All posts tagged: human rights first

EXCLUSIVE: What happened to “Evacuate Our Allies”?

By Monica Chen The shocking chaos and destruction in Afghanistan has escalated in recent weeks as the Taliban rapidly occupied the country following the sudden and poorly planned withdrawal of the U.S. military. But this withdrawal did not have to happen. For months, an Iraq War veteran pressed the Biden administration and members of Congress to implement an organized plan to evacuate Afghan allies to Guam. The plan, called “Evacuate Our Allies,” identified 18,000 Afghans who had helped the U.S. military, as well as their families, totaling 70,000-80,000 people who needed to be evacuated. It worked out logistics and gathered support from more than a hundred veterans and humanitarian organizations. The governor of Guam also supported evacuation to the U.S. territory. Chris Purdy, who served in Iraq from 2004 to 2011 and is the program manager of Veterans for American Ideals, put together “Evacuate Our Allies.” VFAI is a project of New York-based nonprofit Human Rights First. “Our plan was pretty reasonable, we thought,” Purdy said this week. “We were asking not to create any …