Americans Blocked From Returning From Afghanistan

Americans Blocked From Returning From Afghanistan

Americans Blocked From Returning From Afghanistan

The headline seems unbelievable, but it is the truth. There are Americans, greencard holders, and SIV holders sitting in Abu Dhabi because the State Department is dilly-dallying.

And because they can’t leave the hangar where they are sitting in Abu Dhabi, these Americans are watching conditions get steadily worse. So how did this happen? Why is the State Department keeping American citizens out of the country? The long and the short of it is… paperwork, apparently.

“They will not allow a charter on an international flight into a U.S. port of entry,” Bryan Stern, a founder of non-profit group Project Dynamo, told Reuters of Customs and Border Protection. The evacuation on Tuesday was part of a multi-group effort from Project Dynamo, the Human First Coalition and The Shadow Warriors Project to bring the Americans home.”

Families are currently being held in a hangar at an airport in Abu Dhabi, according to organizers of the evacuation. The conditions are poor, Fox News has learned, with limited food and water, no shower options, poor bathrooms, and restricted movement due to them being on an airfield, organizers say. Families are sleeping on tile floors and hard plastic chairs with limited access to potable water.”

Stern said the initial plan was to move the passengers to a different charter jet in the United Arab Emirates, which Customs and Border Protection cleared to ultimately land at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. That plan then changed to landing at Dulles airport in Virginia, before the flight was ultimately denied any landing rights in the U.S.”

Among those on board are 28 Americans, 83 green card holders and six people with U.S. Special Immigration Visas, including 59 children, Reuters reported.”

Reuters has now gotten a statement from the State Department, whose answer basically is “we’re working on it.”

“Our embassy staff in the UAE has been working around the clock to verify the accuracy of the passenger manifest and is coordinating with DHS/Customs and Border Protection on the ground to ensure the passengers are screened and vetted before they are permitted to fly to the United States,” a State Department spokesperson said.”

“We expect the passengers to continue onward travel tomorrow morning,” the spokesperson added.”

So NOW the State Department and DHS is super concerned with verifying who is coming into the country? The Biden administration revealed just how little it cared about keeping Haitian illegals out, and apparently random unvetted Afghans made it all the way to the United States without a screening because the administration apparently just wanted to report bodies on planes as a win – and boy are we paying for that now – but one non-profit group manages to get a chartered flight out of Afghanistan, and gets more Americans out of the country than the Biden administration has been able to do in weeks, and THEY need to be verified? How long does it take the United Arab Emirates embassy staff, “working around the clock,” to verify the identities of American citizens?

I think there are a couple of reasons why this is happening at a snail’s pace. One is likely the time difference. The UAE is eight hours ahead of Eastern Daylight Time, which is essentially an entire workday. However, you would think that embassies are used to being up at all hours in order to be in contact with the State Department.

Another problem is probably getting to the records in the United States. If it has not slipped your notice, many states are still significantly slowed down on processing state paperwork thanks to short staffing, which is a result of COVID-19 distancing and remote work. In many states, even getting a driver’s license renewed has become a logistical struggle as people compete for appointments to just even walk into a DMV. The State Department itself warns of huge delays in simply getting a passport – even paying for the “expedited” process is not a guarantee that you will get your passport any time sooner. You really think that anyone there is manning the phones and checking email at all hours any more?

Meanwhile, Americans get to wait in Abu Dhabi, in a hangar, with nowhere to go, because the Biden administration can’t get a fire lit under its ass to let citizens and greencard holders get back home. The NGO, Project Dynamo, is trying to keep people – espcially the kids – calm and occupied, as this video taken from their Instagram shows.

The deeply cynical part of me is wondering if the Biden State Department is making the flight wait in Abu Dhabi until it figures out how to steal credit for “bringing” more Americans home.

Featured image: Jet planes in flight by The Pixelman via Pixabay, cropped and modified, Pixabay license

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