DELAWARE COUNTY, Pa. - As the chaos continues in Afghanistan, a local marine veteran is working to rescue his interpreter, who is stuck in Kabul. The veteran stated rescuing his interpreter and the interpreter’s family could be the difference between life and death.
"It’s been very hard to sleep for the past 48 hours, let alone the last week. My wife can tell you," Marine Lance Corporal Peter Cuoco says he is doing whatever he possibly can to get his former interpreter, Carl, away from imminent danger, amid the massive upheaval.
"He’s actively being tracked by the Taliban right now. And, his family," Cuoco lamented. "I talked to him around 10 this morning and he said he left where he was after the Taliban went to his house. They went to his house and knocked on his door. They have pictures of him. They know who he is."
He had been trying to get his former interpreter into the United States for years since they worked together on the ground.
"He applied twice for a Special Immigrant Visa. They said they denied him because he didn’t display that he was in immediate danger. They have the audacity to deny him and I feel he’s done more for this country than me and I got a Purple Heart," Cuoco explained.
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And, he says it was Carl who saved his life during an IED attack.
"With direct machine gun fire coming towards us, he ran out and was trying to pull me out of the vehicle as the Taliban were stomping on me in my own blood and I couldn’t move. I was very…it turned out my back was broken," Cuoco described the incident.
"I would do anything, say anything. I even asked my wife if I could go over there and try to rescue just his daughter, cause if they find him, they’re going to torture him and sell his family as sex slaves," Cpl. Cuoco stated.
Meantime he finds the images of choppers airlifting American diplomats to safety troubling given Carl’s situation. It’s only making Cuoco work harder.
"To just leave the country abruptly with no pull out plan and to leave so many nationals that helped us…it’s baffling," Cuoco added.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to aid in helping evacuate the interpreter and his family out of Afghanistan for anyone wishing to help.