National Security

President Trump Intervenes After Visas Denied for Afghan Girls

The mainstream media won’t tell you this story…

A team of six Afghan girls briefly had their dream of competing in an international robotics contest in Washington DC held up when they were twice denied visas to enter the United States. The team reportedly had to travel 500 miles to the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan to even apply for the visas before they were denied.

They were prepared to appear via Skype for the robotics competition since their robot was allowed entry when President Donald Trump stepped in and urged the National Security Council to see what they could do. The girls were then granted entry to the United States under the “parole” system, which will allow the team to remain in the United States for 10 days without visas.

Parole is reserved for exceptional circumstances, which the Department of Homeland Security agreed applies to the Afghan girls participating in the robotics contest. There are significant public benefits to allowing the team to enter the United States.

Girls in Afghanistan are subjected to real life oppression, especially in the area of education. It’s widely known that girls in Afghanistan aren’t necessarily a priority when it comes to education and have flat out been prohibited from attending school. They have been abused and subjected to horrific conditions under previous Taliban rule. Many girls and women in areas such as Afghanistan remain under Sharia rule and don’t really have many options for themselves.

First Daughter Ivanka Trump took to Twitter to show support for the team, posting, “I look forward to welcoming this brilliant team of Afghan girls, and their competitors, to Washington DC next week!”

Ms. Trump has been an outspoken advocate of women’s rights and the empowerment of women and girls. She’s spoken out about issues such as human trafficking and paid family leave. Showing support to the girls from Afghanistan profoundly effects how other girls within their country will possibly be inspired to follow in the footsteps of these young scientists.

The very definition of empowering women and girls on a global scale is welcoming those who have worked hard against odds and circumstance towards something greater than expected. And these girls really did work hard against odds and circumstances. In fact, this particular team had to improvise during the course of their robotics construction by using items they found around the house after the parts they ordered were held up in customs.

As the United States Armed Forces continues conducting operations in Afghanistan, working together alongside the Afghan people remains crucial to the success of those on the ground in country. President Trump has sent a positive message of unity and acceptance by intervening on behalf of these obviously intelligent girls.

With all of the negative stories in the media and assertions that President Trump is working to ensure that Muslims won’t be welcomed in the United States, welcoming these young scientists as guests speaks volumes of the humanity that still exists in the midst of all the political strife in America. There isn’t much more to say other than good form, Mr. President.

Angelina Newsom

Angelina Newsom is an OpsLens Contributor and U.S. Army Veteran. She has ten years experience in the military, including a deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. She studies Criminal Justice and is still active within the military community.

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