KABUL, Afghanistan — The diplomatic mission in Kabul is set to announce the issuance of Special Immigrant Visas to 1,000 Afghan interpreters who were recently murdered by the Taliban, Duffel Blog has learned.
"We've accumulated over 12,000 applications over the years and have been taking a lot of heat to get them processed," Ambassador James B. Cunningham told reporters. "Turns out the easiest ones to issue are for the folks who the Taliban already found in their homes and executed."
State Department officials in the region — cloistered away in fortified compounds where they can shuffle their papers in safety — have long been accused of gross mismanagement of the Special Immigrant Visa Program. In 2011, a total of three visas were issued to Afghan interpreters. While the numbers have increased modestly since then, progress is still slow for the thousands of translators who have not yet been kidnapped while drinking tea at a local cafe, been decapitated while being filmed for propaganda purposes, been thrown off a bridge after being burned alive, or simply murdered by family members for their association with the infidels.
"It is an incredible honor to finally be welcomed into the country I served for all those years," Panra Kakar, an interpreter who waited over four years for his visa, probably would have said if he were still alive. "I can't wait to see all my friends again," he had been fond of saying.
"I mean, yeah, it would have been nice if Kakar could have made it here in one piece," Allen Berger, a soldier who was dragged to safety by the brave interpreter during a firefight in Helmand Province, told Duffel Blog. "But I guess this is the best that Congress and the State Department could do when they promised to get our friends out of harm's way. It's really the thought that counts."
"We were getting really tired of individually blacklisting the 'terps for misspelling transliterated place names on their background packets," said Rebecca Ryan, a Consular Official in Kabul. "By streamlining the issuance process to dead ones, we're able to put up huge numbers and really get the soldiers and Marines back home to back up off our nuts."
The Embassy in Kabul hopes to continue issuing large numbers of visas to the horrifically desecrated bodies of interpreters and their families. "Once the last coalition troops have left the country, I'm hoping we'll finish every last application within a couple of months," Ryan added enthusiastically.