A Top Journalist’s Oral History Of The War In Afghanistan

A Top Journalist’s Oral History Of The War In Afghanistan

On this episode of The Federalist Radio Hour, Lynne O’Donnell, author and former bureau chief in Kabul for the Associated Press and AFP, joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to give an oral history of the war in Afghanistan.

“Everybody knew that the Taliban had lists of people and that they weren’t coming in, the same as they had been in 1996 to 2001 when they were in power, they were coming in with a vengeance and they meant to take revenge,” O’Donnell explained. “And this revenge had been rolled out over previous months with targeted assassinations of journalists, women who advocated for women’s rights, people who worked as human rights advocates, women who worked as judges and lawyers or at all. They were targeted for murder by the Taliban and so everybody was very well aware and very afraid that once they came in with power that they will be able to do this with impunity, and that’s pretty much what happened and what is still happening.”

O’Donnell said the fall of Afghanistan was “horrific” and that many people were left behind at the mercy of the Taliban, who strongly object to modernization.

“I’m still bombarded every day with messages from people trying to get out, desperate to get out. But those two weeks immediately after August 15 were just horrific,” O’Donnell said.

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