The painful last chapter of America’s longest war came to a merciful end on Monday as the final U.S. troops left Afghanistan, days after 13 soldiers were killed in a terrorist attack at Kabul’s airport.
As America reckons with the catastrophic consequences of a 20-year war that cost thousands of American lives and trillions of dollars, Americans are left asking: What did we get for all that blood and treasure? The answer seems to be thousands of unvetted refugees who reports say are now being allowed to pour into the country following President Joe Biden’s chaotic and violent evacuation.
Will terrorists exploit visas?
Without bothering to rigorously screen refugees, the Biden administration had sought to get as many Afghans out of the country as possible before the Tuesday deadline. Prior to the final departure on Monday, reports emerged alleging that the Biden administration was handing out blank visas.
An American in Afghanistan, David Fox, told Fox News last week that he received a generic visa form from the State Department that Afghans looking for a ticket to America are duplicating to obtain fraudulent entry.
“What do you think happened when these people received a document like this that has no name? Of course, they printed out a thousand copies,” he said, according to Newsweek. “You have tens of thousands of Afghans who now have this kind of ridiculous, bogus document that the State Department created.”
Echoing those concerns, a former FBI agent of 24 years who now works as a lecturer, Kenneth Gray, told the Washington Examiner that he expected ISIS and Al-Qaida to exploit the Biden administration’s suspension of typical vetting procedures and board American airplanes leaving Afghanistan.
“The threat of having Islamic State or al-Qaida come into the country is not increased through the southwest border,” he said, as the Examiner reported. “It’s the entry of al-Qaida and Islamic State in the groups of refugees that are being taken out of Afghanistan and possibly to the United States because of the lack of vetting procedures that would normally go on to expedite getting all of these people out of Afghanistan.”
What did America get from the war?
More than 100,000 people were evacuated after Aug. 14, the day before Kabul fell to the Taliban, according to the Associated Press. Meanwhile, over 200 Americans reportedly remained in the war-torn nation on Monday, as terrorists fired rockets at the airport and the U.S. officially finished its mission.
In what would be the final hours of the war, ISIS-K bombers made it past Taliban checkpoints Thursday and blew themselves up, killing American soldiers in the country for the first time since February 2020.
According to the U.K.’s Daily Mail, some 100 Afghans evacuated from Kabul have been found on terror watch lists, including one person with possible ISIS ties. The development comes as thousands of Afghans begin arriving in America through Virginia’s Dulles Airport to be resettled in communities across America.
How many of them are genuine SIVs (Special Immigrant Visas) and others, such as translators, who helped the U.S. war effort? Fox News has been told that less than half are, according to primetime anchor Tucker Carlson. It appears many Afghan refugees, like those from Central America, are simply seeking a new life. But for many, the question remains: How many are potential terrorists?
Is this what we have to show for 20 years of war?