NS. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – A 24-year-old nursing student on St. Simons Island, who was born and raised in Afghanistan and worked there as an interpreter for the US military, is desperately trying to get her parents out of the country. They were left behind when the last five U.S. military planes left on Monday.

Fahima Rastagar’s parents were at Kabul airport during the fatal explosion last Thursday. Her mother was injured, fell and injured her knee in the chaos that left 13 US soldiers and more than 160 Afghans dead.

“You are out of the house,” said Rastagar. “There is no peace. They are scared and my mother keeps repeating it – every time I speak to her, she fearfully repeats that the Taliban are going from house to house looking for people. “


While her parents hide from the Taliban, Rastagar tells her mother to just hold on.

News4Jax contacted the White House about her parents’ situation. It was said that the task force team was escalating. The Georgia Sen. Jon Ossoff office said the State Department is aware of the situation.

When the US military pulled out of Afghanistan on Monday, 200 Americans and thousands of desperate Afghans were left behind, including Rastagar’s family.

On this Aug. 30, 2021 photo provided by the U.S. Air Force, an Air Force flight crew assigned to the 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron prepares to take soldiers from the 82 Globemaster III aircraft in support of the final fail – Combatants conduct evacuation operations at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Senior Airman Taylor Crul / US Air Force via AP)

“I think we had hope of getting them out of Afghanistan, but that didn’t happen and it was just very traumatic,” said Rastagar. “I mean they are being left to be butchered, what else can I say.”

To know that there is not much time left. Rastagar’s parents said they move to a different location every night as the Taliban are recruiting Afghans from mosques.


“The Taliban ask 10 people from each mosque to fight with them against the Panjshiri people, the people who live in a certain area and who defeated the Taliban,” said Rastagar.

Her mother was a saleswoman at bazaars held at US military bases from 2010 to 2014.

“It was just devastating,” she said. “I just feel hopeless, helpless.”

She is now considering taking a year off from nursing school due to the trauma this caused, while pleading with leaders to help her parents escape Kabul.

“Right now I’m working on a humanitarian probation process and that’s another avenue besides the regular Special Immigrant Visa (SIV). I think this shows that these people are currently at risk and can be targeted, ”said Madiha Zahir, a law graduate.

Zahir is helping Afghan refugees relocate to Jacksonville through the Lutheran Social Service in northeast Florida. Zahir has also partnered with Berkeley Law and its Afghanistan project to help families like Rastagar’s.


“Afghanistan has not been given up and we are still actively working to get people out or to support what is happening there,” said Zahir. “This August 31 deadline was actually only intended for the military evacuation, because I’ll tell you that so many people are still working to get them out.”

Zahir said it could be a lengthy process that includes getting passports, forms to submit, and finding a U.S. sponsor. She said it was so surprising that many non-Afghan Americans became sponsors of people they have never met.

“If that doesn’t restore your belief in humanity, then I don’t know what will,” she said.

People with families in Afghanistan who want to apply can send a message to berkeleylawafghanistanproject@gmail.com or afghanresources2021@gmail.com.

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