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US Citizens at Risk – in Ukraine

Posted on Monday, February 14, 2022
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by AMAC, Robert B. Charles
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Ukraine legal matters criminal

The Biden White House, State Department, and Military are taking a “hands-off” approach to getting US citizens out of another country which may be overrun by a foreign military – this time, Ukraine. Six months ago, it was Afghanistan. This policy – abdication of American citizen extraction – is madness.

Yes, I hear the justifications. I hear the pleas of a weak President, telling American citizens to get themselves out. I understand the rigor of logistics. I realize organizing extractions is hard. See, e.g., Ukraine tensions: Joe Biden says US citizens should leave Ukraine now.

As a former Assistant Secretary of State – whose job, incidentally, included managing State’s airwing under Colin Powell – allow me to say part of State’s mission is extraction. The state is legally obligated to get American citizens (“AMCITS”) out of precarious situations.

Three quick points here.

First, AMCIT extractions are not rare. They are common. They are coordinated – within the constraints of warning, host countries, logistical planning, and third-country participation.

“Since 1988, the Department of State has ordered over 270 evacuations from overseas posts due to civil strife, terrorist incidents, natural disasters, conventional war threats, and disease outbreaks.” Under President Trump, State managed to get 20,000 citizens home in COVID.

To achieve that outcome, State must “prepare for evacuation,” including reliance on “guidance, plans, and training, such as Emergency Action Plans.” To assure quality, reviews are done. See, State Department: Evacuation Planning and Preparations for Overseas Posts Can Be Improved.

Point two. While Defense can also be mobilized, legal authority – and the obligation – is formally on the State Department, typically not Defense.

Accordingly, often “the U.S. government will provide a transportation option to a location away from the crisis event, usually a neighboring country or a different part of the same country,” even if commercial options are pursued and advised first. See, e.g., What the Department of State Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis.

Point three. In July 2021, the Biden State Department inexplicably killed a formative bureau – the operation within State dedicated to extractions that occurred in 2020. They quietly signed a document ending its existence, pushed the responsibility to Defense.

All this is especially concerning right now. Why? Because at times when Americans need to know a whole-of-government approach is being used to protect US citizens at home and around the world, we seem to see abdication of that commitment.

Today, according to credible sources, we have between 6,600 AMCITS in Ukraine, and perhaps “tens of thousands.” Whether we have 100 or 100,000, we have an obligation to get them home, through a combination of counsel, advice, and physical extraction.

The horror of this moment is that – at a time when Americans are at risk, for the second time in six months – the Biden White House, State Department, and Defense seem to be conveying a “you are on your own” message. 

The right answer is – at a time when we are delivering defense weapons (Javelin and Stinger missiles) by the planeload to Ukraine, we should be reloading those same planes with assembled AMCITS who want out, are pressed to get out fast.

Bottom line: Given Taliban chasing Americans and allies in Afghanistan – who thought they would be extracted – we owe it to be ready this time, to get every American out of Ukraine – now. If we end up with one wounded or lost American, that is entirely on Biden. Not to get them out now, is madness.

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PaulE
PaulE
2 years ago

Well RBC, I bet you never envisioned a time when a POTUS would not only state that the United States would NOT attempt to ensure American citizens could safely be evacuated from a potential hot spot, but that if they were stuck there, for whatever reason, that the United States would just abandon them outright and write them off. Then again, I don’t think anyone ever thought Biden would be stupid enough to withdraw all military personnel from Afghanistan without first ensuring all American civilians were first safely evacuated either. Yet we left hundreds of Americans trapped in Afghanistan to either be killed by the Taliban or to be imprisoned and tortured for the rest of their lives.

This kind of “You’re on your own” attitude should make every American seriously re-think travel outside the United States, as we’re now sending a clear message to every world leader and terrorist organization that America doesn’t really care about what happens to American citizens outside its own borders. They are now fair game and America won’t respond to its citizens being attacked or killed.

Jon
Jon
2 years ago

WAKE AMERICA!!!! We can not vote out the Democrats fast enough.

Rich C
Rich C
2 years ago

We have no right to be in Ukraine because we should have taken a stand long ago, as soon as we saw Russia starting to make the move toward Ukraine.The ONLY reason Biden is putting American troops in harms way is due to his incompetence on the world stage, it has nothing to do with freedom for the Ukrainian people. Because other “allies” have sent troops to the border, he thinks this will make him look strong. If a war starts it won’t be any kind of victory for America. Don’t look for “leadership” from America to make any difference for the Ukrainian people. We couldn’t even help the people of Cuba when they wanted freedom from their oppressive government. Of course we were too busy aiding all the illegals flooding our southern border. It all boils down to which groups might give the socialists more votes. Once a vote whore, always a vote whore.

Ed Cohen
Ed Cohen
2 years ago

I believe all US citizens are at risk wherever they are. Including in our own country! The inmates are running the government.

Art
Art
2 years ago

PATHETICISM ON DISPLAY. HUNTER IS NOT IN THE UKRAINE SO YOU DON’T CONCERN YOURSELF WITH OTHERS THAT MAY BE IN HARM’S WAY.

Sharon Ormsby
Sharon Ormsby
2 years ago

Our church regularly organizes missionaries all over the world in transportation. At the first hint of threat, our missionaries were out of both Russia and Ukraine within two days. You have to understand, they are posted in towns and cities throughout the entire country-in this case-both countries. If our church can do it, so could our government. It’s merely called organization.

CoNMTX
CoNMTX
2 years ago

The sad thing is that Biden and all his communist gang members in Washington have no consciences. They are evil, satanically controlled people whose only interest is establishing the globalist government. They don’t care who dies or how many. Life, except their own, means nothing to them.

Robert
Robert
2 years ago

Americans in foreign countries have absolutely nothing to worry about. Just look at what transpired in Afghanistan. No worries, lunch bucket Joe and the rest of the commies in D.C. have your backs. Oh they also have a few knifes.

Spade David
Spade David
2 years ago

Americans, home and abroad, cannot trust the Marxist Democrat administration led by O’Biden. He would rather spend money on the green new deal than to assist Americans in harm’s way. He has no sense of priorities for citizens in foreign lands. It is almost like they have junior leaders in Defense and State Departments. They won’t take responsibility for anything, they raise the smoke screen when things go wrong, and they constantly lie to the public. The cabinet has been discredited by their actions every week of O’Biden’s dismal term, and anyway this situation in the Ukraine ends it will show lack of leadership in Washington. It is more than shameful, it is criminal. An to think we have a compliant media that will not do their jobs by accurately reporting on the failures or even investigating the horrible shortcomings of this administration.

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
2 years ago

2 rerun Afghanistan??

Lynn
Lynn
2 years ago

These disloyal incompetents (I’m being kind) should not be allowed to collect a pension or healthcare from our hard earned public taxes. I strongly believe they should be prosecuted as traitors. In cases like these stupidity is a crime. If they worked in real jobs they’d be fired. At least in the old days they would be.

Nancy Weres
Nancy Weres
2 years ago

There will still be Ukrainian Americans in Ukraine to help defend their ancestral homeland. Ukrainian Americans have a higher percentage of military veterans. Ukrainian Boy Scouts, instead of learning about gender fluidity and “toxic masculinity” like today’s BSA, learn combat skills as boys to prepare them for the military. Many of the corrupt oligarchs have fled Ukraine. Hopefully, they won’t be let back in. Putin has declared a Holy War in Syria, so I doubt he’ll immediately invade more Ukrainian territory. The US again looks foolish to the world and our enemies are strengthened under the Dems.

james michalicek
james michalicek
2 years ago

Does the Biden Crime Family still have ties to Ukraine?

jake the snake
jake the snake
2 years ago

Standard operating procedure for the biden administration. put Americans at risk and then impose bizarre political rules on them to get out.

Hey Biden have you given Putin a list of american names and addresses in Ukraine yet? better get on that. Now else is Putin goign to collect them up quickly? Putin needs to know how many train cars to send down there to haul them to Siberia.

Aren’t you liberals, progressives, democrats proud of your voter fraud president?

Leo1001
Leo1001
2 years ago

Didn’t anyone notice this statement in the article?
“Point three. In July 2021, the Biden State Department inexplicably killed a formative bureau – the operation within State dedicated to extractions that occurred in 2020. They quietly signed a document ending its existence, pushed the responsibility to Defense.”
How can a “president” change the designated responsibilities of our Department of State “quietly”? How can he sua sponte relieve himself and Blinken of the duty and responsibilites to remove Americans in danger in Ukraine with an Executive Order? Where are our watchdogs?

Smike
Smike
2 years ago

I’m sorry, but evacuation is available to any American who wants to leave, to leave today in a safe and orderly manner. It was offered to the Americans as well as Afgan who elected to stay there and then cry for help. I understand why they stay, and I admire them for that courage but that’s their decision, no one is forcing them to stay. It’s like not getting vaccinated or not wearing a mask then getting deathly ill and overflowing the medical system – it was their choice. But we’re Americans, that’s why we pay taxes. To spend Trillions of dollars on things that could have been avoided or limited. And we make the same mistakes over and over and over again…that’s called…..

Rik
Rik
2 years ago

One solution: IMPEACH THE IMPOSTER!

Frank
Frank
2 years ago

I no longer have any sympathy what-so-ever for Americans that were stupid enough to travel and stay in countries in these parts of the world. The Ukraine, Slovakia and the other countries in this part of the world have a history of suppressing their people, harboring terrorists while kidnapping women and holding them as sex slaves. They call their leaders presidents when in reality they are nothing more than dictators.

rvgrandma
rvgrandma
2 years ago

Majority of Americans knew the pullout from Afghanistan was coming. They had months to leave. The same with Ukraine. The world knew this was probably going to happen. If they were stupid enough to stay instead of leave, then it is their fault – not the American government. Only people working at the embassy have an excuse but the families could have left.

Bill T
Bill T
2 years ago

Just like the complete disaster in Afghanistan ( and it was a tactical mistake that trust me every world power couldn’t believe what they saw and right are devising a strategy to DESTROY THE USA! Why wait when the opportunity is right there for the taking? We’re literally leaving our American citizens left out to be TORTURED AND MURDERED by our worst enemies and BIDEN and his dysfunctional administration are literally clueless and actually the biggest danger our country has ever had , Yes our current president and administration I’m talking about!

Walter
Walter
2 years ago

Bring our troops and civilians home now! We have spent so many years defending everyone’s borders with tremendous loss of American lives, blood sweat and tears. Yet, currently under JB and his corrupt administration they are reluctant to defend our own border. If you think this is a mess after Afghanistan especially with the loss of so many young military troops lives and all those that were the wounded and those left behind as well, if Russia invades Ukraine, I wouldn’t put it past China to go after Taiwan at about the same time. Do you think Joe can handle a one front war let alone a two-front war? Really, so you think sanctions will work, really? I don’t believe that at all. China and Russia can smell a weak leader. Overall, we should not allow any more loss of American life or wounded under such incompetent leadership. Bring our troops and civilians home now and defend our own border, like our Constitution demands. Haven’t we given and lost enough? I think Nancy and other government felons have made enough money from insider trading; don’t you think so. Maybe they can use their ill-gotten corrupt gains to help bring our people home as well as defend the American border. Enough is enough!

PaulE
PaulE
2 years ago

Well RBC, I bet you never envisioned a time when a POTUS would not only state that the United States would NOT attempt to ensure American citizens could safely be evacuated from a potential hot spot, but that if they were stuck there, for whatever reason, that the United States would just abandon them outright and write them off. Then again, I don’t think anyone ever thought Biden would be stupid enough to withdraw all military personnel from Afghanistan without first ensuring all American civilians were first safely evacuated either. Yet we left hundreds of Americans trapped in Afghanistan to either be killed by the Taliban or to be imprisoned and tortured for the rest of their lives.

This kind of “You’re on your own” attitude should make every American seriously re-think travel outside the United States, as we’re now sending a clear message to every world leader and terrorist organization that America doesn’t really care about what happens to American citizens outside its own borders. They are now fair game and America won’t respond to its citizens being attacked or killed.

Jon
Jon
2 years ago

WAKE AMERICA!!!! We can not vote out the Democrats fast enough.

Rich C
Rich C
2 years ago

We have no right to be in Ukraine because we should have taken a stand long ago, as soon as we saw Russia starting to make the move toward Ukraine.The ONLY reason Biden is putting American troops in harms way is due to his incompetence on the world stage, it has nothing to do with freedom for the Ukrainian people. Because other “allies” have sent troops to the border, he thinks this will make him look strong. If a war starts it won’t be any kind of victory for America. Don’t look for “leadership” from America to make any difference for the Ukrainian people. We couldn’t even help the people of Cuba when they wanted freedom from their oppressive government. Of course we were too busy aiding all the illegals flooding our southern border. It all boils down to which groups might give the socialists more votes. Once a vote whore, always a vote whore.

Ed Cohen
Ed Cohen
2 years ago

I believe all US citizens are at risk wherever they are. Including in our own country! The inmates are running the government.

Art
Art
2 years ago

PATHETICISM ON DISPLAY. HUNTER IS NOT IN THE UKRAINE SO YOU DON’T CONCERN YOURSELF WITH OTHERS THAT MAY BE IN HARM’S WAY.

Sharon Ormsby
Sharon Ormsby
2 years ago

Our church regularly organizes missionaries all over the world in transportation. At the first hint of threat, our missionaries were out of both Russia and Ukraine within two days. You have to understand, they are posted in towns and cities throughout the entire country-in this case-both countries. If our church can do it, so could our government. It’s merely called organization.

CoNMTX
CoNMTX
2 years ago

The sad thing is that Biden and all his communist gang members in Washington have no consciences. They are evil, satanically controlled people whose only interest is establishing the globalist government. They don’t care who dies or how many. Life, except their own, means nothing to them.

Robert
Robert
2 years ago

Americans in foreign countries have absolutely nothing to worry about. Just look at what transpired in Afghanistan. No worries, lunch bucket Joe and the rest of the commies in D.C. have your backs. Oh they also have a few knifes.

Spade David
Spade David
2 years ago

Americans, home and abroad, cannot trust the Marxist Democrat administration led by O’Biden. He would rather spend money on the green new deal than to assist Americans in harm’s way. He has no sense of priorities for citizens in foreign lands. It is almost like they have junior leaders in Defense and State Departments. They won’t take responsibility for anything, they raise the smoke screen when things go wrong, and they constantly lie to the public. The cabinet has been discredited by their actions every week of O’Biden’s dismal term, and anyway this situation in the Ukraine ends it will show lack of leadership in Washington. It is more than shameful, it is criminal. An to think we have a compliant media that will not do their jobs by accurately reporting on the failures or even investigating the horrible shortcomings of this administration.

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
2 years ago

2 rerun Afghanistan??

Lynn
Lynn
2 years ago

These disloyal incompetents (I’m being kind) should not be allowed to collect a pension or healthcare from our hard earned public taxes. I strongly believe they should be prosecuted as traitors. In cases like these stupidity is a crime. If they worked in real jobs they’d be fired. At least in the old days they would be.

Nancy Weres
Nancy Weres
2 years ago

There will still be Ukrainian Americans in Ukraine to help defend their ancestral homeland. Ukrainian Americans have a higher percentage of military veterans. Ukrainian Boy Scouts, instead of learning about gender fluidity and “toxic masculinity” like today’s BSA, learn combat skills as boys to prepare them for the military. Many of the corrupt oligarchs have fled Ukraine. Hopefully, they won’t be let back in. Putin has declared a Holy War in Syria, so I doubt he’ll immediately invade more Ukrainian territory. The US again looks foolish to the world and our enemies are strengthened under the Dems.

james michalicek
james michalicek
2 years ago

Does the Biden Crime Family still have ties to Ukraine?

jake the snake
jake the snake
2 years ago

Standard operating procedure for the biden administration. put Americans at risk and then impose bizarre political rules on them to get out.

Hey Biden have you given Putin a list of american names and addresses in Ukraine yet? better get on that. Now else is Putin goign to collect them up quickly? Putin needs to know how many train cars to send down there to haul them to Siberia.

Aren’t you liberals, progressives, democrats proud of your voter fraud president?

Leo1001
Leo1001
2 years ago

Didn’t anyone notice this statement in the article?
“Point three. In July 2021, the Biden State Department inexplicably killed a formative bureau – the operation within State dedicated to extractions that occurred in 2020. They quietly signed a document ending its existence, pushed the responsibility to Defense.”
How can a “president” change the designated responsibilities of our Department of State “quietly”? How can he sua sponte relieve himself and Blinken of the duty and responsibilites to remove Americans in danger in Ukraine with an Executive Order? Where are our watchdogs?

Smike
Smike
2 years ago

I’m sorry, but evacuation is available to any American who wants to leave, to leave today in a safe and orderly manner. It was offered to the Americans as well as Afgan who elected to stay there and then cry for help. I understand why they stay, and I admire them for that courage but that’s their decision, no one is forcing them to stay. It’s like not getting vaccinated or not wearing a mask then getting deathly ill and overflowing the medical system – it was their choice. But we’re Americans, that’s why we pay taxes. To spend Trillions of dollars on things that could have been avoided or limited. And we make the same mistakes over and over and over again…that’s called…..

Rik
Rik
2 years ago

One solution: IMPEACH THE IMPOSTER!

Frank
Frank
2 years ago

I no longer have any sympathy what-so-ever for Americans that were stupid enough to travel and stay in countries in these parts of the world. The Ukraine, Slovakia and the other countries in this part of the world have a history of suppressing their people, harboring terrorists while kidnapping women and holding them as sex slaves. They call their leaders presidents when in reality they are nothing more than dictators.

rvgrandma
rvgrandma
2 years ago

Majority of Americans knew the pullout from Afghanistan was coming. They had months to leave. The same with Ukraine. The world knew this was probably going to happen. If they were stupid enough to stay instead of leave, then it is their fault – not the American government. Only people working at the embassy have an excuse but the families could have left.

Bill T
Bill T
2 years ago

Just like the complete disaster in Afghanistan ( and it was a tactical mistake that trust me every world power couldn’t believe what they saw and right are devising a strategy to DESTROY THE USA! Why wait when the opportunity is right there for the taking? We’re literally leaving our American citizens left out to be TORTURED AND MURDERED by our worst enemies and BIDEN and his dysfunctional administration are literally clueless and actually the biggest danger our country has ever had , Yes our current president and administration I’m talking about!

Walter
Walter
2 years ago

Bring our troops and civilians home now! We have spent so many years defending everyone’s borders with tremendous loss of American lives, blood sweat and tears. Yet, currently under JB and his corrupt administration they are reluctant to defend our own border. If you think this is a mess after Afghanistan especially with the loss of so many young military troops lives and all those that were the wounded and those left behind as well, if Russia invades Ukraine, I wouldn’t put it past China to go after Taiwan at about the same time. Do you think Joe can handle a one front war let alone a two-front war? Really, so you think sanctions will work, really? I don’t believe that at all. China and Russia can smell a weak leader. Overall, we should not allow any more loss of American life or wounded under such incompetent leadership. Bring our troops and civilians home now and defend our own border, like our Constitution demands. Haven’t we given and lost enough? I think Nancy and other government felons have made enough money from insider trading; don’t you think so. Maybe they can use their ill-gotten corrupt gains to help bring our people home as well as defend the American border. Enough is enough!

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