The United States has left behind a massive amount of vehicles and equipment in Afghanistan, but pressure continues to grow to bring the translators who worked with American forces to the United States.
Some of this is coming from active duty and retired military personnel who built their own relationships with translators. Along with the usual refugee lobby.
The former are well-meaning while the latter are not, but it’s a bad idea across the board.
Former Iraqi translators who were bought to the United States have committed horrifying crimes and joined ISIS. Military and political leaders made the unfortunate decision to recruit translators by offering them the prospect of moving to the United States.
It would have been far cheaper in taxpayer funds to offer them six-figure salaries.
Foreign personnel in enemy territory should not be compensated with immigration. That’s a bad deal for Americans and as I wrote, it’s open-ended.
In one decade, the United States has handed out 75,250 of these visas to Iraqi and Afghan employees, and their dependents. Between 2007 and 2017, they represented 1 percent of all immigrant visas.
One Iraqi or Afghan employee brings a lot more dependents and expenses with him. In 2017, the 4,677 Iraqi and Afghan employees brought 13,713 dependents with them for a total of 18,390 refugees.
We are talking about bringing hundreds of thousands of people here from a part of the world whose values and beliefs are at odds with our own. The translators and their families will be at high risk of potential terrorist recruitment.
And Americans will pay the price.
Bilal Abood came to the United States on an SIV visa. Like many SIV applicants, he had worked as a contract linguist in Iraq. Like most SIV applicants, he claimed to have faced threats because of his work.
Once in the United States, Abood began viewing ISIS beheading videos and tweeted, “I pledge obedience to the Caliphate Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.” That was the leader of ISIS.
“The United States is the enemy of Allah,” he had said.
Jasim Mohammed Hasin Ramadon and Ali Mohammed Hasan Al Juboori, Mustafa Sataar Al Feraji, Ali Mohammed Hasan Al Juboori, and Yasir Jabbar Jasim, 5 Iraqis who who came to America on SIV visas, took part in the rape of an American woman in Colorado Springs who was abused so badly that there was blood splattered on the wall. Her mistake was sympathizing with the poor hapless refugees.
Ramadon, like the other SIV applicants celebrated by the media, had an NCO lobby for him. He appeared on Oprah, was featured in a book, and became a celebrity. Then he was hit with a restraining order for choking and threatening to kill his girlfriend. His crimes ended with the brutal rape of an older woman.
If we’re going to leave Afghanistan, then let’s leave. Don’t bring Afghanistan to America.
85% of SIV recipients have received refugee resettlement benefits. Over 17,000 have been dumped in California, over 10,000 in Texas, and over 7,000 in Virginia. In Virginia, that meant that over 800 Iraqi children and almost 2,000 Afghan children became part of the system. In Northern Virginia, SIV holders increased tenfold and doubled in just one year, putting a potential terrorist population close to the center of government, to top terror targets, including the headquarters of the CIA in Fairfax County.
Meanwhile a GAO report found that 60% of SIV refugees were unemployed after three months and 94% were on food stamps.
70% of Iraqi SIVs were unemployed.
In one single year, SIV refugees racked up $80 million in federal aid from two agencies alone. That doesn’t account for some federal refugee assistance programs that go on for as long as 5 years.
Leave the translators, along with the vehicles, the $40 million custom center, and all the other things we left in Afghanistan, there.
Americans have paid a high enough price for Afghanistan. We don’t need to go on paying even more.