The Biden administration’s botched pullout from Afghanistan last week left an unknown number of American citizens stranded in the country along with potentially thousands of Afghan allies.
While the troubling situation has led private groups to mount rescue efforts of their own, reports are emerging indicating that the U.S. State Department is actively blocking people from leaving. The rescuers say that if anyone is killed as a result, the Biden administration will have their blood on its hands, Fox News reports.
Rick Clay, leader of the private rescue organization known as Plan B, told Fox News on Sunday that the State Department is all that stands between the evacuees and their escape from the grip of the Taliban.
Clay was not alone in making the assertion, as Fox News also cited 2 other sources who asked their names be withheld so as not to jeopardize the evacuation attempt.
Blood on Biden’s hands
“If one life is lost as a result of this, the blood is on the White House’s hands,” an anonymous rescue effort official said.
“The blood is on their hands,” the individual went on to say, pointing to the Biden administration, stressing, “It is not the Taliban that is holding this up – as much as it sickens me to say that – it is the United States government.”
The planes are seeking to land in Doha, Qatar, but Fox News was reportedly provided an email in which it stated that the rescue group was told its planes would need prior State Department approval.
“It is imperative that we get into Doha where there [are] other refugee centers,” Clay told the network, adding, “That is where I’ve asked for clearance.”
“This makes no sense”
“If we can get aircraft in and pick up people and bring them out, why can’t we take them to Doha to the refugee center or other refugee centers?” Clay said. “This makes no sense. We still have Americans we can get out.”
Clay presented Fox News with messages from the stranded people his group is attempting to extract, including one that read, “Please save us as soon as possible. My family and I are facing a lot of problems. My children’s health is deteriorating day by day due to many worries.”
“On the other hand, there are reports that the Taliban have recruited people in the Ministry of Technology and Communications to find people who will cooperate with US forces,” the message added. “If they find out anything about me, they will kill me and my family.”
As of Monday, the New York Post reported that Plan B’s American and Afghan refugees were still waiting on the tarmac at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport.