With no resources, authority or land, the Afghan ambassador continues

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It was a particularly spicy feeling given the failure of the Afghan armed forces to ultimately avert the collapse of their country, and given the thousands of Afghans who have struggled immensely to fulfill their promises of passage to the United States after aiding coalition forces. over the years.

Gone were the Afghan musicians who had previously animated so many embassy dinners, not so much because of budgetary constraints as because of those of her emotional reserves.

“I can’t do that,” she said, recalling a fundraising drive not long after the fall of the Afghan government in August when a traditional band played the national anthem. “It was way too emotional,” Ms Raz said. “I cried so hard I had to go upstairs to my office to calm down.”

Ms. Raz was 16 years old when US troops invaded Afghanistan after the September 11 attacks. Their arrival heralded a new future for her and other Afghan women and girls, and she quickly enrolled in high school. She later attended both Simmons College (now called Simmons University) and Fletcher School at Tufts University in the United States with a scholarship.

In 2013, she returned to Afghanistan to serve in senior government positions. In 2018, she became Afghanistan’s first female ambassador to the United Nations, and in July she was appointed ambassador to the United States and moved here with her two daughters, 4 and 2. “I was just settling in,” she said, “Then the roller coaster started with everything.”

Afghanistan’s collapse began on August 6 with the fall of a western provincial capital to the Taliban forces. By August 15, the group’s fighters had taken Kabul when Americans began a chaotic and sometimes deadly evacuation of tens of thousands of people.

Ms. Raz spent her brief official term in office urging the Biden administration to step up its efforts to help women left behind. Her future is unclear – will she somehow remain an ambassador, or, more likely, find a way to change her immigration status to work here?

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