SALT LAKE CITY — A US military veteran who served in Afghanistan has a new mission now: help his friend and interpreter who is now in the United States free his brother and family stuck in Kabul before the Taliban find them.
Frogh, the brother, keeps getting turned away from the Kabul airport because US military there says he lacks a US passport.
Fardeen, the interpreter, joined the US Army in Afghanistan. He worries that if the Taliban find Frogh and his family, they will kill them on the spot.
Frogh said the Taliban are actively hunting for him.
The veteran, Braden, no last name given for security reasons, said when he met the interpreter, he had already served with the US military in Afghanistan. Braden described Fardeen as invaluable for defusing dangerous situations in the country facing his unit.
‘Extremely frustrating’: Veteran on plight of interpreter, Afghanistan family
Braden joined KSL NewsRadio’s Dave & Dujanovic to share his story. Watch the interview here.
“If our unit needed anything at all, Fardeen would be right there with us. Fardeen was a main, main reason why all of our people came home alive,” Braden said.
Braden said Fardeen is like a brother and welcome in his home anytime.
“We call each other when we’re having bad days. His family is very important to me because I know they’re a good family. They’re good people,” he said.
Braden said he finds it “extremely frustrating” that veterans — and not the US State Department — feel tasked with rescuing their interpreters and families in Afghanistan. Braden even asked if there are available aircraft at Hill Air Force Base that could “do a couple of runs” to transport Afghan allies out of country.
“If my passport wasn’t expired, I would have been over there in a heartbeat,” he said.
Braden told listeners to be on the lookout for donation drives benefiting Afghan refugees over the next few weekends. He said he is coordinating with other veterans to gather supplies and assemble care packages.
“They can’t bring their microwaves, their suitcases. They’re leaving with what they have on their back,” he said.
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