‘Chaotic…Dangerous’: CNN Reporter, with Shots Fired Behind Her, Disputes WH Assessment at Kabul Airport
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CNN correspondent Clarissa Ward stood outside Kabul airport as shots were fired. She described the scene Wednesday as “mayhem” and “nuts,” a departure from the White House saying the airport is secure and evacuations are on schedule.
Although the Biden administration has been giving different accounts on the growing crisis in the Taliban-controlled country, it appears to be closer to what the State Department spokesman said Tuesday, telling reporters the U.S. cannot guarantee the safety of Americans traveling to Kabul airport with no official plans to rescue Americans outside of Kabul.
“It’s definitely chaotic,” Ward told CNN’s Brianne Keilar. “It’s definitely dangerous…the gunfire is pretty much constant.”
“Two Taliban fighters just came up with their pistols, and they were ready to pistol-whip [our producer]. We had to intervene and scream,” she said, as gunshots can be heard behind her, adding that another Taliban fighter intervened and told him they were members of the press.
“I’ve covered all sorts of crazy situations. This was mayhem. This was nuts. This was impossible for any ordinary civilian, even if they had their paperwork,” Ward explained. “There’s no coherent system for processing people.”
She said it’s a “miracle” more people haven’t been seriously hurt.
“This is important to see,” another CNN commenter said, shocked, following Ward’s report, “because what we are seeing now is the disconnect between what the United States says is happening and needs to happen, with what can happen.”
Ward responded: “That’s what’s so crazy.” She explained so many people have papers but the Taliban won’t let them into the airport.