Afghanistan falls – Now what?

  • Action #1: Press our government to speed the process and accept more refugees – both targeted women and citizens who aided our soldiers
  • Action #2 – Email action for legislators.
  • Action #3 – Email Biden
  • Action #4 – Sign this petition to Biden
  • Action #5 – Join in helping displaced Afghan citizens

As we watch this 20-year-long, two-trillion dollar ball of conflict unravel, the end of a 9/11 chain reaction that ultimately killed 6,000 Americans and wounded 20,722, we are bombarded by partisan shouting from both sides. Two great posts by historian Heather Cox Richardson help reconstruct the steps that brought us to this moment: here and here. Judd at Popular Information has a great post on how mainstream media is once again using untrustworthy narrators in assessing the withdrawal. The full details of the Taliban’s takeover, which was estimated to take 90 days, but took only ten, will be teased out over time. Meanwhile, some of that history is already being erased. (The link lauding Trump’s now-missing “accomplishment” page for his Taliban deal is here. Experts note that his “deal,” which undercut the legitimacy of the Afghan government, contained no enforcement mechanisms and included no penalties for failing to comply with its terms.)

Update: Statements from Rep. Ted Lieu, VoteVets.org.

In the meantime, here are some useful things to do.

Action #1: Press our government to speed the process and accept more refugees – both targeted women and citizens who aided our soldiers

(Action from Chop Wood Carry Water/Small Deeds Done)

Pro-West” Afghan women are now being hunted door-to-door, but only 44 senators signed on to a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas urging the administration to to take “swift, robust action to protect and support Afghan women leaders facing unparalleled danger following the Taliban’s violent sweep across Afghanistan and seizure of Kabul.” This would include, at minimum, a humanitarian parole category specifically for these women, streamlining the paperwork process to relocate them to safety, expanding processing capacity within U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, appointing an interagency refugee coordinator and increasing and supporting evacuation efforts.

Meanwhile, H.R. 3985 – “ALLIES Act of 2021″ still needs to be passed through the Senate.

Minimal script for senators who signed letter (includes Padilla & Feinstein): I’m calling from [zip code] and I want to thank the Senator for signing the letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas regarding the plight of Afghan women now in danger from the Taliban. In addition to pushing for all the actions in that letter to help these women, I want Senator [___] to support H.R. 3985 – “ALLIES Act of 2021” with a flexible higher limit as necessary to prevent a possible massacre of Afghan citizens whose actions to aid our military puts both them and their families in mortal danger.

Continue reading “Afghanistan falls – Now what?”