Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) told Breitbart News Saturday the Biden administration is being completely “disingenuous” on the number of Americans stranded in Afghanistan, estimating the number to be hundreds more than officially claimed.
He added that Republicans are currently working to make the identity of the suicide bomber who killed 13 U.S. servicemembers and hundreds of Afghans public, because the American people deserve to know who was behind the attack.
On Friday, Issa announced his team successfully facilitated the escape of a pregnant American woman, Nasria, from the Taliban-controlled country. Her story, he said, is just “one of hundreds.”
Issa explained that his team was able to get her to outer checkpoints of the gate of the Kabul airport during the U.S. military-controlled evacuation that ended at the end of August “only to have nobody come out to get her.” He said they may never know why, but it could have been because her husband, who is a visa applicant, was with her during that attempt. However, Issa said, her case could have been “just one of the many that fell through the cracks.”
So this week, she made the “gut-wrenching decision, having been through those gates, having been beat by the Taliban, kicked in the stomach as a pregnant woman” to leave without him.
“She had to make a decision. Did she leave yesterday without her husband or not? And she made the decision to go. Her husband made the courageous decision, he will try to get out later,” Issa said, adding that they will make sure that they get him out eventually as well.
“But she had to make that decision for her child,” he continued, adding her escape came with no thanks to the State Department.
“And by the way. There were 200 people on the plane. Almost all American citizens from a country … they said there are maybe 100 more American citizens,” Issa added. “The absurdity that they’re still saying there’s only 100 American citizens after we got more than 100 out on just one flight tells you how disingenuous this administration is.”
When asked about Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s claim that there are roughly 100 Americans left in Afghanistan — a claim the administration has made for weeks — Issa said the math simply does not add up.
“When 63 members of Congress add up to nearly 200 Americans — 63 Republican members of Congress working, nearly 200 American citizens, the arithmetic of — what would happen if we went through Republicans and Democrats, House and Senate, just for what we’re working? The reality is you end up with that number – you hear from more reliable sources. That it’s likely to be over 500 American citizens. And when you add in their family, you end up well over 1,000,” he said.
Then, Issa continued, you get to the “real heart of it,” which is the promise to interpreters and security forces, that we would take them, “and we didn’t.”
“So the number is perhaps 1,000 Americans and their families but the number, when you include those we made promises to, is far greater,” the California Republican said.
“But why does the number matter? If you leave one American there as a result of your ineptness, of your lies –,” Issa continued, blasting Biden for claiming that it was unlikely for Afghanistan to fall even after his own intelligence people told him things were collapsing.
“I’m going to take an assertion I believe is true. I believe they thought that, basically, they were handing this thing over to the Taliban in some sort of a peaceful way. That things were going to be different. And if you believe, if they believe, that a terrorist organization with a history of its links to Osama Bin Laden and harboring him, if they thought that that somehow [this] was going to be a kinder, gentler group, then the real problem isn’t just the people we left behind,” Issa told Breitbart News Saturday.
“It’s the administration that can make a deal with terrorists and then not hold them accountable to any part of the deal they agreed to. They were taking the country by force and President Biden and his associates were telling us it was ok and that things were under control. And that’s why so many Americans were caught off guard, were still in country, because they were told it was ok when it wasn’t,” he added, noting that the U.S. lost all of its intelligence capabilities when it pulled out of Afghanistan. Then, days before the formal departure, a suicide bomber “undoubtedly released” because of the U.S. departure murdered 13 Americans and hundreds of Afghans.
Issa also addressed the news of the Pentagon admitting the Biden administration “may have killed up to 10 civilians, including up to seven children, in a drone strike in Kabul on August 29 that was intended to kill an Islamic State-Khorasan attacker.”
Issa noted the truth only began to come out because a whistleblower was leaking it, forcing the Department of Defense to come clean.
“You can imagine, as we take the majority, how many more whistleblowers there will be, as we get the subpoena, how many more whistleblowers there will be,” he said, adding that Republicans are reaching out now, hoping to work with whistleblowers and reveal the truth when they take the majority. However, he said, they are still hoping to “expose what we can expose” today.
Currently, he said, Republicans are working on identifying the suicide bomber who killed 13 Americans and 200 Afghans.
“That’s one of the areas that right now we’re working on, and we expect to make it public in the days to come,” he added.