Prince was the founder of Blackwater, a military contracting company that earned billions from the United States’ wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now, with the war in Afghanistan ending in an American defeat, it appears that Prince has found a way to capitalize on that, too.
Tens of thousands of Afghans, Americans and foreign nationals are currently evacuating the country as the authoritarian Taliban regime returns to power. President Biden He has pledged to meet the August 31 deadline to withdraw nearly all US forces, and despite pressure from other G7 leaders to allow more time for evacuations, the president shows no signs of budging.
“I am determined to ensure that our mission is completed,” Biden said on Tuesday.
In the past 24 hours, the United States and other countries transferred 19,200 people from the international airport in Kabul, bringing the total number of evacuees so far to 82,300.
But many others, including thousands of US citizens and tens of thousands of Afghans eligible for special visas, remain in the country.
Mr. Prince offered a way out for a privileged few of these people – at a heavy price. according to The Wall Street Journal, the financier advertised his flights for $6,500 a head, plus additional costs if the passenger needed help escaping their home and getting to the airport safely.
Other journalists and observers condemned the effort.
“After making millions of dollars from the Afghanistan war, Eric Prince is back in there, taking advantage of people’s desperation for money,” chirp The New York Times editor Maria Abi-Habib.
“Eric Prince sees a crisis for his American peers and allies, and the billionaire uses it to charge $6,500 a person for a plane seat,” activist Amy Siskind. books. “What a man!”
independent I reached out to Mr. Prince via his current company for comment, but has yet to receive a response.