Does anyone remember this guy? He’s the surgeon from Pakistan that worked for the U.S. Government. Dr. Afridi gave out vaccines as cover to collect DNA samples to identify the location of Osama bin Laden.
After the successful raid, and the death of bin Laden, the American Government released all the details about the activities leading up to the attack. The story about the work Dr. Afridi did was released without extracting the good doctor or his family from Pakistan. I guess it was more important to show how brilliant the President is than to protect this Pakistani asset.
Dr. Afridi was arrested and charged with treason after his story was released by the Obama Administration. He was sentenced to 33 years in prison and fined 320,000 rupees ($3,500 American). Pakistan was not pleased that American troops entered Pakistan and carried out the raid without first asking permission from the Pakistani government. They have made an example of Shakeel Afridi. The fact that Pakistan hid and protected bin Laden from America has been lost. Pakistan was embarrassed that Osama bin Laden was found living just a few miles from a military base. They immediately let the world know they did not have knowledge of, or approve the raid that killed bin Laden.
The Obama Administration has done nothing to free Dr. Afridi from prison. Barak Obama and his Administration were too busy chest thumping and showing everyone how tough they were, that they failed to protect the actions Dr. Afridi took to identify bin Laden for the U.S.
Afridi’s lawyers appealed the harsh sentence in the Pakistani courts. The judge ruled that the sentence is reduced by 10 years to 23 years. The time served counts toward the sentence. This means he can expect to be released in May of 2035. His fine was also reduced to $1,000 American. This is to show the world they have compassion. The plan still is for Shakeel Afridi to die in prison before his release.
There are many actions America could take to secure Dr. Afridi’s release. There are ways the Pakistani government could release him and his family without publicity. John Kerry, the Secretary of State, who travels that part of the world regularly, could negotiate for a quiet release and relocation to the United States. Instead they have chosen to allow Afridi to sit in a Pakistani jail.
It seems as though Obama is punishing Dr. Afridi for working with us. Obama is acting as though this guy is our enemy. You would think Obama would feel some sort of loyalty to the doctor. Is Obama seeing to it that this guy is punished for disloyalty to Muslims? What is the message Obama is sending to other foreigners who might be able to help us around the world?
Afridi’s family members report the good doctor is not in good health. The Pakistani government has no sympathy for spies against their country. They could care less if Afridi dies in prison. He is an example to warn others what cooperating with America could mean for them.
Abandoning Dr. Afridi has done irreparable damage to our intelligence agencies. How can we ever get people living in these foreign countries to help us in the future when we don’t protect those who have helped us in the past?