Aaron Fleming says Sami Kazikhani deserves to be in the U.S. after helping the Marine Corps as an Afghani interpreter. Aaron, a retired Marine, is doing what he can to help rescue Sami Kazikhani and his family.
“We went everywhere together, he was pretty much my interpreter the entire time, so as we worked together professionally we developed that type of personal brotherhood that you typically develop with the men and women that you find yourself in combat with,” Aaron told KY3.
Aaron recently retired form the Corps due to combat related injuries from an IED after a decade of service while Sami continued to serve alongside other Marines in Afghanistan. Then Sami found out the Taliban were trying to track and kill him; they’d put a price on his head.
Like most interpreters, Afghans are given a small amount of gear from the U.S. government, but they do their jobs unarmed while putting themselves and their families at risk. They carry the hope of one day making it to the United States for the opportunity to live the American dream.
Aaron credits Sami for his work in Afghanistan, “He was a major player in getting us all out of there alive, just as much as any of the Marines were.”
Sami’s visa was denied and he was not allowed to immigrate here. Because of the death threats, Sami and his wife Yasmin and their baby fled to Turkey as refugees. They’ve been swept up with the refugee crisis along with Syrian refugees.
According to the fundraising page they’ve set up, Sami’s family “fled to Turkey where they lived in squalor and where Sami worked for 18 hours a day at the equivalent pay rate of $2/day. The Turkish government could no longer support the refugee burden so he and his family were forced to flee to Greece where he is now for a short period of time.”
Aaron is trying to change to help Sami’s family get to the states; they fear his family could be deported back to Afghanistan where he could be assassinated by terrorists.
Aaron isn’t alone in the fight. He and other veterans are urging the U.S. State Department to do more. They believe they owe it to the translators who have sacrificed everything to help our troops.
“It’s a shame and a disgrace that right now he’s in a refugee status and the country that he has assisted and put himself and his family in danger for assisting is kinda leaving him hanging out to dry,” Aaron says.
They’ve set up a fundraising page for Sami’s family. They’re sending donations to Sami as needed via Western Union, but most of the funds will be used towards the very expensive immigration application process.