The Barbarians Minding the Gates | National Review

The Barbarians Minding the Gates | National Review

Afghans and Spanish citizens residing in Afghanistan board a military plane during evacuations at the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, August 18, 2021. (Ministry of Defense of Spain/Handout via Reuters )

The Wall Street Journal has a report on the difficulty people are having getting past the Taliban to the airport:

At Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport, crowds of Afghans continued to gather along the perimeter, trying to flee the country. The Taliban once again repulsed these crowds with violence, beating and whipping families trying to get through the checkpoints and unleashing volleys of gunfire in the air, according to witnesses.

Beyond the Taliban checkpoints, U.S. Marines at the gates of the airport focused mostly on keeping anyone from coming close. As a result, many of the evacuation flights continued leaving with empty seats even as tens of thousands of Afghans who worked with Western governments clamored for a way out before the Taliban track them down.

And Allahpundit has a good round-up of various on-the-ground reports of what’s happening outside the airport.

The short story is that we are relying on the Taliban to let our people and our allies through. The Taliban have an incentive not to push it too far, since they just want us to leave without tempting us to hit them. If that calculation were to change, though, this could turn into an even more nightmarish debacle.

As it is, it is a national humiliation that we are dependent on the good will of our enemies — harassing and beating people presumably within sight of our troops — to get terrified Americans and Afghans to safety.

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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.