There are thousands of cases of Iraqis and Afghans who risked their lives for the U.S., only to have their chance at an American visa endlessly delayed or denied. Shinwari’s story struck me as particularly unjust, because of his extraordinary record of service, and because he had actually received his visa a few weeks ago, only to have it revoked on Saturday, just after he had quit his job, sold all his possessions, and was preparing his family to start a new life in Virginia.
It’s a maddening feature of these cases that life-changing determinations are made by unknown officials operating under the cloak of the empty but omnipotent phrase “national security.” No one is even sure which agency of the U.S. government has made the decision. Afghans (and Iraqis) are left to face death threats and despair in their own country without a clue as to the reason they’ve been left behind. It’s a little like being arrested and imprisoned without knowing the charge or ever appearing before a judge.
Recent Dish on visas for Iraqi and Afghan allies here.