CNN’s Chief International Correspondent Clarissa Ward is on the ground covering the chaos happening in Afghanistan’s capital city, Kabul. Stark changes are happening all around Afghanistan, but Kabul is the worst.
Shots ring out behind @clarissaward – as she stands less than 200 yards from the entrance of the Kabul airport.
"It's definitely chaotic, she says. "It's definitely dangerous." pic.twitter.com/3iNgULO0fO
— Brianna Keilar (@brikeilarcnn) August 18, 2021
She has received criticism in her coverage of the Taliban. Some conservatives were concerned that she made light of the terrorist group that led a successful insurrection against its government – one that American taxpayers have been propping up for years. Clarissa Ward told CNN viewers: “They’re just chanting, ‘Death to America,’ but they seem friendly at the same time. It’s utterly bizarre.”
Sen. Ted Cruz from Texas tweeted, “Is there an enemy of America for whom @CNN WON’T cheerlead? (In mandatory burkas, no less.)”
Is there an enemy of America for whom @CNN WON’T cheerlead?
(In mandatory burkas, no less.) https://t.co/9O6pe8yROM
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 16, 2021
Ward received overwhelming support from viewers saying critics took her words out of context. Clarissa Ward is one of the last reporters from the American media still conducting live reporting from the ground in Kabul.
Popular Conservative commentator Drew Holden came to Clarissa Ward’s defense, saying, “We know substantially more about what is taking place on the ground in Afghanistan than we would otherwise because Clarissa Ward is willing to risk her life to tell the story.”
Say what you will about her network or the way she’s covered other stories. What she’s doing now in Afghanistan takes real balls.
— Drew Holden (@DrewHolden360) August 18, 2021
He continued, “Say what you will about her network or the way she’s covered other stories. What she’s doing now in Afghanistan takes real balls.”
On CNN, she reported live while gunfire from the Taliban was heard in the background. Clarissa told Brianna Keilar that the gunfire was the Taliban’s attempt to control the crowd trying to migrate out of Afghanistan.
“There was a consistent string of gunfire” by the Taliban, Clarissa reported later on. She told CNN that her crew “was accosted by people” trying to get into the airport begging for help to get into America.
But the scariest moment she said came when two Taliban fighters came in to assault her cameraman for taking video of the scene at the airport. She said the men took their pistol out to hit him when a separate terrorist came up and explained they were journalists.
Clarissa also says her producer Brent Swailes was almost pistol-wipped by Taliban fighters as he tried to take video of the scene.
— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) August 18, 2021
She reported that Kabul airport was “mayhem.” “I’ve covered all sorts of crazy situations. This was mayhem. This was nuts. This was impossible for an ordinary civilian, even if they had their paperwork.”
Clarissa said that the “system for processing people” wasn’t “coherent.” Joe Biden won’t promise to bring home all 10,000 Americans currently abandoned in Kabul, and these Afghanis don’t seem optimistic that he will be expending extra effort for them.
Clarissa said the situation outside Kabul airport is “definitely chaotic” and “definitely dangerous.”
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