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Why does Team Biden insist on telling lies that even it can’t keep up for more than a day? Does it really think its shameless spinning can contain the public fury or that Americans will just forget those left behind in the dishonorable exit from Afghanistan?
It’s been insisting that fewer than 100 Americans are stranded in the land the Taliban now controls. But a reported 143 US citizens and green-card holders alone are stuck at Mazar-i-Sharif’s airport, booked on waiting planes the Taliban won’t let leave.
More than a week after President Joe Biden declared his evacuation an “extraordinary success,” countless Americans remain de facto hostages. And his minions’ efforts to spin away the truth is pathetic.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday that “just under” 100 Americans were left in Afghanistan, but others, including Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., put the number of those wanting out at 500 — all victims of Biden’s broken promise to “stay until we get them all out.”
The administration won’t even estimate how many hundreds of green-card holders — lawful permanent U.S. residents — remain. Heck, it barely deigns to mention them.
The six nonprofit-chartered planes ready to evacuate 143 Americans have been grounded for over a week in Mazar-i-Sharif, delayed “first as State Department officials put up roadblocks and then as the Taliban issued demands, sources with first-hand information” told RealClearPolitics’ Susan Crabtree. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., who’s been aiding the effort, fumed on Twitter that he’s “furious” at “our government’s delay & inaction.”
On Tuesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken insisted paperwork was the only problem for the “relatively small number of Americans” waiting in Mazar-i-Sharif. The next day, he finally conceded that the Taliban won’t let the flights depart.
When a reporter asked Psaki about the “hostage situation,” she pretended the question was about how moderates might kill “the Build Back Better agenda” — before admitting it was about actual lives on the line and huffing, “No, that is not what we would characterize it as.”
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Of course not — when has Team Biden ever come clean about the crises it’s caused, from the border surge to abandoned Americans? Reports indicate the Taliban are using the hostages Biden left them as leverage for cash and/or official recognition of their just-announced government, which includes six terrorists under international sanctions.
The Mazar-i-Sharif flights aren’t the only ones blocked — and the Taliban aren’t always doing the blocking. The State Department has refused to OK some flights that rescue groups chartered to evacuate Americans and allies, show e-mails that military lawyer and retired Marine Eric Montalvo shared with Fox News. Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) last week accused State of blocking another planned rescue.
Blinken confessed it’s a “challenge” to evacuate people without “personnel on the ground.” No kidding. That’s why Biden initially vowed to keep a presence in Afghanistan until every American and ally was out — and why his team is now trying to pretend it hasn’t abandoned thousands of them to a terrorist group with every incentive to use them as leverage.