Daily Video

August 24, 2021

Daily News Lesson: Afghan refugees face massive bureaucratic hurdles coming to U.S.


Directions: Read the summary, watch the video and answer the discussion questions. To read the transcript of the video, click here. For A Historic Timeline of Afghanistan, click here.

Summary: For those Afghans who braved the Taliban’s violence and desperate crowds to get to the Kabul airport, their challenges do not end when they arrive. The process for getting Afghans to the United States is full of logistical and bureaucratic challenges. Lisa Desjardins has been talking to lawmakers, NGO workers, refugees and others about those shortcomings and joins Judy Woodruff to discuss.

Discussion questions: 

Warm up questions: Have your students identify the 5Ws and an H:

    • Who is struggling to get visas for Afghan refugees, according to this piece?
    • What are some of the bureaucratic obstacles refugees and those trying to help them are entrfacing?
    • When did the pace of transportation out of Afghanistan for refugees increase?
    • Where are some of the countries besides the U.S. that refugees are being relocated?
    • Why is the process of obtaining a visa so difficult for many refugees?
    • How has the U.S. tried to speed up the process?

Focus questions:

  • Why do you think the process of receiving a visa to come to the U.S. is so difficult, even for Afghans who have contacts like Congresspeople? What do you think could be done to make it easier?
  • Can you imagine some ways your own community could help refugees resettle in the U.S.?

Media literacy: This segment includes observations from one NewsHour reporter, mostly summarizing conversations she’s had. Who else would you like to hear from to better understand the difficulties or experiences of refugees?

Additional resources:

  • For more on the difficulties Afghans face in reaching the Kabul airport and boarding a plane out of the country, see this story.
  • If you would like to hear more Afghan voices to better understand the significance of the Taliban’s takeover, check out this resource from Colorín Colorado.

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