Since my first novel, Press Card, was published, the most common question I hear is this: Are you Claude Shelby, the protagonist in the novel set at a tabloid newspaper?
The answer is no, I am not Claude Shelby, and he is not me.
However, there are some traits we share, in addition to many we don’t.
One trait we share is that we hate to be lied to, most especially by people in “authority,” whether editors or politicians.
Some politicians lie some of the time, others lie most of the time.
I am going to write about some unbelievable things going on at our Southern border, and how the wrong people are being punished, but I will start a long way away — in Afghanistan.
This is the first of two parts.
You remember the picture of the C-17 cargo plane taking off from Kabul, with people clinging to its sides and wheel housing? You may remember that two men tragically fell to their deaths as the plane climbed for altitude. The decision to take off is under Air Force investigation, and the flight crew could face charges.
Think about that.
Thousands of Afghans had flooded the airport’s single runway, as the American military scrambled to rescue tens of thousands of people from harm’s way. U.S. troops on the ground were greatly outnumbered by Afghan civilians.
On Aug. 16, the plane carrying Air Force Col. Colin McCloskey, who had been dispatched to the scene to organize what everyone describes as a chaotic situation, circled for hours, unable to land because of civilians on the runway, it was reported.
Had the departing C-17 flight crew aborted the flight, the people onboard would have been put in jeopardy. The airport might have been closed. No one might have gotten out. Bad things snowball when order falls victim to mob mentality.
Placed in an impossible situation, the flight crew put the safety of their passengers first, as it should have.
Crowd control had broken down at the airport and the result was chaos, which is the usual result when you mix panic and too few people in uniform. Looking at you, fans of Defund the Police.
As a result, the airlift continued, even as it degenerated into a hustle that rescued unknown Afghans, while those who actually had served U.S. interests often couldn’t get to the airport.
Another Air Force flight crew made a momentous decision when it allowed 800 civilians to cram into a hold designed to hold 100 armed troops. That violated “good practices.”
Under current Crazy Rules, I expect an inquiry into that flight crew’s actions.
It did the right thing, under the circumstances.
Another investigation is going on now, and buffoonish President Joe Biden said the Border Patrol “will pay” for their actions in defending the U.S. border.
I will discuss that travesty next time.