NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Hundreds of Afghans, who volunteer with a local non-profit, are being hunted by the Taliban after the U.S. left Afghanistan.
Air Force Lt. General (Ret.) John Bradley founded the Lamia Afghan Foundation in Nashville with his wife. He fears for the lives of those who have worked with them.
"There’s a young girl, a young woman now, at 9-years-old who I met in Afghanistan in 2007 begging me for some boots. She’s the face and name of our foundation. Her name is all over our website, it’s all over projects we’ve done,” Bradley said, “I’m worried about our country director and his family, who did not get out."
Through the foundation, they built schools and a women's clinic run by Afghans. The people on the ground who helped with humanitarian efforts are now in danger. Bradley said the Taliban will look through their phones to see if they’ve made any calls to the United States.
Bradley said, "This just breaks my heart because we have so many friends there, they’re under threat, it’s been the focus of the work of my wife and me for 13 years."
One of his volunteers now lives in Virginia and has been trying to get her family out. They were at the airport in Kabul during the explosions. A mother died, and service members picked up her two injured little children. They’ve been recovering in Germany. "It’s horrible," Bradley said.
On Friday, those children were on the way to the U.S. to be reunited with their aunt. "The father and the older son are in hiding in Kabul, we’re trying to get them out, so that eventually, hopefully, they can be reunited with the two younger children," Bradley said.
He said they’re still trying to get nearly 500 volunteers out. The Lamia Afghan Foundation filled out forms for all of them, but none of them made the military evacuation list. "I’m very frustrated," Bradley said.
The Lamia Afghan Foundation has been working with Congressman Jim Cooper on the situation.