A U.S. Army colonel on the ground at the Kabul airport said U.S. troops were knowingly leaving behind U.S. citizens, according to a series of private texts leaked this week. In one text, the Army colonel wrote “Yes, we are fucking abandoning American citizens.”
The texts were reportedly shared between 82nd Airborne Col. Matt Rogers and Michael Yon, a former Special Forces soldier and war correspondent. Yon was among a number of private citizens who worked in private groups to help evacuate Americans stranded in Afghanistan.
Yon wrote that he had been working with a man by the name of Rick Clay who “had three jets on ground in Kabul.” Yon said, “I had arranged Taliban bringing American mother and three American children all the way to gate. Turned away by American Army.”
Rogers’ texts with Yon came as the veteran and war correspondent encountered difficulties getting people through to the Kabul airport.
Rogers wrote, “Everyone is having a hard time getting in the gate. [American citizens] can’t get past [Taliban] checkpoints.” Rogers then texted, “Are you trying to get people in?”
Yon responded “Any [American citizens]?”
Rogers texted back “Yes. All of them.”
Two minutes later, Rogers texted, “Yes, we are fucking abandoning American citizens.”
In a post on his subscription-based Locals account, Yon wrote “We had Americans at the gate in plenty of time. U.S. Army abandoned Americans to Taliban. I was personally involved in the rescue as was Rick Clay, David Eubank, Taliban helped us, until Colonel Matt Rogers from US Army said he cannot take them in.”
“Taliban actually delivered the American mother and children for us and stayed with them for hours until she told Taliban to go home,” Yon added.
Yon also told Just The News that the family stood waving passports, screaming that they are Americans once they got to the Kabul airport gate, but American forces would not come out to get them.
“You guys left American citizens at the gate of the Kabul airport,” Yon wrote Tuesday to the commander. “Three empty jets paid for by volunteers were waiting for them. You and I talked on the phone. I told you where they were. Gave you their passport images. And my email and phone number. And you left them behind.”
“Great job saving yourselves,” Yon added. Probably get a lot of medals.”
Just The News reported Yon’s account is backed by three dozen text and email exchanges with frontline Army officials in Afghanistan.
President Joe Biden had, at one point during the Afghanistan evacuation efforts, said U.S. forces could remain in the country beyond August 31 if it was needed to evacuate U.S. citizens.
In an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Biden said, “If there’s American citizens left, we’re gonna stay to get them all out.”
Biden ultimately chose to stick with his August 31 withdrawal. After the last U.S. troops left shortly before midnight on Monday, Biden and other members of his administration admitted up to 200 Americans who had been seeking evacuation were still stranded in Afghanistan.
On Tuesday, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said “we have Americans that get stranded in countries all the time.”
The effort to bring Americans who are still stranded is now in what the Biden administration is referring to as the “diplomatic phase.”
After the last U.S. military flight left Kabul, U.S. Marine Corps Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, the commander of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), said “While the military evacuation is complete, the diplomatic mission to ensure additional U.S. citizens and eligible Afghans who want to leave continues.”