Top-level State Department officials claimed Monday the United States “facilitated the safe departure of four US citizens by overland route from Afghanistan. Embassy staff was present upon their arrival.”
“The United States facilitated the departure of four American citizens from Afghanistan via an overland route to a third country, a senior State Department official said Monday,” CNN reported, adding the official “confirmed that these are the first four Americans that ‘we’ve facilitated in this manner’ since the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.”
Fox News reporter Griff Jenkins also reported on the rescue, tagging Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in the post.
BREAKING: @StateDept says US has facilitated safe departure of four US citizens by overland route from Afghanistan. Embassy staff was present upon their arrival. They were in good condition. Taliban was aware and did not impede their transit… @SecBlinken @FoxNews
— Griff Jenkins (@GriffJenkins) September 6, 2021
But the organizer of the private mission is crying foul, insisting that the Biden State Department deserves little to no credit for rescuing American mom, Mariam, and her three children from Afghanistan, Fox News reported.
The network said Cory Mills and a private team of military veterans led the mission to rescue the family left behind by President Biden and his administration.
Mills told Fox News on Monday the public posturing from the State Department is “absolute nonsense.”
“The fact that they’re spinning this, trying to take 100% credit when they didn’t track this family, when they placated this family, when the mother, who was under extreme stress and extreme pressure, reached out to the State Department multiple times and got no help,” he said Monday.
Acquiring funding from private donors, including the Sentinel Foundation, Mills and his team worked for weeks to get Mariam’s family out Rep. Ronny Jackson, R-Texas, alerted him to their plight, the article stated.
On that note, Jackson shared a photo of Twitter of the family and the rescue crew. He included a thank you that made no mention of the State Department.
“Thank you to Cory Mills & the other patriots on his team for saving these BRAVE Americans!” the congressman tweeted.
After 2 weeks & multiple life threatening attempts, I am overjoyed to share that 4 U.S. citizens from #TX13 were part of the first successful ground evacuation since the U.S. left Kabul. Thank you to Cory Mills & the other patriots on his team for saving these BRAVE Americans! pic.twitter.com/1Tv9KRUgcE
— Ronny Jackson (@RepRonnyJackson) September 6, 2021
In fact. Jackson went so far as to say the State Department is “lying,” according to Fox News.
“The only thing the Biden Administration seems to be good at is patting itself on the back for a job horribly done,” he said. “This administration left my constituents behind in Afghanistan and now they’re lying about their role in getting these four American citizens out.”
Jackson further stated that the State Department “didn’t do anything for two weeks except put my constituents in danger and leave them stranded.”
“Only after Cory Mills and his team got them into the third country did State offer support by securing tourist visas,” the lawmaker said. “Cory and his team are brave patriots. Praise God that American veterans have more resolve than Joe Biden or his State Department.”
The first option to get the family out was to get them on one of the last government flights out of Kabul, but Mariam was unable to get past the Taliban. Repeatedly, she tried to reach the airport only to be denied.
“The final time Mariam tried to enter the airport, a Taliban fighter pointed a pistol at her head and warned her not to come back,” Fox News reported. “Shortly after that, Taliban fighters asked Kabul locals who knew Mariam how they could find her. Mills’ team rushed to get her and the children out of the city and into a safehouse.”
The second option was to get the family aboard a private charter flight from Mazar-i-Sharif airport, but the planes were never cleared to take off — some blame the Taliban for holding the planes, while organizers say the State Department didn’t get clearance.
The final option was an overland route to a neighboring country, which is not being named to avoid jeopardizing future rescue missions.
When asked if they were “overselling” their role in the dramatic rescue, the State Department told Fox News in an email: “The Department assisted four Americans to depart Afghanistan via an overland route on Monday. We provided guidance to them, worked to facilitate their safe passage, and Embassy officials greeted the Americans once they had crossed the border.”
“This is an attempt to save face by the administration for the Americans they left behind. This is a woman with three children from age 15 all the way down to two-years-old. And they did nothing to try to expedite this,” Mills said. “But at the very last minute, you have these ‘senior officials’ at the State Department trying to claim credit for this like ‘oh yeah look what we’ve done.'”
“It’s like we carried the ball to the 99-and-a-half yard line and them taking it that last half yard and being like ‘look what we did,’” he added.
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