From Fox News:
The State Department refused to grant official approval for private evacuation flights from Afghanistan to land in third countries, even though the department conceded that official authorization would likely be needed for planes to land in those nations, an email reviewed by Fox News shows.
Furthermore, the State Department explicitly stated that charter flights, even those containing American citizens, would not be allowed to land at Defense Department (DOD) airbases. U.S. officials have pointed to possible security threats from landing charter planes at military bases, saying that they lack the resources on the ground to fully verify flight manifests.
Eric Montalvo, who organized a series of private flights evacuating those stranded in Afghanistan, shared that email and others with Fox News after his evacuation efforts were repeatedly hampered by the federal bureaucracy.
A Sept. 1 email that a State Department official sent to Montalvo underscores the extent to which private evacuation efforts have run into bureaucratic roadblocks.
“No independent charters are allowed to land at [Al Udeid Air Base], the military airbase you mentioned in your communication with Samantha Power. In fact, no charters are allowed to land at an [sic] DoD base and most if not all countries in the Middle Eastern region, with the exception of perhaps Saudi Arabia will allow charters to land,” the official wrote.
“You need to find another destination country, and it can’t be the U.S. either.”
The official noted that though some third countries “may require” official approval from the State Department before accepting the private charter flights, the department “will not provide” that approval.
“Once you have had discussions with the host/destination country and reached an agreement, they may require some indication from the USG that we ‘approve’ of this charter flight. DOS will not provide an approval, but we will provide a ‘no objection’ to the destination country government via the U.S. Embassy in that country.”
Read the full report here.
??????: Biden Launches Incoherent 3-Minute Rant Over Whether Americans Can Get Out of Afghanistan
President Biden held a disastrous press briefing Friday when he finally took answers from the media; launching into a three-minute rant about whether Americans can safely reach the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.
“You said there’s no circumstances where American citizens cannot get to the airport. That doesn’t square with the reporting on the ground. Are you saying any American who wants to get to the airport can get there?” asked one reporter.
“I thought the question was, how can they get through the airport, outside the airport, the answer is, to the best of our knowledge, the Taliban checkpoints, they are letting through, people […] That’s why we had to, I guess yesterday, or the day before? We went over the wall, and brought in, how many?” said the Commander-in-Chief.
“My guess is, no matter what, under what circumstances, we, anyone, there’s not a whole lot of Afghanis, there’s a whole lot of Afghanis who just as soon come to America,” he concluded.
A report from Reuters highlights the scope of the crisis unfolding in Afghanistan as the agency claims the Taliban now control 2,000 American-made vehicles and between 30 and 40 aircraft.
“U.S. officials tell Reuters that the current intelligence indicates that the Taliban control at least 2,000 U.S.-made armored vehicles, between 30 and 40 aircraft and an untold number of small arms,” writes a reporter from the global news agency.
“Joe Biden creates the Taliban Army and Air Force,” posted former Trump official Richard Grenell on Twitter.
Watch the bizarre comments above.
ABANDONED in AFGHANISTAN: US Embassy Posts Dire Message, ‘Don’t Rely on the US Government’
The US Embassy in Afghanistan posted a dire message on its official webpage Tuesday, saying the office has “suspended operations” and Americans can no longer rely on “United States government assistance.”
“The U.S. Embassy in Kabul suspended operations on August 31, 2021. While the U.S. government has withdrawn its personnel from Kabul, we will continue to assist U.S. citizens and their families in Afghanistan from Doha, Qatar,” states the memo.
“The Embassy will continue to provide information via the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), the Embassy web page, Travel.State.Gov, and Facebook and Twitter. Consular services remain available outside Afghanistan. To locate the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate click here,” adds the warning.
“Make contingency plans to leave when it is safe to do so that do not rely on U.S. government assistance,” warns the message.
Latest security alert on US Embassy In Afghanistan website: “Make contingency plans to leave when it is safe to do so that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.” pic.twitter.com/d2DujvpSZ2
— Shannon Bream (@ShannonBream) August 31, 2021
Read the full memo below:
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul suspended operations on August 31, 2021. While the U.S. government has withdrawn its personnel from Kabul, we will continue to assist U.S. citizens and their families in Afghanistan from Doha, Qatar.
The Embassy will continue to provide information via the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), the Embassy web page, Travel.State.Gov, and Facebook and Twitter. Consular services remain available outside Afghanistan. To locate the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate click here.
The Department of State has no higher priority than the safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas. U.S. citizens still in country should:
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
to receive security updates and ensure you can be located in an emergency.
- Review your personal security plans.
- Be aware of your surroundings and local security developments at all times.
- Keep a low profile.
- Notify a trusted person of your travel and movement plans.
- Make contingency plans to leave when it is safe to do so that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.
- Monitor local media.
- Please review, “What the Department of State Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis.”
Resources for U.S. citizens in Afghanistan:
- State Department – Consular Affairs Afghanistan Call Center
833-741-2777 or 606-260-4379
- Embassy Citizens’ Services Page
- Afghanistan Country Information
- Afghanistan Travel Advisory
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.
- Refer to our website for the latest Alerts and Messages for U.S. citizens.
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information related to COVID-19.
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Afghanistan.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to ensure you receive Alerts and other information
For information on Special Immigrant Visas see: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/special-immg-visa-afghans-employed-us-gov.html