A photo of a US Air Force cargo plane that was intended to evacuate US embassy personnel but was instead quickly filled with desperate Afghans who scrambled onto the plane has gone viral.
“Hundreds of panicked Afghans who had been cleared to evacuate pulled themselves onto the C-17’s half-open ramp,” a US defense official said.
Reluctant to force them off, “the crew made the decision to go,” the official said. “Approximately 640 Afghan civilians disembarked the aircraft when it arrived at its destination.” The plane landed at the Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar.
It is the largest number of passengers ever carried by the C-17 Globemaster III in its 30 years of operation, and according to Defense One, other planes that left Kabul on Sunday may have held even more passengers.
"That’s believed to be among the most people ever flown in the C-17….Instead of trying to force those refugees off the aircraft, “the crew made the decision to go,” a defense official told Defense One." https://t.co/NMqqOSqDdv
— Vera Bergengruen (@VeraMBergen) August 16, 2021
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)