Zebulon Simantov has urged Americans not to vote for either Biden or Trump in the next Presidential elections.
By Donna Rachel Edmunds, World Israel News
Afghanistan’s last Jew, who fled the country last month in the wake of the Taliban takeover, has warned Israel not to trust the United States, as America did not bring peace to the war-torn country.
“I say to Israel, don’t rely on the United States,” Zebulon Simantov told Israel’s Kan broadcaster on Tuesday.
“The United States and the international community brought bloodshed to Afghanistan. They didn’t bring peace and left the citizens in this situation.”
“I was in danger every day,” he added, reflecting on his decision to leave Afghanistan. “I protected the synagogue for years and now I had no choice.”
Simantov’s exit from the country marks the end of Afghanistan’s 1,500 year old Jewish community, making the decision to leave a difficult one. He still hopes to return one day if peace comes again to the country, he told Kan, adding that he left the synagogue in safe hands and expects it to be protected from the Taliban until a Jewish community can return. But for now, despite his desire to remain, he felt the situation had become untenable.
“I sensed something terrible was going to happen to Afghanistan,” Simantov said. “The Taliban is much crueler than ever before. They kill people now like killing small animals.”
Last week, the terror group which seized control of the country as American troops withdrew in August, announced that Sharia punishments including hand amputation for theft are to be made the norm.
But although U.S. President Joe Biden has been widely criticized for the shambolic departure of U.S. troops, Simantov was no more supportive of former President Donald Trump, whom he called a “madman” in an interview with the New York Post earlier this week.
“[Biden] left so fast and he left people behind … The terrorist groups were celebrating when the Taliban toppled the Afghan government,” Simantov told the Post, adding: “I request that American citizens not vote for either Trump or President Biden in the next election in 2024.”
Simantov, 62, spent several days trekking to a neighboring country to escape. It is unclear which country he is now in, but he hopes to get to America to start a new life in New York City. In the meantime, he is being sheltered in a hotel by Israeli-American businessman Moti Kahana, who is directing rescue efforts from his home in New Jersey.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has been lobbied intensely by Simantov’s supporters in an effort to get the former carpet dealer the travel documents he requires. Shumer’s office told the Post that the matter is being dealt with.