In his online column for the New Yorker, George Packer called the unnecessary delays in SIV processing a “tragedy” the Obama administration has the ability to prevent.
“President Obama has the good fortune of still being able to save some lives,” Packer writes. “But not for long.”
Citing the New York Times article in which IRAP is featured, Packer argues that when American troops pull out of Iraq for good, they will be leaving those who assisted them to their deaths, unless the SIV process is ramped up.
Packer accuses the government of using security concerns as a scapegoat for the true reason they are failing to process SIVs.
He writes, “This issue helps nobody but the Iraqis concerned, gets no one elected, is the lowest possible priority for most harried and worried bureaucrats, and could be detrimental to someone’s career if things happen to go wrong.”
And yet, Packer stresses, it deserves President Obama’s attention.
“In my experience on this issue, the only thing that makes a difference is leadership,” Packer writes, “and if it comes from the top, then all the better.”