afghan allies from leaving Afghanistan
- The Washington Examiner interviewed evacuees who had reached out to Congressional offices to get help fleeing the country
- One Afghan-American citizen recalled a Taliban guard telling him, ‘Go and tell the State Department to f*** themselves’
- That citizen and his family made it out by running through a fire fight at the Kabul airport, the day of the ISIS-K attack on the facility
- ‘I know it was stupid, but I took just my chance. I ran toward the soldiers. I had my passport in my hand – shouting that I’m an American citizen,’ he said
- Other Americans said they were fired at and beaten by Taliban fighters who were standing guard outside the Kabul airport
The Washington Examiner interviewed evacuees who had reached out to Congressional offices to get help fleeing the country, including one Afghan-American citizen who had sought help from the office of Rep. Don Bacon, a Nebraska Republican.
That citizen had been told by the State Department to go to the Interior Ministry for help, only to encounter a Taliban guard who told him, ‘Go and tell the State Department to f*** themselves.’
Afghans walk past a Taliban military checkpoint in Kabul, Afghanistan on Thursday. More anecdotes are coming out about how the Taliban ‘were creating as much problems as they could’ to prevent Americans, Afghan-Americans and Afghan allies from departing the country
A group of Taliban fighters patrol in front of the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul on Thursday. Citizens trying to leave the country told Congressional offices that they were fired at and beaten by Taliban fighters
The citizen, his wife and four small children made it to the United States by showing up at the Kabul airport – the same day as the ISIS-K terror attack.
During a firefight, in which guards shot at people’s feet to disperse the crowd, he told the Examiner he made a run for it.
‘I know it was stupid, but I took just my chance. I ran toward the soldiers. I had my passport in my hand – shouting that I’m an American citizen.’
Another U.S. citizen in Kabul also reported being fired upon at the airport by the Taliban.
The citizen was on the phone with Bacon’s deputy chief of staff Felix Ungerman, a retired Air Force colonel.
‘He goes, “Oh my God, he’s shooting.” And I said, “Please get away from there, go get to safety,’ Ungerman told The Examiner. ‘His phone cut off while I could hear gunshots going off, and I couldn’t get in touch with him again. I tried calling his cellphone every couple of hours to see if I could get him, tried an email, sent him a text message.’
Ungerman didn’t hear from the citizen for several days.
‘[H]e actually texted me back and said, “Yeah, I’m OK, but now what do I do?” I’m like, “You get to somewhere safe, and you stay there until we can – our government can offer some solutions to help you,”‘ Ungerman said.
One major problem, the Examiner also reported, was that members of the Taliban didn’t want to let Afghan-Americans through, even if they showed up to the Kabul airport with their blue U.S. passports.
And another source told the publication about a group of American citizens showing up to the airport – the Taliban only let a few people through, before beating the rests and firing gunshots over their heads.
The U.S. government has estimated only 100 or 200 Americans remain in Afghanistan, however Senate Republicans – led by Sen. Tom Cotton – demanded Thursday to know the number of Americans, Green Card holders and people eligible for special immigrant visas were left behind.
On Wednesday, a State Department official said a ‘majority’ of SIV applicants didn’t make it out of Afghanistan before the U.S. pull-out.