BALTIMORE — For the first time in 20 years, Afghanistan citizens woke up without the presence of a U.S. military.
A native of the country here in Baltimore shares how worried he is for his family back home.
“I was born in Kandahar, Afghanistan," Muhammad Maiwand said with pride.
Afghanistan was his home up until he was about 8 years old when he moved to the U.S.
He says it’s been a struggle for the last couple of weeks watching chaos back home dominate the headlines.
Monday the U.S. completed it's military evacuation hours before deadline leaving the Afghanistan’s fate in it’s own hands.
All Maiwand can think about is the safety of those U.S. allies who remain in the country today.
“I think it left the people upset most definitely. We’ve seen all of the devastation on the television. I think there should’ve been a plan to pull out," he said.
He says the U.S. actions appeared to be random with no method to protect those who assisted the US in Afghanistan over the last two decades.
He says one of those left behind is one of his close relatives, a former security guard for the U.S embassy who now has no escape from the country.
“He’s fearing for his life including his kids and his wife and the immediate family. So I’ve been trying to do everything I could to help and so far I haven’t heard anything," said Maiwand.
He spends plenty of his time talking with relatives like the former security guard; yet, each phone ring is accompanied by a a rush of worry and anxiety.
“Your heart stops for a minute that you hope that it’s not bad news," he explained.
He says he hopes no one from his family falls victim to brutality or retaliation.
“We just simply don’t know what’s going to happen and we’re quite worried about that," he shared,
He says while the Taliban has promised to grant amnesty to U.S. allies, he’s still skeptical, hopeful his loved ones can prevent persecution from the Taliban.
“We’re left in limbo, don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow as a matter of fact an hour from now or two because nobody knows what the situation will be in the next few hours," said Maiwand.
As we approach the anniversary of 9-11, Maiwand says he’s less fearful of any symbolic attacks here and the U.S and more concerned with potential political statements made by Afghanistan’s new rulers.
He says he worries danger looms and his only hope is that those who helped the U.S. will get some help in return before it’s too late.
“I hope that we come up with someway to evacuate whoever is left behind that needs to be evacuated," Maiwand shared.