Sen. Cruz: U.S. 'Must Not and Will Not Leave Our Citizens Behind Taliban Lines'

Michael W. Chapman | August 19, 2021 | 1:58pm EDT
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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)   (Getty Images)
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) (Getty Images)

(CNS News) -- After the Biden administration declared on Wednesday that it does not have the capability to rescue "large numbers" of Americans and U.S.-friendly Afghans who are now trapped in Taliban-controlled territory, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said "this is entirely unacceptable," and charged President Biden and Vice President Harris to put forces in place to rescue all American citizens in Afghanistan.

"Enough is enough," said Cruz in an Aug. 19 statement.  "First, President Biden and his officials told the American people the Taliban would not advance across Afghanistan. Then, they said despite the Taliban advancing, the United States was conducting a strategic, deliberate, and planned departure, but not a full evacuation. Then, they said the United States is trying to evacuate all Americans.

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

"Now, President Biden and Vice President Harris' administration officials say they can't bring Americans into Kabul or guarantee safe passage to the airport in Kabul," said Cruz.

"This is entirely unacceptable," he added. "Thousands of Americans in Afghanistan are in acute danger and trapped behind Taliban lines."

"If President Biden, Vice President Harris, and administration officials don't believe they can secure our citizens with what we have in Afghanistan, they must bring in such capabilities," said the senator.  

Gen. Lloyd Austin, U.S. Secretary of Defense.  (Getty Images)
Gen. Lloyd Austin, U.S. Secretary of Defense. (Getty Images)

"The United States must not and will not leave our citizens behind Taliban lines," he concluded.

At a Wednesday press conference, Defense Secretary Gen. Lloyd Austin said, “I would draw a distinction between extracting someone in extremis condition or circumstance versus going out and collecting up large numbers of American citizens.”

“We don't have the capability to go out and collect up large numbers of people," he said. 

"As many as 15,000 Americans remain in Afghanistan after the Taliban's takeover of the country, Biden administration officials told Senate staffers on Tuesday," according to NBC News

  (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
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