Kansas leader’s remarks about Afghan refugees are shameful and harmful

Ty Masterson sows seeds of discrimination by hinting that evacuees could come with COVID-19.

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Editorials

September 20, 2021 - 9:02 AM

Afghan refugees crouch in a group as British military secure the perimeter outside the Baron Hotel, near the Abbey Gate, in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021. (Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

During and after the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, Republicans roundly blamed President Joe Biden for leaving our Afghan allies vulnerable. This was a valid, though highly hypocritical, criticism, since the peace deal negotiated by the Trump administration would have walked away from these allies even sooner.

After the Trump administration betrayed and abandoned our Kurdish allies in Syria two years ago, many were slaughtered and none were evacuated by the United States. ISIS was strengthened, and Trump defended the decision as one he had to make to get us out of forever fighting in the Middle East. The only difference, in other words, is that there was no effort, before, during or after our withdrawal, to protect those we were leaving behind.

In leaving our Afghan allies unprotected, Kansas U.S. Rep. Jake LaTurner said that we had “let down our allies and significantly damaged our presence on the world stage.”

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