Season 2
Episode 5
The
problem
with
Allies: Friends Without Benefits 

When America needs help from allies, it makes promises. When those allies ask for help, it breaks those promises.

When America goes to war, we rely on locals to act as interpreters and for other critical help. During the war in Afghanistan we made big promises in return for the services of Afghan interpreters, including a path to U.S. citizenship, but once our military went home we left many of these local allies behind. In this episode, we investigate why we’ve made it so hard for the interpreters who served alongside our military in Afghanistan to get the Special Immigrant Visas we promised them. On our panel, we meet those who’ve been left to fend for themselves against Taliban retribution and a veteran who scrambled to help his translator when the U.S. wouldn’t. We also talked to Sen. Dick Durbin, Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, about how we can fix the process for getting our Afghan allies to safety and on a path to American citizenship.