A knot of former Afghan officials and militias in the rugged Panjshir Valley deserve U.S. support against the Taliban, according to a pair of Republican lawmakers.
“We need to preserve this local ally,” Rep. Mike Waltz, a Florida Republican, told the Washington Examiner. “And the Panjshir, perhaps, geographically, is the most fortified place in the world … That’s why the entire Soviet army, and the Taliban at their height, were never able to take it.”
Those historical precedents raise the hope for Waltz that a rebel commander and the last elected vice president of Afghanistan, Amrullah Saleh, can mount a long-term resistance to the Taliban. That effort could preserve “a sanctuary” for the relatives of U.S. citizens and other Afghan nationals who can’t evacuate.
“They are establishing — have established a sanctuary, and right now, they need humanitarian support, particularly as we head into the fall and the Afghan winter,” Waltz said. “But they’re looking to establish