Friday, December 9, 2022

US Officials Accused of Giving the Taliban a ‘Kill List’

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( – Since the Taliban completed its takeover of Afghanistan, the United States’ primary concern has been for the safety of American citizens and allies still in the country. The Biden administration has come under increasing pressure to secure safe passage to the US for these individuals. But, it appears officials are actually helping the Taliban identify American and allied targets. 

American government officials in Kabul have given the Taliban a list of names belonging to those citizens, green card holders, and Afghans who should enter the perimeter of the airport. Officials intended for this move to make it easier to get them out of Afghanistan. However, legislators, military leaders, and public figures are alleging that the names now essentially form a “kill list” for the Taliban.

Any evacuee must pass through a Taliban checkpoint to access the airport, and about 100,000 have done so without issue since the fall of Kabul. However, the Biden administration’s identification of US citizens and allies, especially given the Taliban’s history of violence against America, has garnered public outrage. 

When a reporter asked him about the existence of the list on Thursday, August 26, President Joe Biden said he didn’t know whether the Taliban had one. Biden said that the US military has successfully cooperated with the Taliban to arrange passage this way in the past.

In an interview with Chuck Todd of NBC on August 29, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “The idea that we’ve done anything to put at further risk those that we’re trying to help leave the country is simply wrong.”

Blinken said the individuals who were identified lacked the “necessary credentials,” and that the Taliban were notified so these people could leave the country.

Regardless, many people still feel this is an unacceptable security breach. How many more missteps will occur before the crisis in Afghanistan reaches its conclusion?

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