He’d moved up in the world significantly; he was a power-player in Kandahar province. “I think he found that less auspicious, although I’m pretty sure he was pretty great at selling paint. What if I get killed one day, then who is going to take care of my loved ones?That dude could sell anything.” Two of Watson’s other personal translators now live in Toronto, one of them a machinist, the other in the import/export business. “All three of those guys, I would do anything for.” Kazimi said he wants to come to Canada for his family’s sake. “More importantly, I want to gain my right to live as a Canadian citizen in Canada and work there like my other friends who are currently living there.
“He’s a wheeler and a dealer; he had all kinds of things going on,” said Watson.
“By my second or third tour, Ahmed had become director of the civilian side of Kandahar airfield.
“To escape persecution by insurgents, many of these linguists have been forced into hiding in their home country or escaped only to be stranded in Europe,” she wrote.
She pointed to Canada’s current policy directing those left behind to go through existing immigration channels, saying the process “represents an extreme hardship for them due to the perils of openly traveling in Afghanistan; the difficulties of applying while homeless or in a refugee camp in Europe; the challenge of the application process itself, including proof of persecution, which is often impossible to procure; an acute lack of resources; and myriad other obstacles.” Other coalition countries, Britain and the United States among them, have re-evaluated and revised their resettlement policies, granting asylum to linguists who missed the first wave.
“Otherwise we kill your son because he is co-operating with the Infidels!
” “You AHMAD SAJAD, son of Mohammad Wali, resident of Helmand province,” began another, “we found out that you are working as a linguist with Foreigners in KANDAHAR province. “We are looking [for] you in all other provinces of Afghanistan.” It was signed Mawlawi Shir Agha Akhond, (Taliban) governor of Sangin district, Helmand, Afghanistan. Kazimi, better known to the troops he worked with by his nickname Alex, knows of several coalition interpreters killed from the time he started translating in June 2009. “The Taliban and ISIS are worse than wild animals,” he said in an interview with from Afghanistan, where he was hiding with his pregnant wife while trying to gain entry into Canada.The night letters started arriving at his parents’ home in Afghanistan’s Helmand province soon after Ahmad Sajad Kazimi took a job translating for Canadian and other NATO forces fighting the war on terror.“Tell your son to quit his job and stop working for coalition forces,” one said.“They don’t finish an interpreter’s life with just a single bullet. They only use bullets when they come after their targets into the restricted areas like cities with high security.” One translator was beheaded, his severed head left on his chest on the Kandahar-Kabul highway. A picture of him lying in peaceful repose with a single bullet hole beneath his chin appears on a Facebook page.“If he has given his life on way of allah, he would have been rewarded with janah (heaven),” wrote one commenter called Muslim Pardes, “but unfortunatly he give his life for bush and obama, who are here to kill some afghans muslims. may allah bless him with hell and give his family and relatives the hardest life on both worlds.” Canada’s former Conservative government provided refuge to interpreters facing proven threats due to the work they did for Canada in Afghanistan.Another cousin worked for British forces and moved to Manchester, where he lives with his wife thanks to a special U. “This kid Alex was a cut above the rest,” Watson said. Except for one sponsored by former cabinet minister John Mc Callum in 2016, no Afghan interpreter has entered Canada since the program was shut down.Red T, a New York-based organization representing linguists worldwide, has gone to bat for coalition translators left behind in Afghanistan.Group president Maya Hess wrote Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen in June requesting a meeting.It was the second time in two years she’s appealed to the Canadian government, without satisfaction.Both escaped with their lives, although one was later shot in the right hand after he was seen in a local market.Ahmed, who had survived an IED blast, acquired a U. green card in 2006 and moved his family to Brooklyn, continuing to work for coalition forces in Kandahar.